Movies in a historical settings that inspire, move and evoke great emotion and melodrama makes for great entertainment.
The first movie that probably comes to our mind is "Veerapandiya Kattabomman". Who can ever forget Nadigar thilagam Sivaji Ganesan’s iconic role of the brave freedom fighter who battles against the British.
Bharathi- a biographical film based on the life of Mahakavi Subramaniya Bharathiyaar, was brilliantly portrayed by Sayaji Shinde. The film won the National Award and featured the song "Nirpathuve Nadapathuve" which is a beautiful composition by maestro Ilayaraja.
Hey Ram- directed and produced by Kamal Haasan the semi-fictional plot centres around India's Partition and the murder of Mahatma Gandhi by Hindu fundamentalist Nathuram Godse.The song "Nee Partha" by Asha Bhonsle and Hariharan is a hauntingly beautiful track from the album.
Madarasapattinam- A film set in 1940s India, during the country's struggle for independence from the British. The poetic love story of the young daughter of an English governor and local Indian boy was praised for its art settings and costumes.The song "Pookal Pookum Tharunam" speaks of the poignant love between the star-crossed lovers.
Jodhaa Akbar- It is a fictional love story of the sixteenth century Moghul emperor Akbar and Jodhaa, the Hindu Rajput princess .The songs by AR Rahman is hailed as a magnum opus by Rahman with its magnificent instrumentals and spectacular scores- "Jashn-E-Bahaara" and "Khwaja Mere Khawaja" are considered the best.
The film Urumi- is another heart wrenching story about a young soldier who revolted against the Portugese and tried to kill Vasco Da gama.The song "Aaro Nee Aaro" in the film is a beautiful compostition rendered by KJ yesudas and Shwetha Mohan. However, it was alleged to be plagiarised from a Loreena McKennitt's compostion.
The list would be incomplete without Mughal-e-Azam , which is the historical epic following the love affair between Mughal Prince Salim (who went on to become Emperor Jahangir) and Anarkali, a court dancer. Emperor Akbar, Salim’s father disapproves of the relationship, which leads to a war between father and son. The film was legendary- It cost more to produce than any previous Indian motion picture; the budget for a single song sequence exceeded that typical for an entire film of the period. The song "Pyar Kiya To Darna Kya" is one of the greatest songs in Indian Cinema.