Almost two years after the film released, ardent fans of director C Premkumar’s 96 may still vividly recall the love story of Ram and Jaanu. Even if some details have grown fuzzy by now, this 10-minute medley composed and sung by Govind Vasantha, the film’s music director, will take you right back to the 90s when Ram and Jaanu were in school, then to the time when they met unexpectedly at the reunion and spent one evening together, reminiscing all that they loved and all that they lost.
Think Music India has launched the Think Medley series and this Vijay Sethupathi-Trisha starrer that won hearts in 2018 is the first in the series. The 10-minute video that is up on YouTube is a compilation of scenes and montages from the film – from Ram and Jaanu’s interactions in their school days to their what-if confession in the hotel room to the long walks they took on empty roads.
The medley begins with ‘Iravingu Theevai’, leads into ‘Yaen’ and then to ‘Life of Ram’. It grows into ‘Anthaathi’ and ends with the crowd favourite ‘Kaathalae Kaathalae’. All of it has been sung by Govind Vasantha himself. The song has been mixed and mastered by Rajan KS, with cuts by Vijay M Raghavan and title animation by Robin.
96, which marked Premkumar’s directorial debut, became one of the biggest hits that year. The film was appreciated for its simple story told engagingly, immersing audiences in nostalgia. The film went on to even inspire merchandise such as Ram and Jaanu dolls, and has since been remade in Kannada and Telugu. While actors Ganesh and Bhavana starred in the Kannada remake titled 99, Samantha and Sharwanand played the leads in the Telugu remake, which was titled Jaanu.
Talking about the film’s impact and overwhelming response, the director had observed to TNM then, “It just shows that a lot of them have been able to connect with the characters and the story. I believe it is the simplicity of the film that has struck a chord with the audience. All of us have Ram or Jaanu deep inside. That’s probably everyone’s deepest secret.”