Idaya Kovil (Eng: Temple in Heart) is a 1985 Indian Tamil language film directed by Mani Ratnam, starring Mohan, Ambika, Radha and Goundamani. Featuring a score and soundtrack composed by Ilaiyaraaja, the movie did well at the box office.
Suriya (Radha) wishes to get popular singer Shankar (Mohan) to sing in her college festival. Initial attempts to meet Shankar prove futile as he is a recluse. Nonetheless, she breaks into his home to meet him but is shocked to discover him in an inebriated state. She makes efforts to make him sober and come to the festival. It works as Shankar performs at the festival. Over time, as they become friends, Shankar stops drinking and Suriya falls in love with him but he has a dark past which is then revealed.
Before becoming famous, Shankar grew up in a village where he used to sing in the festivals there. He and Gauri (Ambika) love each other and Shankar, with encouragement from Gauri, wishes to become a famous singer and leaves for Madras. He soon gets an opportunity to sing for a radio program but unknown to him, Gauri arrived at Madras on the same day. Without Shankar to receive her at the bus stop, she gets lost in the city when trying to find Shankar and is chased by a group of thugs and finds refuge in a temple, where she commits suicide. At the same time Shankar sings for the program and later finds her body in the temple. This incident drives Shankar into an alcoholic recluse.
Meanwhile, Suriya’s parents arrange for her to be wedded to her friend. Although Suriya wants to wed Shankar, he refuses stating that his only true love is Gauri even though he cares about her. On the day of the wedding, just before the ceremony, Suriya collapses and dies, having consumed poison prior to the wedding.
The film ends as Shankar looks over the graves of both Gauri and Suriya.
Directed by Mani Ratnam
Produced by Kovai Thambi
Written by M. G. Vallabhan (Dialogues)
Screenplay by M. G. Vallabhan
Story by R. Selvaraj
Starring Mohan, Radha, Ambika, Goundamani, Kapil Dev
Music by Ilaiyaraaja
Cinematography Raja Rajan
Edited by B. Lenin & V. T. Vijayan
Production Motherland Pictures
Distributed by Motherland Pictures
Release date 14 September 1985
Running time 160 minutes