Thanikattu Raja (The Lone Forest King) is a 1982 Indian Tamil action movie written and directed by V. C. Guhanathan. It stars Rajnikanth, Sridevi and Sripriya in the lead roles with Jaishankar, Vijayakumar, Sathyakala and Y. Gee. Mahendra in supporting roles. The film was a hit at the box office. ‘Santhana Kaatrae’ and ‘Raasavae Unna Naan’ songs became famous in 1982. Produced by D. Ramanaidu under the banner Suresh Productions, the film had music by Ilayaraja and cinematography handled by P. S. Nivas.
Soori (Rajinikanth) is a rebellious young man who works as a mechanic and often lands in trouble fighting for justice. He falls in love with a rich girl Vaani (Sridevi), but Vaani’s father plots to break their relationship through his manager (Vijayakumar). In the ensuing melee, Soori murders the manager to save Vaani’s honour. Soori is about to be sentenced to death and Vaani finds that the only way she can save Soori is by marrying a rich, roguish man (Jaishankar) who uses his money to get Soori’s death penalty commuted to a prison term. After his release, Soori is distraught at losing Vaani and takes to drinking. He moves to his village where he becomes immensely popular among the villagers due to his righteous work and progressive activities. He offers protection to a village damsel Vidhya (Sripriya) to escape from being forced to be a ‘devadasi’ and later marries her but still remains alcoholic. Vaani meets and advises him to stop drinking and turn over a new leaf. Despite being abused by her husband and falsely accused of hobnobbing with Soori, Vaani maintains the sanctity of her marriage. Whether Soori and Vaani’s lives return to normal forms the rest of the story.
Directed by V. C. Guhanathan
Produced by Ramanaidu
Written by V. C. Guhannathan
Starring Rajnikanth, Sridevi, Sripriya, Jaishankar
Music by Ilayaraja
Cinematography P. S. Nivas
Distributed by Suresh Productions
Release dates 12 March 1982