It is very difficult nowadays, to satisfy box-office demands and yet produce a decent film. A.R.Gandhi Krishna’s Chellamay lives up to its hot promos and Reema Sen steals the show with an impressive performance.
Mythili (Reema Sen) is very affectionate from her childhood towards Viswa, (Bharath) her neighbour, and the only son of a very rich businessman Rajasekhar (Girish Karnad), who had lost his wife when the child was six months old. She is very protective about him and treats Viswa like her younger brother, as the little boy grows up under her eyes. (View gallery: Story in pics of Chellamay)
Raghunandan (Vishal) is a very smart Income Tax officer who comes to Rajasekhar’s place and finds his ill-gotten wealth hidden by Viswa in Mythili’s house! But soon Raghu falls in love with her and after a series of incidents they get married and settle down in Goa. Trouble starts as Viswa is shattered after Mythili’s wedding, and he comes to Goa and stays near her house.
Slowly, Viswa becomes jealous of Raghu and their happy life as he becomes more and more obsessed with Mythili. One day he hatches a plan, kidnaps Mythili and keeps her in a beach house near Mahabalipuram. He becomes a maniac and his only enemy is Raghu whom he considers as an obstacle in his quest for a peaceful life with Mythili. As to Why Viswa is obsessed with Mythili, is told in the climax of the film shot in the high seas.
Reema Sen is a sure winner. Be it her glamourous skin-show, her love scenes or her final break-down on the beach, she steals the scenes. Sen does a fine job of portraying both her strength and her underlying vulnerability. “Boys” fame Bharath as Viswa is enticing and has done his part convincingly by bringing out the innocence of a 17-year-old along with his hidden angst as a neglected child.
Newcomer Vishal is tall and does the regular superhero stuff. Vivek takes on the income tax department which brings down the house, especially the scene where he interrogates actress Mumtaz and asks her about her “movable and immovable properties”!!! Girish Karnad is wasted in an insipid role.
Technically Chellamay is picture perfect as K.V.Anand’s lighting and camera are simply superb. The song “En Sonali…” picturised on silver sands of Andaman Islands is breath taking. Harris Jayaraj's music makes a perfect package for the film, with the “Vellaikkara….”, sung by Mahathi being the pick of the album. The veteran V.T.Vijayan has now started fast-cut editing, the order of the day.
The story and screenplay of Gandhi Krishna is somewhat in the manner of Yash Chopra’s Darr and so many other obsessive love stories. Still he has come out with a racy film that is sure to satisfy the youth audience and has been packaged strictly to suit their tastes.
Verdict: Cracker of a Movie!