Thursday 22 October 2015
Varun Tej, Pragya Jaiswal, Nikitin Dheer
In the Second World War in 1944, an Indian soldier Hari Babu (Varun Tej) fighting against Nazi forces in Italy narrates his story by writing letters to Seethadevi. Belonging to the barber community in Devarakonda village, Hari Babu gets his higher education in Madras and falls in love with his college mate Seethadevi (Pragya). She is also from his village and is the daughter of their village landlord.
Their love is opposed by Seethadevi’s brother because Hari Babu is from a lower caste, while Seethadevi doesn’t believe in class and caste differences. Then the story moves to Hari Babu’s travails in the war zone. Back and forth two stories move forward to an unexpected climax.
Director Krish, known for making off-beat movies that won him a great following, has chosen an altogether different story for a Telugu movie. Never before in Tollywood, have we seen a movie set in the backdrop of world war. First and foremost, this is a novelty. Then the story juxtaposes (rather goes back and forth) two different conflicts – two lovers trying to unite against the class structure in village and a soldier trying to risk his life to save a child from oppressing Nazi forces.
While the story of Varun and Pragya belonging two different communities falling in love is not at all unique, we have seen this umpteen times. The World War setup is what completely unique to Telugu audiences. Naturally, director Krish has focused more on this story and used the back-and-forth narrative technique.
The entire episodes of War in Italy (shot in Georgia) looks real. The weapons, the tanks, the fighting methods, the locations, the foreign actors… all seem pitch perfect.
Despite heavy usage of foreign language in their conversation, the action glues us. On the flipside, the Telugu subtitles used for their conversation is pretty bad – dull font, full of typos.
Also, in the first half of the movie, there is a war episode which is as long as 15 minutes. After a few minutes, it seems stretched beyond a point.
Regarding the second story, as said earlier it is rather plain. Both Varun and Pragya look cute in the 40’s attire, their chemistry is refreshing. But it is hard to believe that a Zamindar family which is so much conscious about their class mingles so freely with a son of a Barber even though he is their daughter’s college mate.
Also a Brahmin pujari being a buddy to Hari Babu is unconvincing. And it is also hard to believe that a girl even though she is rich calls her lover ‘Ra..’ and raises hands on him.
Their attire seems 40’s but body language is of today’s times. Nitpicking apart, their love story is pretty okay.
What appeals the most in the movie is the making of the movie which is truly topnotch. This is undoubtedly Krish’s technically sound film with rich visuals and best production values. Then comes the dialogue – Burra Sai Madhav has penned some thought provoking lines.
Varun Tej is fitted perfectly in the role of Hari Babu - both as a solider in the war zone, and as a besotted lover. Pragya Jaiswal looks beautiful. Nikitin Dheer as the villain and Avasarala Srinivas as the timid soldier come up with decent performances. Veteran director Singeetam appears in a blink-and-miss act, Gollapudi and Shavakarju Janaki are good.
Technically, the film is rich with eye-catching visuals by Jnanasekhar. His work is best among the technical crew. Music is not good. Songs would put you to sleep. Although the movie has just two-plus hours runtime, it looks lengthy, a better pace is needed. You need a little bit of patience.
Sai Madhav’s dialogues are another big asset to the movie. As writer and director Krish has proved that he always attempts novel storylines. Not a great movie but deserves appreciation for his attempt.
Kanche is a period love saga with a different backdrop. Novel storyline, rich film-making values and some good dialogues are its assets, but slow pace and excessive war drama tests the patience. Suitable only for discerning audiences.
Kanche Review rating: 3/5