True to the Telugu cinema norms, the princess falls in love with her guard. Billa (Gil Dev), the nephew of Udayghad’s King, has his eyes on the kingdom and the princess, but is defeated by Kalabhairava. Sher Khan (Srihari), a Muslim ruler, takes advantage of the rivalry between the family members and invades the kingdom, with Billa on his side. In a fierce battle, both the lovers are killed.
In 2009, the four characters reincarnate in the contemporary world, playing their parts in a modern way. But the revenge factor is supreme. How it is dealt with forms the rest of the story.
Ram Charan’s performance looks like an extension of what he had done in his debut film Chirutha. Magadheera limits him to action scenes and romantic songs, with fewer portions dedicated to emotions. The action, however, has more punch thanks to bike races, horse riding and what not.
Coming to emoting, there is not much scope for the young hero. But he enthrals the audiences with his mind-blowing dance in Bangaru Kodi Petta song, sizzling with Mumaith Khan.
Kajal Agarwal looks stunningly beautiful in perfect costumes - both as a princess and a modern girl. However, her emotional scenes are a drag because of her amateurish display, leading to frivolous results. She dominates the romantic scenes, which is a major advantage to the film.
Chiranjeevi’s cameo in the remix song will naturally elevate the commercial levels of the movie. And though senior hero Srihari played only a small role, it is of great importance to the film. He grips the scenes with his superb dialogues and getups.
Dev Gil who plays the villain - pre and post reincarnation - is the perfect choice by director Rajamouli to bring the much-needed villainy onscreen. Rao Ramesh, who impressed the audience with his role as a Naxalite in Gamyam, plays the role of an Aghora in this film, giving curious moments in the theatre.
As usual, the list of comedians includes Brahmanandam and Sunil. Kim Sharma does her part well as an item girl. When the movie was launched last year, director Rajamouli dared to reveal the central theme of the story. He has succeeded in his attempt, as he was able to keep the screenplay and narration gripping from start to finish. The second half has the soul in it.
Interestingly, any regular audience would find some striking similarities between Maghadeera and Arundhati. Both are about incarnation themes and both have the aghora element.
Music by M M Keeravani misses the magic this time, but suffices to hold his spell on the audience. Cinematography plays a vital role with capturing the historic ambience of castles, romantic sojourns into scintillating locales and also into the risky stunts. To replicate the mood of 400 years ago is not an ordinary thing and required much artwork. In this, the venture succeeded.
Stunts by Peter Haynes rule the roost. The film also has its visual grandeur. Dialogues are fine and synchronies with the episodes. In short, the movie encompasses some of the best commercial elements that Telugu audience have seen in the recent past.
Verdict: Brilliant entertainer