Film: 'Mylari'; Cast: Shivaraj Kumar, Sada, Sanjjana, John Kokki, Bullet Prakash, Lakshman, Suresh Mangalore, Rahul and others; Producer: Kanakapura Srinivas and K.P. Srikanth; Story-Screenplay-Director: R. Chandru; Music: Guru Kiran; Camera: Chandrashekhar; Rating: ***
'Mylari' is certainly a mixed bag with good points slightly overtaking the negative elements in the film.
Despite actor Shivaraj Kumar, music director Guru Kiran and director R. Chandru getting honours for their work, the average viewer will definitely feel that it does not stand up to the hype it had created before its release.
This may be because of the story content and the script work done by the director. Though the performance of the artistes and the technical work might impress you, but during the film never will you feel that you are watching an innovative project -- the way it was publicised before its release.
'Mylari' is Shivaraj's 99th film. The actor, nearing his fifties, has been able to maintain his physique and looks which can cause envy in much younger stars in Sandalwood. His energy levels have also been quite spectacular and he is the only living artiste today who has bagged six best actor awards from the state government.
Though some of his recent films have been box office duds, 'Mylari' had created a big buzz among his fans and also in trade circles with its innovative publicity and attractive song picturisations.
The love angle between the hero and the heroine has been beautifully handled by the director. He shows it only through their emotions.
Chandru has not over-emphasized any commercial aspect like action sequences, underworld connections, comedy elements and even the songs beyond the story's requirement.
However on the flipside, the film has more of dragging elements in the first half and many sequences even in the second half may make you look at your watch or find better options than to glue your eyes to the screen.
The reverse screenplay order narration makes you watch many interesting developments in the story in flash backs which may in turn lessen the impact.
Sanjjana's character is wasted in the film.
Mylari is one among the two sons of a poor farmer who has no interest in studies like his younger brother. However, he is fond of poetry and expresses his love for Anitha - daughter of a big landlord in his village - through poems.
Anitha would not express her love directly to Mylari. But when Mylari gathers courage to reveal his love, an unexpected turn forces him to leave the village.
Mylari becomes a journalist in Bangalore. He exposes the duplicity of the leader of the opposition through his investigation. In the process his friend Guru Prasad who publishes about the leader gets killed. Mylari kills the opposition leader and faces death sentence. But the President pardons him after his books get the best literary awards.
Later, Mylari unites with Anitha who had also faced some twists in life.
Shivaraj shows a lot of energy in his role. Sada looks extremely glamorous and she is also expressive through her eyes. Sanjjana dances well in the popular 'Mylari' song. John Kokki excels in his limited role. All the other veteran artistes have adequately contributed to their roles.
Guru Kiran has returned with a bang through this film. Chandrashekhar's camera work is another highlight of the film as is Prakash's editing work.
'Mylari' is a must watch for Shivaraj's fans. But for the others, it's a mixed bag which could be enjoyed for a few good elements on screen.