Saturday 12 January 2008
Balakrishna, Nisha Kothari, Anushka, Simran, Ashutosh Rana, Kota Srinivasa Rao
Veera Venkata Satyanarayana Prasad alias Ramu (Balakrishna) is almost the God for the villagers of Venkatapuram. They hail him as Devadideva. Ramu tells them that he is just an ordinary human being. He is their savior. Even the government and law are afraid to touch him. One day, he performs the marriage of two lovers, the bridegroom being the son of Chief Minister (Ashutosh Rana). Simultaneously, an old man takes on the role of Punisher of the Corrupt. By decoding certain features from the old man, the police sketch points to Ramu as the killer. During interrogation, the old man comes and reveals that he is the killer. He also reveals that he was the Okka Magaadu, the erstwhile Raghupati Raghava Rajaram (Balakrishna), who waged a stern fight against the British in the 1940s. The enmity between the old man and the CM intensifies. Who exactly is this old man? Why does he kill the baddies sixty years after the Independence? Did he really kill? These are the questions which give twists and counter twists.
Balakrishna did the dual roles of grandson (Ramu) and grandpa (Okka Magaadu) with superb justification. However, the characterization of Okka Magaadu gives a feel that it is out and out a direct lift of Kamal Hassan's in Bharateeyudu. Apart from this, Okka Magaadu often makes a stretched out laugh ? Aaah? Aah. Aah?. Exactly, say two hundred percent like Rajnikanth in the film Sivaji. Coming to Ramu characterization, it is more like Balakrishna's ramp in most songs and stylish scenes. But one thing is sure; YVS Chowdary presented NBK as a very handsome hero in this film. On the whole, the film is technically tacky.
Coming to female leads, Nisha Kothari and Anushka have given sumptuous oomph. One hundred percent, they have no roles to play, but to tease the hero. While Nisha Kothari, appearing as a TV reporter, continuously pestering NBK to marry him. The same thing is done by Anushka. Both the girls competed with each other in shaking their hips to their fullest energy. Simran has good footage in the film as the wife of Okka Magaadu. She has lengthy dialogues, performance and sentiment attached to her characterization. Again, Simran's getup as an old lady is not convincing. The makeup is gaudy.
Ashutosh Rana who plays Chief Minister hams and looks funny. In one scene, he comes to the hospital without shirt and trouser ? just wearing an underwear! Ridiculous attempt by YVS Chowdary! You have comedians Krishna Bhagwan and Raghu Babu?s comedy falls flat. Ranganath, Vijay Chander and Chalapati Rao appear in a couple of shots in the introduction Song. And what was Kota Srinivasa Rao doing in those two scenes? Ravi Kale and Subba Raju played the roles of investigating cops. Their assignment too is not given a full shape.
There is nothing new in the story of YVS Chowdary. A big minus point is that he tried to present Bharateeyudu in a more stylized manner. The characterization of Balakrishna as Okka Magaadu (old man's role) is partially influenced by Rajnikanth's climax role in Sivaji. The flashback dating back to 1940 and its synchronization in 21 st century is a big flaw. Screenplay is monotonous. However, YVS should deserve praise for maintaining the suspense about the dual roles of Balakrishna till the point it is revealed. Direction is mediocre and at times turned funny.
The introduction song and NBK's duet with Simran are interesting. A couple of songs with the hero shaking legs with Nisha Kothari and Anushka are a good watch. The last song with remixed lyrics from NTR's oldies is a let down, in spite of profuse hip shakes by the heroines. Music by Mani Sharma is a saving grace. Dialogues department requires special mention. NBK's lengthy dialogue against caste feeling is a good one.