By: By Sandhya Rao
Critic's Rating: 3/5
Friday 23 May 2014
Akkineni Nageshwara Rao, Nagarjuna, Naga Chaitanya, Samantha, Shriya Saran
Legendary actor Late Akkineni Nageshwara Rao`s last film, Manam, is here. The film is a fitting tribute to the great actor.
The film is also special as it has brought three generation of actors belonging to Akkineni family - ANR, Nagarjuna and Naga Chaitanya in one film. The director Vikram Kumar has written an endearing story that has room for these three actors from the same family to enact roles that surprise the audiences.
Manam is one of the beautifully shot, tautly narrated films in the recent times. Rebirth, fate, and destiny.. these were used in an intelligent manner to make it an engrossing movie.
The film`s story begins in 1980. Krishna (Samantha) and Radha (Naga Chaitanya) are a happily married couple with a kid Bittu (1980). Bittu is orphaned when his parents die in an accident. Bittu grows up and one day sees his reincarnation of his parents as youngsters who are in love.
The rest of the story is all about how Bittu helps these youngsters. Added to this there is a twist, which we will not reveal here. It must be watched onscreen to be experienced.
ANR is the pillar of Manam. He is outstanding to say the least. But the film truly rests on Nagarjuna`s shoulder. As a billionaire who longs for his parents, Nag is awesome. He exudes a positivity that is best seen onscreen. There is lot of improvement in Naga Chaitanya`s acting. He looks natural and has done justice to his role. Samantha has acted in two roles and in both she excels.
Shriya has done a good job. Lavanya Tripathi, M S Narayana, Ali, Posani and Brahmanandam entertain. Akhil Akkineni comes in the end and is good. Amala Akkineni and Amitabh Bachchan have done cameos in the film.
Director Vikram K Kumar has given us a unique film. The screenplay is top notch. The way the story is woven with rebirth and the present era is very fascinating. The screenplay is very strong and the director has handled the subject well. There are barely any negatives in the film. What is funny is the way ANR, Nag and Chaitu have been named in the film.
Tunes by Anoop Rubens are good and gels well with the film. His music is main strength too. His background score is simply superb. P S Vinod's brilliant camerawork has added visual sheen to the movie. His camera in many episodes paints the screen as a perfect picture.
Editing by Praveen Pudi is decent. Manam is a content driven film and Akkineni family has given us a good film, with rich production values. The big plus of Manam is its script. Manam`s story is something new within Telugu films context, but the way the film showcases romance and emotion, it is far from a regular fare. Go watch Manam, a complete entertainer, which will surely enthrall!
It`s been a while that we saw film like Manam. Superb script, perfect direction and above all good acting. Manam is a complete winner. Also the movie is a fitting tribute to ANR, the great actor. Must watch.
A story such as this deserved much more nuance and heart
The final unraveling is sadly is too diluted to offer any thrill or excitement
Halitha Shameem's Aelay is a feel-good drama