My take on Magadheera [movie review]

It’s been a while the much awaited (?) movie ‘Magadheera’ is out and we have numerous reviews online. So, my attempt here is not to review the movie in general (may be a little!) but the reviews themselves (more!).

We watched it in Prasads, one of the best screens available of course including the sound system, as few reviews recommend the sound system as a very important aspect to live the experience and enjoy the power packed performance. We had little fun like any other movie, we enjoyed the bits here and there, we appreciate the effort and patch work (from all the hollywood movies 300, Troy and what not; and a little from Jodhaa Akbar too!) and we did feel ridiculed in a lot of moments. It ends there. We could clearly see visual inconsistency in a lot of scenes; not just the graphics part but even the regular indoor shots- some were blurred, some were sharp, some even out of focus. It’s not a marvelous treat; it’s not a ‘new era’ in Telugu cinema; or a master-piece.

So, just to add clarity – it is not a must watch or a wonderful film. I too call it an okay movie. Definitely not one of the Rajmouli’s best. All the hype just because Mega Star’s son is the hero.

Story: About 400 years ago, a beautiful princess falls in love with her personal bodyguard. A bro-in-law of the princess wants to marry her – for reasons of lust and the power over kingdom. There is a competition to ‘win’ her and followed by a war where all of them die. That sepia epic runs for about 40-50 mins. All the characters are reborn in this century and one after the other slowly wake up to the 400 year old history. How the hero (Charan) makes it work is the feat that covers up the movie.

It’s the approx. 45 min sepia epic that runs the movie. In the present generation characters, the hero’s (Harsha) touch of the heroine’s (Indu) fingers ‘spark’s to the past every once in a while. And I almost stood up a few times that the movie was over and climax  was never even near. Without a question, climax was the worst part of the movie.

Music: To listen, I like two tracks; ‘Dheera Dheera’ and the melody tune ‘Panchadaara bomma bomma’, esp the lines ‘nuv andakapothe vruda ee janmaa aa aa a” :D. the last ‘item’ track is really an item. ‘Dheera Dheera’ I heard was highlight for the movie in terms of picturization – it’s just fine, but what you know, compared to the rest of the movie, that was the best part. And the ‘panchadaara bomma’ song has disappointed me a little; I was hoping for nice dance sequences but little dance it has and a lot of posing for a photo shoot.

Bangaru kodi petta: The choreography is good and Charan danced his best to live up to the music. However, two things that negate the so called history recreated is Chiru’s appearance for a minute and the 15 odd minutes wasted (probably the worst part after climax) to make room for this song. Especially Chiru admiring Charan for his dance spoils the game. Not to mention, the funny old clip of Chiru’s break dance from the original song. That clip, in pink vest, of all the dances from Chiru’s tracks?!!

Narration and screenplay: It was very odd in many scene changing instances that the transition was not smooth. It was like having a dozen files on the desktop and double-clicking on one after the other to watch the clip. Yes, everything related to the same movie/ story but not something which lets you enjoy the transition. It’s like dumping parts of the story and asking us to build it as we like. I ain’t an editor (yet :P)

Charan: I’ve read that this is a movie too early in his career where seasoned actors after dozens of movies are eligible. I disagree. We tend to appreciate the performance as we know they are ‘seasoned’. Only when we have new comers try this we will know the actual performance. I think though not great, Charan did his best. It is true that he did concentrate on the performance and image more and the emotions took a hit.

Kajal: She is the best part of the movie. She is the surprise pack. Looks beautiful as the princess, did well in the reincarnated role and overall a nice performance. Though the make up and jewellery did not match the ‘Jodhaa [Akbar]’ in the sepia epic, it was good. She of course improved a lot since ‘Chandamama’. Soumya (RJ) also did a good job in dubbing her voice.

Srihari: Looked good (fully involved in the 300 remake scene) in the old epic but was not so in the current generation appearance with the Srikakulam fisherman accent. Especially, the climax scene where his jeep hits the villain’s helicopter is very funny. Of course he jumps out before the jeep jumps a dozen feet high. 🙂

Bramhanandam, Sunil, Hema: Sorry to note that Bramhanandam and Hema could not add any entertainment value in the movie. Sunil was kinda okay here and there.

And then there is Saloni for few seconds before the last item song by Kim Sharma, no one knows why. There’s Mumaith Khan in ‘Bangaru kodi petta’ and also villain (Dev) who did a decent job.

I guess I have more to talk but this should be fine for now. Am a little tired, and this post was in my ‘drafts’ for a couple of days now. I just had to get it out. Happy weekend!

Oy! Did it come out right?

I’ve listened to the music for a couple of weeks continuously before watching the movie and I love it. I had huge expectations for the movie I based on the quality of the music. While, loving the music has helped me enjoy the experience, the expectations were too high I guess, or the movie itself didn’t probably turn out as well.

Siddharth is his usual charming self and pretty convincing as a son of rich businessman. His performance is more noticeable in the second half. Shamili can be treated just as a newcomer. She seemed she wasn’t ready for a come back [with few extra pounds for example] and did the movie anyway. Her performance doesn’t remind anyone of her ‘Anjali’ as a child artist, though I kept wondering if this is the same girl that set new standards then. Sunil was better [not great] with his comedy considering his recent past appearances.

Music is an asset to the movie. Yuvan Shankar Raja has done a marvelous job and I can’t stop humming ‘Seheri’ even now. The songs are  pictured well and I kinda love the lyrics too. Unlike using a lot of fillers or vague words just to fill in the lines, they actually make sense given the situation the songs are placed in.

Story is a nice concept. It just did not make the right impact. It’s about two contrast characters Uday (sunrise) and Sandhya (sunset). As the title song goes, Sandhya is like ‘ Roopam lo na beautiful, Chethal lona duty full, Maatal lona Fundamental… Annitlona Capable, Annitlona Careful, Anthe Lenee Sentimental… … Dabbantene Alergy, Birth antene Energy, Nammuthundhi numerology… inti mundhu nursery, antaneedhu allari, Ooppukodhu Humourology…’ . And Uday is all ‘Vunnadhokate Nadiche Samayam, Dhanithone nuvve chesey paianam, Maru nimisham ledhantu life e gadipey merupula…’ fun loving rich 22 yr old boy. Seheri apparently means celebration.

He falls for her when spotted in a pub in a ‘tella chudidar’ on new year’s bash which also happens to be his birthday. She comes there as a friend insists but keeps writing her diary. These contrast characters have a twist when she is diagnosed for cancer on the same day he proposes to her (on her birthday). He takes her for a Kasi trip (something which was on her to-do list for a long time) to give her a chance to live life to the fullest in that one week. A giggle and grin, here and there, it was okay.

The concept can still work but only if written effectively. The movie is kinda flat and does not take the emotion to another level. Some say it’s the ‘Gitanjali’ attempt but has not worked out well. I feel the storyline is fine but the making did not make that impact to touch or feel the emotion. There was a good scope for this all throughout the movie- either comedy, sentiment or entertainment.

Sunil was good though, with the ‘Chatrapati’ ringtone gags. His role as an insurance agent, and his company with Pradeep (Chatrapathi villain) as Raas Bihari (?) is entertaining.

Overall, you’ll love the music and movie is just okay. It could have been better.

Current – movie review

current1A typical love story with not so good screenplay. First half went kinda okay with a comedy bit here and there. But second half seemed too long with very slow story movement and quite boring in some instances. There is no consistent comedy to at least keep the audiences gripped. Brahmanandam enters the scenes just before climax, when quite a good percentage of the audiences prepare to leave. Read the storyline in few sentences and you would know.

Sushant falls in love with Sneha at first sight. They happen to go to same college. He instills the feeling of love in her and she finally accepts. He is a live-the-moment guy with no plans for future and no regrets from the past. She is a career oriented and serious-about-life gal. Sneha asks Sushant to meet her father. Charan Raj (father) is not impressed with the lack of goal and seriousness about life attitude. Sneha asks him to change. He denies. They seperate. She requests he do something to take that feeling away from her heart as he started it all (!). Sushanth plans brothel arrest and drunk-on-road feats. Fails. Lot of drama and twists and they unite in the last 30 seconds.

Performances from Sneha, the supporting actor/ actress pair (Kishore/ Geeta) are good. Of course, Tanikella Bharani and Sudha who played Sushant’s parents. Brahmanandam had a very little role and Telangana Shakuntala’s role was for few seconds only. Shakila did make her appearance. And I think (I think) it’s Radio Mirchi RJ Soumya’s voice for supporting actress Geeta, which was very fluent and good. Sushant wasn’t up to the mark. After a while, we couldn’t stand that same expression on screen in all the scenes. I wish there were no close up shots for him.

Sneha on the other hand was good. She looked cute and glamorous in various costumes. She has traces of Aishwarya Rai in almost all the scenes. I liked the comedy with second love story (Kishore/ Geeta) and the ‘gang’ in college.

Music was okay except for a song or so. However, it didn’t feel like the usual Devi Sri Prasad’s contribution. Probably he was trying to match the movie’s overall theme/ performance/ level/ range/ what not.

Verdict: You are better off without watching this movie.

Boni – not a very good start

boni

In one phrase- not worth watching.

The only aspect of the movie which was not very disappointing is music. It’s not great but few tracks are good. And as it is well known, Ramana Gogula reads lines between songs (or is that rap?) which wasn’t very awkward in here. Or did I feel that way in contrast to the poor narration and vague storyline? 2-3 tracks were in deed pictured well, with nice art and costumes etc. These tracks are worth an ear and the good things about this  movie come to an end.

For Sumanth, it’s another attempt to play a mass hero, which I would say was not successful with all the class or ‘normal’ looks. He didn’t have that roughness or mass charm to fit in the role. Kriti is nice. She looked very comfortable on the screen. Apart from a very few ‘over-actions’ here and there, her performance is good. She has traces of Jayaprada and Anushka in a few scenes. Other cast, Trinetrudu (supporting actor), Tanikella Bharani, Sutti Velu were more entertaining than the lead roles, similar to Prayanam.

Technically it is a good movie. But, I guess the poor narration and storyline spoiled the game. DD (Sumanth) and Chinna (Trinetrudu) are childhood friends who grew up in an orphanage. Their lifetime goal is to setup a ‘pulihora’ center. They join goons, work with dons and invole in ‘collections’ and kidnaps to earn money for that. Surprisingly, they need 7 lakh rupees to start one! I wonder at what scale they were planning- they never mentioned going international! Pragathi (Kriti) enters their life when they kidnap her as part of their operations. She actually plans a kidnap herself with some police friends to extract money from her father, which she needs to free land for farmers in a village. That’s how the story goes, with no romance and chemistry on the screen.

Actually, there is one more good thing about the movie: a few one liners at regular intervals (from comedians). I’m sorry I forgot to mention this. This is the aspect which kept me awake all through the movie. I wish they worked on comedy a little more which could probably involve audiences a little.

Prayanam – mild entertainer [movie review]

Prayanam is a mild entertainer. I wasn’t bored at any point in the movie. But, there isn’t anything that caught my attention either. It has a typical storyline that ‘just happens in movies’.

It’s a love at first sight theme, that takes place in airport while awaiting departures. Hero falls in love with the girl and has two hours (and of course there is a flight delay) to impress and win her heart, who by the way is going to India to meet her prospective groom. 98% of the movie is in the airport (Malaysia). That implies, all movie long, same costumes and ambience. We did get a good tour of the airport though. I personally could recollect few of the places I’ve been to inside the massive structure.

It is a typical of Chandra Shekar Yeleti’s movies. If you liked ‘Aithe’ or ‘Anukokunda oka roju’, I guess you’ll enjoy this one too. 5 characters, a Brahmanandam and a couple other ‘co-passengers’ in the airport is all he used. Also, people who get the quick wit or sharp tongue comedy can have good moments from supporting actors.

Manoj tried his best to play innocent and succeeded good amount of times. However, there are scenes when you can see his expressions are artificial. Harika’s role is plain too. She isn’t very attractive or cute or hot but has expressive eyes. The entertaining part comes from the supporting actors, who played as friends for the lead roles. A little dissappointing again is Bramhanandam’s role. Except for a moment or two, I would say he wasn’t his best.

Music wasn’t very impressive either. Anantha sriram (kotha bangaru lokam) gave lyrics. Should listen to the three songs a few more times to checkout the lines. The one sung by the little girl Amritavashini souded cute though.

All in all, if you watch it, you wouldn’t feel bad or regret. If you don’t, there isn’t much you are missing out.

Official website: http://www.prayanam.com/