Dammu movie review

At the audio function of Dammu, Rajamouli appreciated Boyapati Sreenu for sticking to the action/mass masala genre. In his words “I have drifted into movies involving graphics and Vinayak has dabbled with comedy. The only director, steadfast in his belief with action movies, is [Boyapati] Sreenu”

 

An avid Telugu movie fan has become intelligent these days. He knows what to expect from a director based on his previous work. On that level, Boyapati Sreenu has managed to satiate the expectations of a lot of people. Not just the fans. If the movie doesn’t connect with the normal crowds, he can always hide behind the words “But, it was made for the fans”

 

Fans: This word is bane for the industry. In the morning, before going out for the movie, I was chatting with a friend of mine and asked him, if he plans to watch the movie. He said ‘No’ and said it would be a torture to sit through the movie. Fair point, but a few weeks ago, when I said that a movie was bad, and it starred his favourite hero, he was quick to retort back by asking ‘Did you watch the movie?’ Well, the time that I had a chat with him, he wouldn’t have watched the movie. I too am a fan of a hero, and I enjoy his monotony as much as his different roles. Hate for actors hasn’t permeated into me, yet.

 

Coming back to the movie, there is nothing that you would find to be novel, but the way Junior Ntr enacts and modulates his dialogues is to be watched on the big screen. His fans would be disappointed with the fact that the NTR they knew for dancing, didn’t turn up in this movie. The song ‘Ruler’ turned out to be a dampener

 

Adding to NTR’s performance are the BGM and dialogues in the movie. “Pandi Balisthe  adhi Enugu kadhu” seems a normal dialogue, but the way NTR delivers it bought about a lot of cheers in the theatre. Every confrontation with the villain(s) has NTR slipping into the effortless mode. Now for the all-important question, will the movie propel NTR a few notches above Mahesh Babu in the pecking order? No, for the primary reason that he indulges in a lot of chest thumping, which might not actually gel with the neutral audience

 

There is a lot of double entendre in the movie that could have been avoided. In spite of the ‘A’ certificate, a few words strike a jarring note. Ali has been doing a lot of these roles in the recent past and the day might not be far away, when his very presence in the movie will make the censors stamp an ‘A’.

 

  • NTR shines in a role that was tailor-made for him. Except for the dance sequences, he manages to go beyond the expectations of the people. His suggestive dialogues might turn away a few non-fans. Considering that the movie had a lot of family audiences, he should have taken care to avoid the suggestive dialogues

 

  • Trisha has a neither here, nor there role in the movie. She doesn’t have much to do in the second half of the movie. If the movie hits the bulls-eye, she can be sure of landing a couple of plum offers

 

  • There is nothing in the movie that justifies Karthika’s role in the movie. The director might say that it was essential in enticing the masses to the theatre, but I felt that her overtures in the movie were uncalled for

 

  • The rest score well in their respective roles

 

  • Boyapati Sreenu seems to have become an expert at these movies now. The story thread is always based in a family and how the protagonist works towards redeeming the lost glory of the family. Each and every action sequence in the movie is brilliant. The ‘hand folded behind the back’ sequences were a pleasure to watch ( it appears twice in the movie). All in all, a movie that would further enhance the reputation of everyone involved with the movie

 

IPL: Champion of whose cause?

Robin Bist and Vineet Saxena. Do these names ring a bell? Yes, they were the pillars for Rajasthan in  the Ranji Trophy win, this year. Which teams do they represent in IPL? Vineet, doesn’t have a contract and Bist is listed to play for the Delhi Daredevils

 

If this is the plight of players in a winning team, imagine that of the players from the plate league. One of the biggest advantages, while playing in IPL, is hobnobbing with the best players in the world. Citing the examples above, the players have been failed by the system, unless Robin Bist is learning the technique of switch hit and paddle scoop from Kevin Pietersen and Dilshan respectively.

 

The established players can certainly teach the local players the technique, but the vision and the execution has to flow from that particular player’s brain. It is actually shocking to see a few esteemed heads taking the side of IPL ( not T20 internationals). From the other side, the grass doesn’t seem too green on the IPL side

 

* * * * * *

 

There are players who represent teams in the plate league, and are capable of making the grade in IPL. Speaking to one such player, he readily accepted that his action was suspect and was sent to the NCA for corrective measures. Though he made the changes in his action, he is constantly riddled by the questions of ‘What if’

 

Now imagine, if this guy were to interact with Muralidaran, he would not gain in bowling ability, but he would get some advice in harnessing the brain. The same player said “To make the national team, you need to have talent. Backing up that talent, is also very crucial. Virat Kohli (with whom he played in the U-19 level) is an example of the same. Once you make the grade…..”

 

He trailed off in his last few words. After much goading, he managed to stitch together an incoherent response. He said that once you make the national grade, even in the presence of a suspect action, it would be tough to bring the player back to the roots. Without actually indicating the names, he hinted at the bowlers who had a suspect action

 

He sustains himself by playing in three leagues, in different cities. Though he is humorous and happy with the position he finds himself, there must be a regret that given his talent, he could have done with some help

 

* * * * * *

 

At the other end of the spectrum, there is this man who found his way into a Ranji team, based on one very good innings in the IPL. Nobody grudges him the chance as he made his way in by facing some quality bowlers in the tournament.

 

That he did nothing to actually enhance his reputation by playing well in his debut will hang like an albatross on his neck. He got multiple chances and situations to prove himself. All he did on most occasions was to go for the ball, from ball one. His strike rate was up there, but the one time that he managed to rein in the attacking instincts and play, he scored his highest of the season- a half-century.

 

He has himself to blame. When the entire team was adhering to the strict rules, he went out and flouted the rules. That he lacked the discipline was evident to an outsider, but he had an IPL contract on hand. This season, he has managed to replicate the first class cricket form and finds himself in and out of the team he represents

 

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That  IPL helps the cause of cricketers in India, at least financially, is the most bandied about reason by people who see no wrong in IPL. If the larger interests of cricket are at the heart of the administrators, they would do well to add a team consisting of associate and affiliate nations. If the owners would have had the time to cast their eye on the recently conducted ICC WT20 Qualifiers, they would’ve cast their net on a lot of players. The owners, though, will only let in players dictated by the finance potential of the respective players

 

Not everything is wrong with the IPL. In the next post, I will discuss the positives to come out, not just financial, of the tournament

 

Racha movie review

There is a dialogue in the movie “Nuvve Nuvve”  where Tarun says that a father should expect the son to climb from the eleventh step, if the father himself has climbed ten steps. Sampath Nandi, the man who joined Posani Murali after Trivikram took the dialogue too seriously. He thinks Ram Charan will take off from where his father left the reins

 

First things first, there is nothing in Ram Charan that points towards a secure superstar future. Part of the lure of a superstar is, salvaging a downright bad film to a decent film. Ram Charan fails to salvage the movie. Period. Credit to him, that he actually agreed to act in Racha.

 

He must still be ruing the last 15 minutes of that movie ‘Orange’. It seems, he didn’t learn the lessons imparted to him by that movie. If the stories are to be believed, 3 crores were spent on the Bamboo fight sequence. From my side, I would put it down as an apocryphal story. If it is indeed true, there would be a reputation that would be precede Ram Charan from hereon and it would be that of a man who makes the producer splurge

 

On numerous occasions in the movie, we are reminded of the lineage of the hero. It gets to the nerves after sometime. The self-indulgence is unwarranted. The movie seems more like an experiment, an experiment to ascertain whether Ram Charan can carry the burden of a bad movie. The results are out to be seen. He can’t.

 

Coming to the movie itself, it refuses to move. The first half is spent on elevating the image of the protagonist and as is the norm, there is an interval bang. Flashback, peeling the layers of the story(?), mass song, and the final bang are all there. The problem is, they are all stuffed in the last half an hour of the movie. It is when you see movies like this, that you realise the importance of a good director and his capabilities. These kind of movies need a protagonist that won’t fail the script. Sadly, Ram Charan doesn’t look the part, yet.

 

  • Ram Charan, clearly holds Magadheera close to his heart. The initial few sequences, a montage in the first song, his chest thumping sequences are pointers to that. He looks at ease when dancing and mouthing powerful dialogues. His comic timing, sadly, is non-existent. Amongst all the heroes, who are considered to be challengers to the number one throne, Ram Charan has had the first shot and it comes unstuck. What he needs to do, is to go back to the shed and hone a few acting skills. The aura, and therefore the pressure of being a megastar’s son will wear off after a few movies. It is then that he needs to fall back on his own skills, which at the moment seem too raw. One more advice for him will be to stay away from imitating and remaking his father’s hits. The remixed version of Vaana Vaana pales in comparison to the original. The pair in this song doesn’t quite match up to Chiranjeevi and Vijayashanti. These are the tangibles that are not taken into account by the makers. Well, he still has the burden of Zanjeer on his back

 

  • What is left in Tammana that is not seen by us? She has shown us as much as a U/A certificate would allow. It’s a pity, because she is a good performer as evidenced by her performances in 100% love and Happy Days. She has nothing to do to do in the movie. There are shades of Oosaravelli characterisation in this movie. She is much better at performing, than at swaying her hips. Hopefully, Endukkante Premantha will get her back to better times

 

  • Sampath Nandi. The less talked about him, the better. How he could get this story through multiple filters in the Chiranjeevi family will remain a mystery. It is difficult to see him getting to direct a star in the near future.

 

  • Finally, the producers. They started a movie called Merupu and it was shelved midway. This movie is sure to incur losses and it will be added to the expenses that they incurred on that non-starter. Looks like Ram Charan will have to forego his remuneration for this movie too. One question that I want to pose is, the body that Ram Charan built up in Miami was for Merupu or Racha?