A brilliant take on the song

Anti-Sceptic

In the kneel-down world of romantic love, it is still rare, and special, to have a woman propose to a man.

The love of a gent is often like a stampede of elephants – a torrent of passion and action. A fleeing pachyderm doesn’t have time or a face to lose. But a woman likes to keep her desires, like the rest of her life, secreted in her heart, all nuanced and layered. She often lets the man mouth the covenant first, if only as a way to bind him to a lifelong disownment of his polygamist genes.

So, when a woman decides to stop the clueless man in his tracks and tell him of her love, she commits an extraordinary act of bravery. How strong her commitment must be, how determined her will to be with him, that she overcomes the natural inhibitions of her gender, risks rejection and…

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Seethama Vakitllo Sirimalle Chettu review

wp-17svsc1280Have you ever been to your grandparents place and had a look at the albums in their house? In most cases, the chances are that the pictures are sequestered according to the age of their children. You would certainly notice that the picture of one of your parents will be on the same page as their siblings. All of them passport size photographs, mind you. This is the one realisation that hits you as the titles are rolling. It unfolds in the form of an album.

 

While entering the theatre, I overheard a couple of friends conversing. One of them said, “For a movie to hit a chord with the audience, they should envisage themselves in the shoes of the protagonist or there should be something exceptional in the content of the movie”. He was not far from the truth. Credit then to the director that he takes this principle and turns it over. As the scenes unfold you have a feeling that actually warms your heart and makes you feel that you have been through these feelings before.

 

Srikanth Addala, the director, at the audio function of the movie said that it was beyond him to develop the character of Prakash Raj and he had to take the help of a senior writer to actually develop the character. Prakash Raj does play a pivotal role. He owns the climax of the movie with his performance.

 

Jayasudha lives up to her moniker of ‘Sahaja Nati’. Her performance throughout remains straight, but for one scene. The scene where Mahesh Babu confronts her about the attitudes in the family, is where she brings out the best of herself.

 

Venkatesh plays the role of the eldest child in the family. His inability to come to terms with the world and its ways had to be projected with as few words as possible. He does it with his expressions. The scenes that he has with Mahesh Babu are well made and the fact that he is the elder brother shines through in each of those scenes.

 

Mahesh Babu, post the sabbatical has been a brilliant actor. He infuses life into every character that he plays these days. The Godavari accent, a mature outlook and the love for family are easily handled by the reigning superstar of Telugu Film Industry. He lives out the chauvinistic dreams of every youngster when he spurns the advances of women. His character shade is that of an egoistic person which is evident in his scenes with Venkatesh and Samantha.

 

Anjali without doubt has to be find of this movie. To hold her own against stalwarts and superstars is no mean task. She does it with aplomb and impresses one and all with her performance. She is as pivotal to the movie as Prakash Raj. It is through her that the director conveys the relationship between the brothers.

 

Samantha doesn’t have a lot to do, but her expression of ‘Bonga Moothi’ will surely gain credence as the days pass.

Rao Ramesh is the closest that any character comes to being an antagonist. He does well. Kota Srinivasa Rao, Rama Prabha, Tanikella Bharani and others have lesser roles but they do well.

 

People are complimenting the heroes for accepting to star in a multi-starrer. They should be commended for choosing this movie rather than an action drama. One can say that they have put their stardom to right use through this movie, not in the movie.

 

Last but not the least, Srikanth Addala has done a brilliant job. If we actually nit-pick through the movie, we will find that he employs a lot of characters and doesn’t use them effectively. Although I wasn’t impressed with his first movie in terms of casting, I surely felt it was a good movie when the family scenes were on. That he goes on and makes an entire film on a family is playing to his strengths. That he made a movie with two contemporary stars without the fans haggling on the screen time is a feather in his cap.

Naayak movie review

wp-4naayak1366Each one amongst us had yearned to be in our dad’s shoes when we were kids. Be it wearing his shirt, shaving stealthily with his razor, wearing his helmet and fondly rubbing the name plate bearing his name. Though it was fun, the effect wears off after some time. We looked like undersized comedians, had multiple cuts on the face, realised we need to learn to drive a bike and, most important of them all, learnt we needed to work to gain recognition.

 

It is easy being Megastar’s son. Fans and screen presence are a readymade gift. When commercial success follows the early films, sky is the limit. At the audio function of Naayak, Chiranjeevi said that the days of Ram Charan emulating him are done. He is blazing a path of his own. There is truth in that statement. Ram Charan takes his dancing to another level in the first song of the movie, draws hoots from most of the people while gyrating to the item number and impresses fans with ‘mass movements’ in the pre-climax song. He fails in the song that puts him in direct comparison with his father- the remix of Subhalekha Rasukunna.

 

Where the father was graceful and elegant in movements, the son appears to be hurried. That might just be me, because am yet to get my mind off Chiranjeevi. I can vividly describe the beauty of the original, but can never remember the remix because of the wrong selection of the male singer. Oh, Thaman!

 

Coming to the script it does what it had to do in first half- entertain and set the premise up for the story to flow in the second half. The movie has a flow in the second half, but the role portrayed by Ram Charan jars the proceedings a bit. He plays a role too big for himself and the uncomfortability shows at places.

 

It perhaps happens only in the Telugu film industry that a director needs to do the things that he repeatedly does in order to prove his class instead of making a movie out of his comfort zone. So, Vinayak borrows heavily from his previous movies like Dil, Lakshmi, Tagore and Krishna. These things go a long way in adding to the ‘mark’ of movies made with him at the helm.

 

The heroines have nothing to do in the movie. Brahmanandam, Jayaprakash Reddy and Posani contribute a lot to the humour in the movie. Others like Pradeep Rawat, Dev Gill and Sudha do their normal thing.

 

It is one thing to have low budget and hence low production values, but it is entirely another thing to have a huge budget and your production values are nothing to write home about. Maybe people could gauge them from the trailers itself as I received a tweet which said

 

They are more apparent when you watch the movie. Having Calcutta Times in Haridwar with numerous copies is a problem. So is the fact that the hoarding behind the actors reads ‘Cine Planet, Kompally’ when they are supposed to be watching it in Kolkata.

 

The movie might make big bucks, but to retain the movie in our memory two-three months after today would be tough. The least that can be said is; we have seen the actors and the director doing better before this movie.

 

 

 

The enigma of Shaun Marsh

semIt’s said that first impression is a lasting impression. Shaun Marsh, would disagree with the saying. He made a good impression on both his ODI debut and Test debut, but finds himself out of reckoning in both the formats.

Making his ODI debut after a successful IPL season, he acquitted himself well. He scored a polished 81 in that match. That the debut came 5 years after Steve Waugh picked him to be a special player is a surprise. After that match, he went through a normal run in the Sheffield Shield and didn’t come into the collective notice of the selectors till the breakthrough IPL performance

Looking at his career, one thing is prominent. He finds it difficult to maintain good form over a period of time. In fact, every good innings of his is a microcosm of his career. His knock of 85 (against Melbourne Renegades), spread over 52 balls showed us the reluctant starter, the team man, the excellent reader of the match situation and also, at times, a man who can’t will himself on for the long run.

At the beginning of the innings, he was happy to stand at the non-striker’s end and let Gibbs handle the task of providing an aggressive start to the innings. When Finch, Renegades captain, brought himself into the attack, he was all at sea against him. He struggled to get bat onto the balls that were speared onto his pads.

When each and every aspect of that innings is dissected, you would find that he played shots that were hit straight down the ground. The first boundary of Sheridan, the sixes off Samuels and Finch and the way he rotated the strike, everything pointed to a man who was at the top of his game. In fact, he was hitting Finch off the deliveries that he found difficult to put a bat on early in the innings

Australian supporters of cricket know better, because they didn’t hype the innings. They knew that Shaun was bound to fizzle out after an effervescent performance. And he did live up to their expectations. They have multiple examples of this phenomena that they simply stopped bothering

If one saw him in his first two innings in Sri Lanka (Tests) and that resolute 44 in the first innings at Cape Town, it would have difficult to believe that his career would careen to the depths that it inhabits now.

With two slots opening up in the middle order, it was indeed pitiable that the name of Shaun Marsh didn’t figure in the discussions. He has himself to blame for this. His record of indiscipline and an injury prone back are held up against him every time a good knock of his surfaces.

If he wants to retain a spot in the Australian team, his brief is simple; do something that he hasn’t been able to do for the last 12 years: be consistent