In 2003, for Sankranthi, there was this big ticket release called ‘Okkadu’. I saw that movie on the first day. After the initial few minutes, I was so immersed in the movie that I didn’t notice the time and was surprised that Interval came soon. The credit for that feeling is entirely to the brilliant screenplay.
I had a similar feeling when I saw Uyyala Jampala today. The interval came too fast and when I checked the watch, it was only around sixty minutes from the start. It takes a lot of effort to put your thoughts on paper into action. The director seems to have put that effort. He resisted the temptation of extending the movie beyond the duration of what it is now.
The story is a simple ‘bava-maradallu’ story. There are no twists nor denouements. No soliloquys nor monologues. It doesn’t have a crest nor a trough. It has been a long while that we have seen a movie in Telugu that doesn’t have the above mentioned specifics attached to it. If we have to force ourselves to draw similes, then the movie can be compared to fresh breeze.
What is amazing is the fact that the director Virinchi Varma seems to be aware of all these things and, in fact, considered them to be a positive for the movie. None of the characters that appear on screen let the director down. Each and every person seemed apt for the role. One of the best pointers for that would be the lady playing the servant’s role. In the scene where she informs Uma Devi (Anandi’s name in the movie) about the cancellation of her marriage with Bujji, it does seem that there would be no one else performing that scene better than her.
Raj Tarun, the hero in the movie, resembles Sanjay Bhargava to an extent, but I am sure that the careers would be entirely different. Raj Tarun seems to be a man with a lot of potential. He performs very well and his squeaky voice is indeed an asset to him. It is difficult to believe that this is his debut movie. He doesn’t have the woodenness that’s usually attached with the debutants.
Anandi is a girl that’s known to a lot of women. She has acted in a popular serial. I have always felt that TV actors have an advantage- no emotion seems to beyond them and Anandi does solidify that belief of mine. She, like Raj Tarun, doesn’t make the audience feel for a moment that it’s her debut movie. She seems to emote well and is blessed with eyes that convey every single feeling.
The two people who portrayed the part of Raj Tarun’s friends, each have a scene where they bring the house down with humour. If one of the friends has this long scene of clicking a picture of Anandi, the other plays more than an accomplice when Raj Tarun goes and talks to the mother of a suitor and spoils the match.
The girl who played the role of Anandi’s friend is also very good. Amongst others Anita Chowdary, as the mother of Raj Tarun, trumps in a scene where she explains love to her niece.
The locations are keeping in tune with the mood of the movie. Shot in Konaseema, the director and cinematographer don’t seem to be in a tearing hurry to showcase the best of the region. Instead, they rely on basics and show the normal things well. The director captures the essence of the region very well. The language that the hero speaks is so East Godavari. The sarcasm laced with humour is something that the people from that region are said to be blessed with and the hero seems to have a lot of that.
During the titles, it was endearing to see the producers associated with the movie to dedicate the movie to their daughters or to the women in their family
Verdict: A must watch. A director’s movie from the beginning to the end.