Manam movie review

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While speaking at the Manam Sangeetham function, Nagarjuna said, “My father made his debut in 1944. It means that he was involved with the film industry for 70 years. The Movie industry has been in existence for 100 years (sic)”. The statement didn’t hit the nail then, but it did when I was watching the movie. I saw Mechanic Alludu in 1993. 21 years later, I was watching Manam. The man in question- Akkineni  Nageswara Rao acted in both the movies. The energy levels did certainly decrease, but the passion towards his craft didn’t.

 

This movie was the most awaited in Telugu Film Industry. The primary reason being there were three generations of the same family acting in the same movie- the second time this has happened in the movie industry in India. Vikram Krishna, bore the burden of an Atlas and delivered!

 

The song “Edhi Prema” sung by Hari Charan, has the lines, “Kani Penchina maa ammake, ammayannu ga. Nadipinchina maa nanakke, nannayannu ga”. These lines capture the mood of the movie brilliantly. If we sit down to narrate the movie to someone, it might not have the same effect on him/her as watching the movie would. When you listen, a lot of the sequences might appear contrived but while watching the same on the screen, it might tug at your heartstrings.

 

Nagarjuna had the meatiest of the roles in the movie and was brilliant. His chemistry with Samantha was crackling. Shriya Saran was the designated heroine for him and their episodes were shot brilliantly, especially the parts where Shriya plays the deglamourised part. Is it even possible to make Nagarjuna look anything but glamorous? The parts with Samantha are some of the best in the movie and as mentioned before their chemistry was crackling. It is entirely down to the vision of the director that the scenes looked brilliant on the screen.

 

Naga Chaitanya has the next meatiest role in the movie. He has improved a lot and looked the part in both the roles he played in the movie. His chemistry with his grandfather and father can surprise a lot of us. He looked so at ease while performing with them that it was surprising. Hope this movie will act as a springboard for him to better roles in the future. It looked as if he had a blast shooting for the “Piyo Piyo re” song. Probably Ram Gopal Varma summed it up the best for him

 

Samantha has appeared in what is her best performance to date. She is good in her parts with Naga Chaitanya and brilliant in her scenes with Nagarjuna. It would take a lot from her to eclipse this effort of hers in her upcoming movies.

 

Shriya also performed well in both the roles and the entire marriage episode with Nagarjuna has to be amongst the best scenes in the movie.

 

ANR has the least role in the movie, but leaves you impacted the most. Most of his dialogues in the movie have a profound feeling to it . If there are three generations of the family in the movie, am sure there are four generations of a family watching the movie. That, in a nutshell, encapsulates what ANR means to the Telugu Film Industry. As the promotion of the movie said, ANR lives on.

 

Anoop Ruben gave good audio for the movie and his BGM was also very good. Harshvardhan wrote some very good dialogues for the movie. They both were the ideal foils for the captain of the ship, the director. When you see the movie, you would realize the attention to detail that the director paid. There is a sequence where Naga Chaitanya draws anklets on a monkey on the wall. It serves as a perfect recall from what had happened earlier. We have earlier been witness to attempts where we were introduced to jargon like chaos theory, butterfly effect and such terms. Here they used the words ‘Cosmic Balance’, and it is easy to interpret the idea as the director made it easy for us.

 

Amala and Akhil make guest appearances in the movie. It would be criminal to call Akhil’s part as a guest role as the makers themselves said that it was the debut of their ‘Sisindri’. Let it be said that Akhil looks the part of a hero and probably has the best introduction scene of any scion from any Indian film industry

 

Verdict: It’s a top effort by the director backed by spectacular performances by the cast

 

Pic Courtesy: idlebrain.com