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Sambho Shiva Shambho Part-I

December 6, 2013

Shambho Shiva ShamboTelugu cinema has enough love stories in the era gone by,present and more to come in future.but wondering down the line ,you as a viewer would feel how come every story has only love but no meaning or purpose.Here comes amidst all those questions a good and powerful story that makes one to think what all these years love has been projected to be and why its failing when its in nascent stage.

Taking from its original Naadodigal which was a hit in Tamil cinema and remade in all other languages(Telugu,Kannada,Malayalam,Bengali,Hindi) you can understand the essence of the story from this very point.While every love story that is made is set to make the viewer understand how the couple fall in love and make their way for love.This Story stands apart from the usual contemporary stories and shows like every story its a usual one but the quest for why love is not standing long enough between modern day couples and  what is breaking them apart.One would get a reality check from this very story.moving on….

Karunakar(Ravi Teja),Malli ( Allari Naresh) and Chandu (Siva Balaji) are close friends living nearby in a middle class colony in a small town in Rajahmundry. Each one has their own set of goals to achieve but yet no one is selfish in their own part.Karunakar has his goal of getting a government job so that he can marry his cousin Manamma(Priyamani)this condition is put by mani’s father(Bharani)so that he can marry her.Karuna tells Bharani that he likes his honesty.Chandu wants to start a computer institute so that he can settle and marry Pavithra(Abhinaya) who is Karunakar’s sister.While karunakar is aware of her sister’s proximity towards chandu,he usually turns a blind eye towards them having confidence in both his friend and sister.

Karunakar and Pavithra live with their grandmother and parents.His father taunts him for not getting a police job. In one such sequence his father asks pavithra when was independence achieved?.Pavithra tells that she does not keep unimportant things in her mind.Her father supports her.Karuna disapproves him and asks him who were the grandfathers and their ancestors. to this he does not have a answer.karuna tells all the names and surprises everyone.he tells that these days youth don’t remember such things but only about computer and other tech stuff.which is very much true.While chandu lives with his father who dotes on him.his father also supports his love for pavithra by helping him in proposing her at the college.Malli is a comic relief.he is very much fond of prasadam offered at temples and in one such attempt loses his passport form.Yet he too has a serious goal to fly abroad for which he needs a passport.but unlike Karuna and Chandu.Malli does not have affable family members.as his father (Kota Srinivas Rao) has married another woman after he lost his wife. Kota tries to enact so he scolds him for not being responsible in front of his wife as if he is mistreating his son.but otherwise he loves him so much and supports him by giving money even after his son’s repeated failed attempts to file a passport application.In one such situation Malli tells his father as to how many days he will enact like this.one can see how a father loves a son so much but cannot show due to external factors around him.

Of all the three Malli is outright in nature.He speaks his heart and does not think twice before saying anything to anyone.In a way he is innocent.while chandu is normal.The most balanced one and quick at action is Karuna,who is a dare devil.Mani always is in a playful mood with her Bava(Karuna)she does everything possible to make him happy.The chemistry between the duo is natural.Like every Telugu inti Bava Mardalu, Ravi and Priya put up a decent play. She is supported by Karuna’s nanamma who suggests her on how to impress her bava with different sweets and eatables.

Santhosh meeting karunakar, Malli and chandu

Santhosh meeting karunakar, Malli and chandu

Meanwhile Karuna’s childhood friend Santhosh(Surya Teja) lands at his house.On knowing that karuna is not at his home.He goes near the railway bridge in Rajahmundry where he meets him and also chandu and malli.Karuna tells his friends how close both were right from sharing same food,same bed,clothes till seeing same girl.There were same in all aspects.Malli requests santhosh to swim along with them.he refuses saying he doesn’t know how to swim.they take him to the village carnival.There is a local leader who aspires to grow politically in that region Chitti Naidu (Krishna Bhagvan) who boasts about helping everybody in the form of his posters and ads in that area.

Chitti naidu

Chitti naidu

He helps people but in turn publicizes his helping nature to gain political mileage.In one such encounter the trio(Karuna,chandu,malli) bash him up and leave an unpleasant experience in the village carnival.
Meanwhile a police officer comes to Malli’s house.But Kota thinks his son might have done something wrong for which he came. Malli comes and gets to know that the officer has come to verify his passport details.Quite enthusiastically he answers all questions.The viewers are left in splits as one gets to know the reason.but after the officer leaves,malli tells his father that instead of trying to insult him,why doesn’t he kill him by giving some poison.Kota feels bad as he misunderstood his son.

Karuna gets a call letter for the next level in his exams.Mani lands up at his home and she taunts his mother that she is not giving any food to karuna as he has become very weak. his mother also taunts her that all days she keeps eating whatever she makes for him and both end up face to face.karuna interferes and stops their cat fight. Mani gets to know that karuna has a interview on 26th of the month for next level.she is happy but only to be disappointed that there is still a long way to go.Here Chandu gets his formalities done for getting the loan and happily sets on for a ride with his girl friend.

Here at this juncture malli’s passport is on his way,karuna is only one interview away from getting his dream job(Government) so that he can marry his cousin. And Chandu also gets his loan cleared.When all three are so close in achieving their desired goals there is a simple yet interesting twist that comes our way. Normal audience would be puzzled as to what could be the so called turn.And yet truly as the story turns interesting from this juncture.

Santhosh being resued

Santhosh being resued

Santhosh the childhood friend of karuna stands atop of the Rajahmundry Railway Bridge and jumps into the Godavari river.Malli and his friend who is beside him is alerted and malli too jumps into the water to rescue him.Chitti Naidu who is there on the shore sees all this and sets off with a rescue boat.Meanwhile karuna and chandu too hearing this set on another boat.By the time karuna,chandu and malli reach santhosh.He is rescued by Chiiti’s men. Karuna slaps malli for taking him along as he does not know how to swim. but malli tells him that he did not fall by mistake or was not thrown by anyone.,e wantedly jumped to end his life,which surprises everyone. Santhosh is brought up on the boat and is hanged upside down and is being swinged so that the water inside comes out. All three sigh in relief.

Malli then shouts upon Santhosh saying that his life has almost gone. What would be his answer if people would question him about his whereabouts.Also he reckons that Karuna who has not slapped him since childhood has first time slapped him because of him. here we can get a glimpse of what malli is about he lets his anger in a true manner like anyone would do without hiding any emotion. Upon questioning the reason behind his extreme step Santhosh tells them that he has loved a girl and ever since wanted to be with her.All three look Surprisingly happy.As if they wanted to be in that situation.He narrates to them how initially it was difficult and after he jumps into a lake, she also starts reciprocating his feelings on seeing his sincere love towards her.

As he narrates this.Malli tells that ” Eee Ammayina padalsinde.” EE Strory ayina elage untundi” to this chandu asks him to keep his mouth shut.Santhosh tells that his story is now known to both their parents and that Prabha(Santhosh Lover) is in her house. and his mother(Roja) is seeking the alliance of central minister. Santhosh tells Karuna that he loves Prabha Deeply and if both them are married to different people then both would die eventually.To this Karuna and other two take serious note of his words.Karuna scolding Santhosh

Karuna tells him for this small thing he has to die like this? “Edaina Bathiki Sadhinchali”…”Prapachamlo evaraina ee dhairyam tho premistharoo telsaa? Preminchaka valani Support cheydaniki,kalapadaniki manalanti friends untarani..” and he assures Him that his marriage will be Done!.Karuna assures to help Santhosh

Karuna makes all arrangements to get Santhosh married to his Girl.Pavithra offers money to Chandu.saying that.
“Repu manaki edaina sahayam kavalante evaraina ilage help chestaru kadha” chandu says”Mana pelli ki ilanti problem em undadu”..
All four set for Kurnool
All four set off on the vehicle and Malli enquires as to where they are going.On knowing that they are going to Kurnool.he says “Rayalaseema lo unde Kurnool aa?”. “Avnu” says chandu. Malli: “Pere intha danger ga undentraaa…??!!!”
Here our Rayalaseema holds a special place for faction and love. where on one side you have love on the same side you have faction and how many stories have evolved and who has won will always be a question.

After a tired and long Overnight journey they reach Kurnool on the wee hours of morning.All four sit down for a cup of tea.In between Karuna gets a call from his Friend Nani(Sunil)As They come to know that he works in a hotel.they think their work is done and assure santhosh about his marriage.Nani on receiving his friends learns about their shocking plan and questions about their Nani shocked by their plansknowledge on the people they are about to encounter.Karuna Tells nani that Santhosh is the son of Bhavani(Roja) Ex MP.Nani asks, why cant you talk peacefully.
To this malli replies.”Matlade samsye ledu.akada manakosam 100 mandi vethukuthunaru”.
Nani:”eviti manakosama? nenepudu milo cheranu ra???
Malli: “Ipudu Kalisam ga..” Nani is shocked!
Malli: “ikanunchi memchese prati manchi chedu pani lo niku saga bhagam undi! nuve ma gang leader vi!”

A car stops in front of the hotel.Nani tells all four that if you want to go safely from this place then don’t utter a word till that person goes out and tells that the person is Narsimha Reddy’s driver.

Malli asks “Driver ki intha build up aa?? vadi mokham mida enti anni pichi geethalu unnai??
Nani says: “Picchi geethalu kadu ra katthi potulu”
Karuna keeps watching and Nani asks them as he is about to leave where he is going. Karuna replies:”Pelli Sambhandam matladostha!”
Nani fears and Karuna gets into the car with the driver.He goes till the factory of Narsimha Reddy and meets him.He asks if he is interested to sell old cars as he has started a company to buy old cars then remodel and sell them.Narsimha tells him that he is not interested in new things and always like old things as old is gold. Narsimha then asks him if he is from east? karuna replies he is from Rajahmundry. Narsimha says his accent made him to think like that.

All five gather and think about the plan to take the girl.while Nani is tense about how they four will execute. Malli tells him that he is also going to be part of their plan.Hearing this Nani is shocked.they will plan to execute that night itself.While the three of them are at the house of the girl.

Malli gets caught

Malli gets caught

Malli is forced to go inside,while other two wait outside.Not aware that a dog is inside of the house malli jumps and finds himself in front of the dog.while the dog chases him he is being caught by the security men and is handed to Narsimha .Narsimha confronts malli.He comes to know that he is a thief who came to steal small items.Thus narsimha offers some money and warns him not to be seen again.With this malli gets a sigh of relief and tells his friends that narsimha seems to be a nice man.On hearing this nani is astonished.he says after i came to know that you were going i was surprised and on hearing that you were caught by them my heart almost stopped functioning.He pleads them to stop at this point and leave.He says it is all because of that guy Santhosh that their lives are at risk.he(Nani) is in no way concerned in this matter.

Karuna says “Vadu mammalni nammi vachadu anduke memu Vocham!”
“Memu pattukundi katthi ani telsu!, adi gutchukuntundi ,raktham vostundi ani kuda telsu!ayina sare danni vonchadame gane vodile samasye ledu!”

Nani says:Vodalakandi ra vodalakandi… kani nanuu vodileyandi raa!!”
Karuna: Orey Nani…
Nani: Sare Kani…

Bhavani Enquiring about her sonNext day Morning, Bhavani(Roja) finds about his son’s whereabouts and doubts that Narsimha might have kidnapped him.She is quite tense when she gets a call from police department, that her son is in Kurnool itself.She orders her men to be infront of Narsimha’s house and track their moments.While narsimha and his men come out of their house.Bhavani’s men follow them.Also behind bhavani’s men are the trio who chase them behind in an auto.All four Set on their MissionThe trio along with santhosh go to the Ahobilam temple where Narsimha along with his family and  his daughter Prabha come. From here the story takes an interesting leap. But Viewers should wait for the next part as to see what unfolds for the trio. Will they be successful in kidnapping the girl? and Nani who is extremely afraid of Narsimha and his people would he be caught or will he escape?
Well even i am curious too.. meet you in the next Part.

Celebrating 100 Golden Years of Indian Cinema..

May 3, 2013
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Note: This article is written by Sharath Kumar Gaddameedi, an avid follower of Indian as well as Foreign Cinema..we, the authors of Marapuraani Chitralu thank him for this informative piece of write up.

India’s 1st full length feature film Raja Harishchandra completes 100 years on Friday (May 3, 2013). Directed by Dadasaheb Phalke, Raja Harishchandra was released on May 3, 1913 after it was premiered on 21 April 1913 at the Olympia Theatre. The run time of the silent film was around 40 minutes and was exhibited with one print in a single theater Coronation Cinema Hall, Goregaon (North Mumbai).

 

Dadasaheb Phalke is regarded as the Father of Indian Cinema. Phalke was a visionary gifted enough to foresee the awesome potential of the film medium almost a century ago. Phalke’s film ‘Raja Harishchandra’ was not the first ever Indian film.

Dadasaheb Phalke, the founding father of Indian Cinema, was born on April 30, 1870 at Trimbakeshwar near Nasik in the Maharashtra state of India. Named as Dhundiraj Govind Phalke by his Sanskrit scholar parents, Phalke developed a passion for creative arts from a young age and enrolled at the Sir J.J. School of Arts, Bombay in 1885.

The Dadasaheb Phalke Award is the most prestigious award in the realm of Indian cinema. Named after Dadasaheb Phalke, the pioneer of Indian film industry, the award is bestowed to honor distinguished contribution to the growth and promotion of the film medium.Inline image 1

 

Harishchandrachi Factory is a 2009 Marathi film, directed by Paresh Mokashi, depicting the struggle of Dadasaheb Phalke in making Raja Harishchandra in 1913.

 

Dadasaheb Phalke award winners from Telugu film Industry

P.S: Credit to the amazing contributors for Indian Cinema in http://i-heart-cinema.tumblr.com. for making this excellent work of animation in the beginning of this article.

Funny Divine-Human Encounters and Entertainment – Jagadeka Veerudu Athiloka Sundari Part 2

April 21, 2013

Chiranjeevi as Raju

Till part 1 of the entertainment centric movie post, we just saw the beginnings of the scope in which Commercial Cinema can take us. The best of it marks its beginning when Indraja (Sridevi), the daughter of Lord Indra returns to Planet Earth to get back her magical ring from Raju (Chiranjeevi) in a tactful manner.  Being to her obvious divine self, Indraja feels the task is quite simple, and takes matter of minutes for her mission to be accomplished. The first encounter of Indraja happens with Raju at Borra Caves area in a hilarious way! The scene unfolds in such a way where Raju tries to explain the history of the Emperor Rajasimha to his tourist customers and in a timely way the tourists hear the laughter and movements of Indraja- eventually misunderstanding her to be a ghost!

Raju glances at Indraja along with his Kannada Tourist Customers

Raju loses his customers on account of this and he gets quite furious looking at Indraja for the first time. Looking at her mythological styled attire and jewellery, he mistakes her to be a drama artiste and tries to get rid of her immediately. The way Indraja calls Raju “Maanava” (“Oh Human Being!”) and the latter reacting to the same saying “Aa Pilupu Maanava” (“Won’t you stop calling me like that?”) in an irritable manner is a treat to watch! Thanks to Jandhyala garu who made best use of the word Maanava in both noun and verb forms when used by Indraja and Raju respectively at a brilliant level of comedy

Poor Indraja- who gets shocked by the indignance of Raju in not being kind to her gets more determined to get him back in good books. In the course of it she chases back Raju and his kid group hoping to get some whereabouts about where he lives.

It is now time to introduce the most comical police duo played by the veteran Tamil comedian Janakiram and his assistant named Maalokam who are too funny and naïve as far as finding criminals is concerned. The most interesting aspect of this duo is the sentences they speak on. Their conversations in this film became so popular that people use the same even now when similar situation comes in real life! Whenever the assistant acts too clever in finding out something important- Janakiram says “Ekkadiko Vellipoyavu Maalokam” (You have gone far ahead, Maalokam!) in his amazing dialogue delivery and the assistant innocently replies to it saying “Ounu Sir, Swarga Lokapu Anchulu Daakaa Vellipoyanu Sir!” (Yes Sir, I have even reached the end of Heavens’ Gate!).

The Police duo comes to know that certain Princess from Sambhalpur has gone missing and they would get Prize Money for the same. At the very moment they happen to see Indraja (Looking too obvious to be a princess!) and try to follow her up. In the course they catch another guide, played by Allu Ramalingaiah. The scenes between these three terrific comedians are worth watching in the movie than being described in the post!

Innocent Indraja at Raju's House Flabbergasted Raju.

Coming back to the main storyline , Indraja finds out Raju’s house with great difficulty and it so happens that when the members in the house are ready to eat, our dear Indraja also sits innocently along with them. Raju gets flabbergasted seeing Indraja in his house and asks her to leave at the very instant. When his attempts run futile he even calls his pet dog (Named Alladdin!) but due to the divine powers of Indraja, even that attempt becomes a failure. The kids start requesting Raju to let Indraja stay with them, as they feel she is too sweet to have around! It is now time for Jandhyala to take the front seat in the dialogues department when Raju and Indraja start a conversation about food. The wonderful imagination on how a person from Heavens and a normal middle class Human being from Telugu household speak is shown amazingly in this sequence!

Indraja's Magic..

Scene 1:

 

 Indraja looks at Rice, and Brinjal curry being served to her in a plate and being totally foreign to such cuisine, she asks Raju this way:

Indraja: “Ee Davala Varna Padardhamemi Maanava?”

“Oh Human, what is this white coloured material?”

Raju (Quite irritated with such questions!): “  Daanini Annam antaru,Ye intha kaalam gaddi gaadham thini brathikava?”

“That is Rice!Why so?You have been eating grass or stuff like that all these years?”

Indraja, Looking at Brinjal and asking more innocently..

“Idhemi maanava?”

“What is this?”

Raju (Irritation reached to heights!): “Adhi..Vankaya!”

“That is Brinjal!”

Indraja, still unable to believe that it is something to be eaten, asks

“Deenini Em Cheyavale?”

“What should I do with this?”

Raju: “Daanini Notlo pettukuni Koruku!”

“Keep that in mouth and give it a bite!”

Poor Indraja does as said and gets shocked with the spicy food and starts yelling in anguish!

This is Jandhyala’s way of saying that AP Cuisine is challenging even to people who come from Divine Lands!

Looking at the way Indraja speaking and the interactions, Raju comes to the obvious conclusion that Indraja is somebody who is mentally ill and needs to be taken to her family members very soon. He devises a plan thinking of giving a Missing advertisement on newspaper by taking her picture and in that way, she can be sent back to her family!

Funny Photograph of Indraja with Raju and party..

When even that attempt gets failed as the picture taken by Vichitra Kumar (Brahmanandam), a crazy Photographer in town comes off totally blank, Raju gets more furious with Indraja’s presence at home. Time for some heroic deeds come to picture now, as he brings out the wrong doings at a local casino run by some bad guys in the town. The casino group chases Raju and party, leaving them helpless but to seek refuge at a Recording dance hall and the funniest part is to see Raju and Indraja disguise as Recording dance artists. The best part comes when our duo start dancing in a funny way leading to the most popular song in Telugu Cinema ever (As far as Melody and Commercial element in perfect balance is concerned) Yamaho appears for the visual and musical delight!

Raju and Indraja ready for the Recording dance disguise!

The song is well picturized (despite some unavoidable presence of Fruits and flowers in K.Raghavendra Rao songs), but nicely choreographed as well. Chiranjeevi and Sridevi look too perfect for each other as they complement wonderfully in dance!

Watch the music perfect song below:

The local rich aristocrat Das (Played by Kannada Prabhakar) gets very angry with his business getting affected. Things turn in such a way that Raju and Indraja challenge Das yet again in a party and even make the villain gang dance for their tunes singing a song “Dinakkutha”.

Watch the graceful dance steps of Chiranjeevi and Sridevi for this song below! Trivia says that Chiranjeevi was having 102 degree fever during this shoot and it is amazing to see that was not reflected at all in the video! SPB does wonderful job in singing exactly like Chiranjeevi, and rendering the dialogues as well in between!

Oh yes! Indraja has not forgotten her mission of getting her ring back from Raju, and she tries in every crazy way possible to get it back- but all her attempts run futile. While once we feel its too funny, but at the same time we start feeling sorry for her!

Das cannot believe himself that his power is being challenged in the town and he suspects some divine power is behind Raju’s courage and the energy in which he confronts such a rich person like him. He decides to consult a Wizard Mahadrushta (Enter the classic Wizard with negative shades-Amrish Puri!) to get some advise on the same.

Things gathered a good pace now where the good power and evil power are rising in parallel!

What happens next? Is Human will greater than Divine or magical power?

How is Humanity weighed over the tremendous magical powers which divine people possess?

What challenges Indraja faces when she starts appreciating the bold nature of Raju?

Chiranjeevi and Sridevi on the sets of the Yamaho song filming..

More to come in Part 3!

Socio-Fantasy Magic- Jagadeka Veerudu Athiloka Sundari- Part 1

January 1, 2013

JVAS-Titles..

As promised in the previous post about exploring more of Commercial Telugu Cinema in our Marapuraani Chitralu, I couldn’t find any other better occasion than the New Year’s Eve to start the same! Let it be for my personal connection, or the unavoidable influence of this film during the time of its release, or the perfect blend of Commercial elements along with wittiness, the first film which came to my mind when I thought of this area of Telugu Cinema was Jagadeka Veerudu Athiloka Sundari.

Fictional stories and folklore has been the very backbone of Telugu Cinema right from the Black and White era. They are enjoyable not only to children (Who naturally have a sense of imagination and wonder!) but even to any person alike. They are like a beautifully entertaining escape route from the tiring daily routine one faces, and have the capability to transport the viewer to a really new World, with a set of different dimensions and possibilities. Mythological fiction- a sub-branch of this area of Telugu Cinema is another vastly explored genre where some stories of Hindu Mythology are connected to the current day of living. One such film which created a wave during the mid-70s was Sr.NTR starrer Yama Gola.

Mythological Fiction gave a new dimension and different challenges to the writer as well as the director, where the sequences should not look too artificial or contrived. They have to be so plausible to view, that one should believe it is really happening in real. On the brighter side, this particular genre has a limitless scope to be extremely hilarious, as well as thought-provoking as well.

Sridevi and Chiranjeevi from JVAS..

K.Raghavendra Rao- who is called as the undisputed trendsetter in Commercial Telugu Cinema, was already in the top notch directors of that age when Jagadeka Veerudu Athiloka Sundari came into picture. His association with the phenomenal Jandhyala garu dates back to Adavi Ramudu, Vetagadu- where the mesmerizing dialogues with amazing comedy sense were written by the latter- added so much to the Commercial aspects of these films. Now it was time for Raghavendra Rao to get a trendsetting team of Commercial Cinema- Megastar Chiranjeevi in the lead, the no.1 actress (with Glamour as well as excellent acting skills) Sridevi, Maestro ILaiyaraaja for Music, Veturi in the lyrics department, and not to forget Jandhyala in the writing department.

Ashwani Dutt, the owner of Vyjayanthi Movies was the only person who could be ready for such high budget Cinema, which is based on a mythological fiction story. What really happened after the film released, is known to every Telugu Cinema viewer without any doubt at all!

Coming to the very brief story line of the film- The movie revolves around the good natured Hero Raju (Chiranjeevi) who is a tourist guide in Kondaveedu area of AP. He is good because he has the courage to fight bad happenings around him, and he looks after a group of orphan kids and takes proper care of them in every way possible. Sounds like the typical hero of Telugu Cinema? Yes. But Chiranjeevi made sure that he brought style, grace as well as tremendous unique nature to this particular character he adorned!

After the title score speaks volumes of grandeur about how huge the film is going to impact the viewer, the hero introduction song arrives immediately (True to the Commercial Cinema formula!) . But the hero Raju does not sing about how great his values are in life, but he speaks about the history of the place – true to his tourist guide profession! Shot aesthetically in Borra Caves, near Vishakapatnam area, the song is visually, musically and lyrically appealing! We get to see Baby Shamili (of Mani Ratnam’s Anjali fame) and her elder sister Shalini (Who later became a top actress in Tamil cinema) prominently in the kid group who live with Raju. It is really fascinating to see their involvement in helping out Raju to enact the Historic Story of the place!

Watch the wonderful song below!

Raghavendra Rao immediately shows one of the villains in the film Rami Reddy – to be pretty direct!! Apparently the villains plan to remove a Hanuman statue (Raju and the kids are huge devotees of Hanuman statue in the Kondaveedu town) for some financial gain. The surprise awaits (both for the viewer as well as the villains) to see Raju dressed up in Hanuman attire, coming and fighting over these people to stop the wrong happenings! The fight was entertainingly picturized, with some cool background score bits to look for. It is unbelievable that ILaiyaraaja could give such background scores even at a pure commercial cinema aspect- in such musical rich manner!

While this fight goes on, Shalini from the kids group injures herself very badly that she gets paralyzed to walk. Raju gets very upset to know that and cannot digest the news that she has to depend on crutches all her life. But being an optimistic person at heart, he continues to search for any other methods of treatment.

Raju’s plea to Lord Hanuman..

An ayurvedic sage comes as an answer to his prayers and advises Raju that a particular plant specimen can be of help in this cure. The sage also advises it is impossible to get that plant as the place is in Manasa Sarovar- a dangerously steep place in the Himalayan Mountain range.

Raju, being true to his heroic self decides to go for the dangerously fatal journey- leading to worry of the kids group. They get so worried and just because of that they won’t give up. They start singing a great devotional song “Jai Chiranjeeva” near their favourite Hanuman Statue, and we get to see the scenes of hardships which Raju is facing to reach the place in the song.

On the other hand, it is now time to introduce the female protagonist of the film- Indraja (Sridevi), the daughter of Lord of Heavens, Indra (As per Hindu Mythology). She happens to visit her father bringing on a request to visit Planet Earth, as she heard so many wonderful things about the place. Though her father first feels apprehensive in sending her to Planet Earth, he eventually agrees her daughter’s wish.

Absolutely delighted with her father’s permission, Indraja along with her friends head towards Planet Earth- and Manasa Sarovar in particular! This event exactly collides with Raju’s successful reach to the destination and it so happens that- both Raju and Indraja are in awe looking at the amazing place at the same time! The background score speaks mountains about how they feel looking at the picturesque and flawless mountain caps, and the landscape in front of them.

Sridevi- Angelic!

Yes…you have guessed it right! It is now time for a wonderful song “Andaalalo” which Indraja starts off singing in reaction to how beautiful the place looks. Raju sings the same tune witha different awe and starts collecting the plant specimen for which he did this risk for. Sridevi looks undoubtedly like an angel from heavens in this song, and Chiranjeevi is his usual cool self- as the courageous hero with the tremendous screen presence!

After a very happy trip to Planet Earth and apparently due to time constraints, Indraja heads back to the Heavens. She tries to enter the main gates of Heavens but she is unable to get in. Her father gets really worried seeing this and asks the advice of Vishwamitra and Naarada who are present along. Indraja loses her ring Manasa Sarovar where they went for the tour and says quite confidently to her father that she will get the ring back within no time, which is like a lifeline for her entry to Heavens, and possesses all the powers the divine people have. She immediately realizes watching Raju at the Manasa Sarovar area and expresses her doubt that he could have taken the ring.

Vishwamitra advises Indraja to be back as soon as possible and she has to finish the task right before Karthika Pournami (an auspicious full Moon day-according to Hindu Calendar). If not, she would lose all her powers and will be left as a normal human being back in Planet Earth.

Indraja, being quite confident doesn’t think it is a problem at all. Little does she know, how complex, problematic, and challenging is to get a task done in our Earth, that too from our hero Raju!

The best entertaining part is yet to come in part 2 of this post…

 

 

Who says Commercial Films are Forgettable?

November 11, 2012

We have come a long way in the journey of discovering and unleashing the best of Telugu Cinema in Marapuraani Chitralu. Taking a dip in the hilarious comedy of Jandhyala to begin with, the roads turned to Arts and Social Message films from K.Vishwanath, and an interesting turn with adventure (Kshana Kshanam) and a tinge of eternal love story (Geethanjali) and eventually at a humanity and philosophical juncture with Aa Naluguru..which is the path next?

Why do we watch a film?What is the most enthralling and exciting aspect of a film? While some watch a film to escape the ground realities and have fun for nearly 3 hours of its runtime..few watch for the technical aspects, subject and the performances of the actors. Commercial Cinema especially in Telugu taught the audience to think beyond the sentiments, and broke all the norms which were prevailing till a point of time (Such as Brother-Sister sentiment, weeping sequences, anti climax, tragedy and so on!) and at the same time followed some norms too! (Hero Introduction song, a pathbreaking fight, a foot tapping dance number etc!)..

Marapuraani Chitralu would surely become incomplete without the exploration of the Commercial Cinema which turned the Telugu Cinema scenario..and entertained the audience irrespective of the timeline present.. When such commercial cinema of 80s-90s is watched now..they are still as entertaining as they could be then..which brings them to the unforgettable category!

Commercial Telugu Cinema introduced us to International heroes such as Rambo, James Bond, and pop stars such as Michael Jackson which did so much good (in most sense) for the growing up kids of late 70s-early 80s era..The best aspect was that, the touch of nativity was added to these heroes (Without directly copying form the original-this comes to another debate anyway!).

Another important influence which the Commercial Telugu Cinema made was the fashion sense through the main protagonists. During the era of closely knitted atmosphere with not much of globalization, it got the advent of Jeans, Action Shoes,International dressing brands as well as new electronic gadgets to the Andhra Pradesh household!

Commercial Telugu Cinema expanded the financial potential of Telugu Cinema, at the same time maintaining the technical values, and the needful for making movies, thereby making Telugu Films eternal in every sense..

Stay tuned for the new dimension now in Marapuraani Chitralu- The Commercial Telugu Cinema!

Humanity, Love, Family and Money- Aa Naluguru- Part 3

November 7, 2012

Till part 2 of Aa Naluguru post we have seen only the preliminary troubles which Raghuram faces in his life in the form of family members, outsiders and at work. But little does he or we audience are unaware about how big the problem of his attitude turns out to be. His strict ideals about loving people and not money challenges Raghuram so much that he gets to really fight for making his soul and real nature alive till the very end- and even beyond it!

Throughout the film Raghuram believes that people at his house give value to his ideals and follow them in a sincere manner but very soon he understands its actually the other way around. To be more clear, they are torn between the ways of the world and Raghuram’s ideals about life.

The first challenge Raghuram faces in the house is through his younger son, who fails to secure a rank in EAMCET examination and demands his father to pay donation and get him a seat in Engineering. Raghuram is obviously against the idea and he clearly tells his son that he would invest money only for studying but not for buying education ( “Chaduvukovataniki Enthaina Karchu Pedathanu..Chadhuvu Kontaniki Kadhu” – a great line from our protagonist Raghuram!). The frustrated younger son starts off saying it is a sin to be born in such house where he can’t even afford to study further.

The next challenge comes from the elder son of Raghuram (Played by Raja) who requests his father to give money as a bribe for his S.I post. Despite performing well in all the tests, thanks to the Corruption in India, Raghuram’s son has to pay bribe for attaining the post. Raghuram continues in his own way of thinking saying that we must fight against the system by putting a case leading to more fury by his son. He also stresses on the point that he doesn’t want a corrupt employee from his house, and that is what his son would become if he pays a bribe and gets the post. The declining faith in Indian Judicial system was clearly shown in Raghuram’s elder son character where he bluntly says he believes only in bribe but not in courts.

Raghuram’s wife becomes the silent observer of all these incidents and just like any other middle-class mother of kids, she expects her husband to give away the money so that her children get settled in respectable positions.  But our dear protagonist is determined in fight for his values, and get totally involved in the same.

As if things cannot get more worse than this, Raghuram’s daughter along with his son-in-law come up with another proposal asking for money to head to US for a software job and settle there. If not mentioned before, Raghuram’s son-in-law is a typical unemployed youth who believes in fetching quick money and work less, by going abroad. The change of tone in Raghuram’s daughter voice at the moment when her father refuses to give money makes us think –

“Is money playing much more invisible force on every individual, including family members and friends?”.

These aforementioned scenes of word exchanges between Raghuram and his family members were shown so realistically and brilliantly by the director, and not to forget the fantastic acting performance by Rajendra Prasad as the determined protagonist who strives very hard to keep his character and ideals alive.

Sadly, the strict and honest decisions of Raghuram are totally misunderstood by his family members, including his wife (Though she is somewhat considerate about her husband). They start giving less respect to Raghuram and in one situation his daughter doesn’t even send food for her father in office. Though such scenes look quite dramatic in the first look, at one situation or other we happen to see closest of the relationships destroy just for the sake of money matters off late!

Things turn worse when Raghuram’s son-in-law devises a cruel plan along with the other frustrated individuals in the house to start a chit fund company in the former’s name and start making use of the good name. Even worse comes by when Raghuram’s children get ready for the same (Out of desperation to get what they want or for umpteen reasons!) leading to shock of Raghuram himself. He gets so furious with them and at the same time feel his views are dangerously threatened.

A very big thought process starts off in Raghuram’s mind in which he feels if money isn’t given to them, they will not look back to even do some crime and thereby losing morals.

As already known, Raghuram is such person who keeps values, and morals sky high, and at a top notch level- more than anything else. When he tries to appeal the same to his close people around (Such as wife and his best friend Subrahmanyam), they also suggest him to keep his values aside and settle his family members first.

After some deep thinking, he decides to get money from various sources (Against his will) such as Kotayya, his Muslim family friend Masthan and his boss. The scene where Raghuram admits near Kotayya that money only directs life, than relationships is really heart wrenching and even the heartless (As he is shown till just the climax of the film!) the latter feels sorry for him. Raghuram feels highly indebted to all these people who gave him timely financial help and makes a mental vow that he should never cheat on them.

One interesting view point of Raghuram is shown even at this mental turmoil he is facing here. When Kotayya makes fun of him saying the lady who asked for donation to cure her daughter suffering from cancer (Which was written about in part 2) is a cheat and the girl is not having the deadly disease, anybody else would start feeling upset that unnecessarily the money was given to the wrong person. But our Raghuram feels delighted for the reason that the little girl is not having cancer in the first place!

The scene where Raghuram returns house with money ( Leading to the utter amazement and happiness of the children and son-in law), is perhaps one of the best scenes as far as relationships and money is concerned in Telugu Cinema. Raghuram looks at the artificial happiness which the kids show when money is given to them, he starts saying the following line .It is for sure another fantastic depiction of the complex nature of money and its impact on human beings:

“Rupayi Rupayi nuvvem chesthavu ani adigithe, Harishcandrudi tho abaddham adisthanu, bharya bharthala madhhya chicchu pedathanu, thandri biddalni vidadeesthanu, annadammula Madhya vairam penchuthanu, aakhariki  prana snehithulani kooda vidagodathanu andata. Alanti rupayiki naa illu minahayimpu anukunnanu. Kani adhe rupayi naa intlo chorabadi bandhalni kilo lekka thookam vesi ammesthundhi anukoledhu. “

“When rupee is asked what you are capable of, it said it would make Harishandra(Popular character in Telugu Mythology who is known for being highly truthful) tell a lie, create a rift between husband and wife, make father and son separated, start enmity between brother and sister, and ultimately even make closest friends fight. I used to think that my house is immune to that rupee. But that rupee literally broke into my house and destroyed all the relationships and sold them off in a calculated manner”

Watch the same scene below:

After this heart wrenching scene, Raghuram feels very upset with the intrusion of money in the house. He feels so devastated that his ideals are threatened and even literally killed by his family members.

Extremely saddening situation occurs next, when Raghuram dies in sleep before he could see the next day’s Sunrise. Raghuram’s son-in-law is the first person to see her father unconscious and tells his wife about the same. Being to his cruel self, he asks his wife to remain silent and says he along with Raghuram’s sons will go anonymous for some days so that the money will be saved. Their cruel nature comes off so much at heights that Raghuram’s elder son himself says let us get rid of this situation and until the final rites are finished, it is better to be in a secret location.

Raghuram’s soul gets so furious with this scene and comes to know they are in the same city secretly in some hotel.  Kotayya and Masthan who come to know about the demise react in totally different ways (While the former is furious, the latter is devastated!) and hope that they can get the money back by asking Raghuram’s children who would be in the death ceremony.

 

The climax unfolds in a shocking way when the doctors from organ donation camp arrive to take the eyes of Raghuram’s body and come to know his death wasn’t natural but a suicide (Through a cinematic situation where a crumpled suicide note is found!). Raghuram’s wife soon realizes the good nature of her husband and understands the cruel nature of her children and starts cursing herself for not understanding him throughout his life.

On the contrary and ironically, so many people start arriving at Raghuram’s death ceremony which proves that he lived a life of love and helpful nature which earned him so much of adoration around. A Television programme also starts airing about Raghuram and it is when Raghuram’s younger son starts realizing his father’s greatness. More scenes unfold when the taxi driver of this cruel trio (Raghuram’s sons and son-in-law) stops the car in middle of the road to just follow the procession of the great man.

The final question arrives with who should perform the final rites of Raghuram. Just at the precise moment, the sons of Raghuram get to the place (against their will). Raghuram’s soul as well as the messengers from hell watch this sequence with pent up tension. Just at the moment of rites being performed, Kotayya cuts off the elder son asking to repay the money immediately and then perform the last rites. Everybody (Except Raghuram’s soul who feels extremely happy that Kotayya caught his criminal minded sons in the right time!) gets so furious about Kotayya’s behavior and start saying let us look about money matters after the rites are over.

But Kotayya is a staunch businessman who declares he will not let the rites happen until the money is given back. Then the people who are present there start giving off whatever little sum of money they have- just to make Raghuram’s value higher and regain the respect he possessed.

In the end, we come to know that Kotayya behaved the way just to make Raghuram’s children understand the greatness of their father but not for the sake of money. The acting skills of Kota Srinivasa Rao come into being here- which make us tell he is the pride of Telugu Cinema- as far as character actors are concerned!

The background song “Aa Naluguru” which arrives during this situation is another asset for the film. For its fantastic lyrics and excellent rendition by S.P.Balasubhrahmanyam.

Watch the song below:

Raghuram’s soul feels utterly happy as he was the ultimate winner- with his ideals and his life did not go wasted at all. Even after death he lived in the hearts of hundreds of people, in the form of humanity, ideals and individuality. Immediately the messengers from hell transform into divine people and take contented Raghuram’s soul into Heaven.

The last rites of Raghuram are performed by those four people – who understood his nature  throughout and hence the film’s name – “Aa Naluguru!” (Those Four people!)

Undoubtedly one of the best films in Telugu Cinema during the post 2000s era, Aa Naluguru remains to be given a prime position in the Unforgettable Telugu Cinema list!

Marapuraani Chitralu remembers Rajendra Prasad, Amani, Kota Srinivasa Rao, dialogue writer Madan and the director Chandra Siddarth- along with the complete team of Aa Naluguru. This film makes us re-think about our value system and how much the “Money” factor is influencing our way of living, in this fast paced era of post 2000s!

 

Humanity, Love, Family and Money- Aa Naluguru- Part 2

October 12, 2012

By the end of part 1 we can expect the (obvious )hardships which Raghuram is going to face, now that he is jobless. But Raghuram, being truly unique at heart and optimistic chooses something which nobody who does an editor job can imagine! Knowing very well how his family would react to his decision, he starts off working directly as a salesman of papads on the road! It does look too cinematic or idealistic for the normal audience but the way in which the director projected the scene, one does not feel odd at all!

Raghuram initially tries to sell the papads and fails very badly, owing to his inexperience in the field! The scene looks so funny as well as hopeful for the viewer as very few people would think of seeing the bright side of life even at the darkest of times!

Meanwhile a kid who is also in the papad sales business, gets furious with Raghuram’s intervention in his area and tries to (sweetly) threaten the latter.  In the due course, Raghuram and the kid become great friends and our ever optimistic Raghuram even learns the tricks in sales from his newly acquired friend! This scene also makes us realize that if one has the will to learn, the source can be the most unlikeliest as well  (Such as Kid in this context!)

While Raghuram gets accustomed to this new job of his, he accidentally bumps into his wife and daughter in the streets. They become extremely angry with his new work but wont express it in front of the public.

Another wonderful shade of Raghuram is shown where he joins the kid into an orphanage and gets the kid an opportunity to study and live a happier life instead!

After Raghuram heads back home, they confront him asking what was the need to sell papads and earn money at all. Raghuram, being to his obvious self explains that a work is always a work, whether it is a salesman or an editor!

Meanwhile Raghuram’s boss in the newspaper office faces quite a situation because of the fashion photos published on the front page. The situation arises in such a way that his own son gets influenced by the pictures and gets arrested by misbehaving with some models at the fashion show. Raghuram’s boss soon realizes his mistake and understands the value of morals and principles in life.  He rushes to Raghuram’s place and apologizes fervently for his mistake and asks the latter to join office immediately.

The scene next drifts to Raghuram celebrating his daughter’s birthday with his family. They visit a temple and start planning how to celebrate the day. After some relaxing moments within the family, Raghuram happens to see a poor lady with a kid pleading Kotayya for donation so that she can get her daughter cured from cancer. Just as Kotayya cuts her back saying she is a fraud, without another thought Raghuram donates whatever money he has to the poor lady and takes his family back home.

Raghuram gets a heap of comments and whiff of anger from his family for doing so and his kids even say carelessly how can little sum of money change a person’s life. Raghuram apparently thinks it is the time to explain what made him concerned about humanity so much and starts off telling the story as an eye opener not only to his family but also to the audience!

Watch the wonderful sequence below:

During his student life, Raghuram’s mother gets seriously ill but doesn’t have sufficient financial support to get operated. At such crucial time a certain NGO helps them out and luckily his mother survives. Raghuram gets curious to know about the anonymous person who helped his family so much without having any relation with them at all. He decides to visit the person by getting the address and thank him for the timely help the person did.

Raghuram heads to Madhurai to meet Mr.Swaminathan (The anonymous person) and gets surprised to see a very simple house instead. The person speaks in tamil and without further ado offers newspapers to Raghuram and asks him to check all the people who are in trouble and write letters to all such NGOs about the news. Very soon Raghuram gets amazed to see the simplicity and down-to-earth nature of Mr.Swaminathan and understands that to really help a person out, one need not be affluent.  This scene was wonderfully conceived by the director and sure makes a great impact on the viewer.

A great caption catches Raghuram’s attention in Swaminathan’s house. It says “I believe in mankind, I love mankind, because I belong to mankind”. That is the line which shapes up Raghuram’s life and makes him decide to bother not only about his own family but also about the society.

It also makes us understand that inspiring people are around us, and they need not be someone who has achieved greatest things in life.

We get to see much more different shades of Raghuram as the film progresses. One such situation where he happens to find out his daughter is meeting up with some guy and instead of scolding her for doing so, he brings them both to the house itself and asks them to talk in the garden itself. He even requests them not to meet up outside and become an object of criticism by all, but meet in the house itself and understand each other well.  Raghuram’s wife gets furious with her husband’s actions but the former explains his action wonderfully saying that he is only giving his daughter a chance to understand her would be partner better and make her happy!

Scenes like this make the audience feel Raghuram is such an unbelievable person but it is people like him who make us re think about our values, and whether we are really caught up in the norms of the society and forgetting how to react to things differently and coolly!

The film gathers tension when Raghuram happens to know his daughter plans to marry another guy in a registered office and he accepts for the marriage. Looking at the furious outburst of anger from his wife, Raghuram coolly asks to take the situation at easier note.

He explains her in a relaxed tone saying their daughter only chose whom she liked by meeting up few of the guys and married the person of her choice. Even as parents if they would choose to marry their daughter, they will have to search for an ideal match and get her married by her liking. Listening to this, Raghuram’s wife gets somewhat relaxed and things set right.

This scene shows amazing acting skills of Rajendra Prasad and Aamani, and the impact of thinking about a certain situation in life. Everything in life is based purely on the perception or how we see things.

Raghuram happens to confront Kotayya in stopping the latter to get hold of a debtee’s house. He tells Kotayya to understand the values of life and not to be so money minded. But Kotayya challenges back saying it ismoney alone which runs life, not trust and love. He even gets further saying Raghuram should never take a debt from him. Raghuram being his obvious self signs for surety and gets off the trouble in the scene.

Little does the viewer know what Raghuram is going to face next. The situations which come further not only challenges Raghuram’s ideologies but also his life in a shocking manner. Till now the conflict Raghuram faced was from outside the house , but what will happen when his own family starts hating his ideals just because they not getting what they asked for?

Can Raghuram pull off these crucial situations like before? Will he eventually win with tremendous trust in his ideals?

The best and the important part is to be continued!

 

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