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In The Cause Of A Stepmother
Aslesha | February 24, 2006
Rating: ** (***** Very Good, **** Good, *** Fair, ** Average, * Bad)
Cast: Rajasekhar, Sri Devika, Sharada, Vijaykumar, Siva Reddy, Brahmanandam, Kovai Sarala, Krishna Bhagawan, Goutam Raju, Dharmavarapu, Kondavalasa, Rambabu, Sudha, Riyaz Khan, Abhinayasri and Others.
Art: Krishna Maya.
Choreography: DKS Babu & Shankar.
Cinematography: Jawahar Reddy.
Dialogue: Vegnesa Satish.
Editing: Nandamuri Hari.
Lyrics: Bhuvanachandra & ES Murthy.
Music: SA Rajkumar.
Producer: Paruchuri Sivarama Prasad.
Screenplay & Direction: Muppalaneni Siva.
Banner: United Movies.
Release Date: 24th February, 2006.
This film is a remake of a successful Malayalam film 'Balettan'. After watching the Telugu version one is sure to recall the proverb - 'Kalidasu Kavitwam Konta, Mana Paityam Konta' which means our own not so good ideas pulling down the quality of the original. For that matter one is apt to doubt the concept of the original itself for the unconvincing plot. The film is based on a silly proposition of an old man Dasaratha Ramayya (Vijaykumar) asking his loyal son Rajababu (Rajasekhar) to look after his second wife, Rajababu's stepmother, living elsewhere with her two daughters. He binds his son by an oath not to reveal to anyone including to his first wife Janaki (Sarada), the existence of a second woman in his life. The moment the hero starts visiting his stepmother (Sudha) and moves with her daughters for shopping and other purposes, people including his father-in-law (Narra) and his younger brother (Siva Reddy) doubt their relationship. This causes gossip and eventually even his mother's hatred. In a dialogue, Rajababu is elevated to the status of Srirama, who went to forests just to oblige his father's obligation to Kaikeyi. The dialogues are so poor that one fails to comprehend what the writer wants to say. The point however is that he depends on the text of the original.
What a subject this film deals with! Except this element of protecting the so-called honor of his father, Rajababu has nothing to do in the film. Hence the main story lasts only an hour. The rest is all nonsense. The director Muppalaneni Siva concentrates on elevating the image of the hero. But Rajasekhar these days appears to have forgotten the lessons of histrionics. His body language is horrible. Today he does not know how to stand properly and what acting is. Even the director fails to exploit Rajasekhar's talent which he used to exhibit earlier. Rajasekhar had better understand the role he is given. The boy who acts as his rival in the later parts of the drama proves a better actor and the scenes he is present in, carry intense drama.
To be brief it is enough to say the 'cause' set before the hero and its 'effect' that puts him in the brackets of a 'man with illicit relations' is nauseating. Look at his job in a co-operative bank - collecting money from defaulters. This element is introduced only to bring the heroine into the scene. She is a new actress Sridevika, with average looks and a good body build. She has nothing to do in the film except suspecting her husband in the end. There are many characters in the film including that played by Giribabu as uncle. Sarada returns to the screen after a long gap. Pity, she chose a wrong film, playing the role of the mother of the hero. Siva Reddy's role as brother of Raja is also not convincing. He too indulges in senseless villainy against his brother.
It is time now to mention the separate comedy track, meant for relief. It features the old combination of Brahmanandam and Kovai Sarala with Kondavalasa, Krishna Bhagavan, Dharmavarapu and others reducing everything to a farce. This part is meant to be a parody of 'Chandramukhi' with strains of 'Aparichitudu'. This track is so lengthy that it constitutes a second film by itself. We get the feeling that the entire film is a two-in-one show. Music lacks originalilty, and reminds us of familiar Hindi tunes. The action scenes featuring the hero as 'invincible' in fights do not save the film.