August 09, 2012 Y. Sunita Chowdary
Hanu Raghavapudi..we need some time to forget Andala Rakshasi (before we watch your next film). You had a good story, infact a very good plot in mind the way you began and ended the film was novel but we felt like dying and killing you (plz translate in Telugu).
Seriously speaking, Andala Rakshasi that released with a lot of hype will appeal to the 18-22 year olds who were very young when Geetanjali or Mounaragam released, for the rest it is sheer torture. No one expects the director to recreate the magic of Nagarjuna and Girija, the mirrored skirts, the misty mountains, the white coloured houses, the sulking granny, the kids, drying clothes after the just-stopped rain, etc., but he should have used a fair amount of common sense atleast.
When two people are standing close to each other one expects them to speak in a normal tone. The girl and the boy scream their vocal chords out as if one of them is deaf or as if the audience is. All this Lechipodama stuff worked in Geetanjali because it is was the first time and became a cult film, and anything minutely repeated, oops copied will be treated with disdain and looked at as a lack of confidence.
The first shot is of a man lying with medical support, if we have seen the posters of Naveen we might mistake it was him, who will stretch their grey cells to make sure that it is of the debutant hero's father. It is only after the last scene do we recollect and realise that it was the father. So the film is about love, how people go to an extent to die or kill for each other.
Naveen was not used properly or his character was not explained at all, may be because love doesn't need to be explained he didn't take pains to even talk. All he did was to widen his eyes and stare at her, pull up his shirt and exult in the songs. Even there is no reference to his passion and creativity working on the beautiful art pieces. The focus is on Gautam and Mithuna.
The first half of the film is painful but it is only in the next half, we get to join the threads together. Rahul Ravindran is the new Siddharth (just not the voice) and is a lot lot better. Lavanya Tripathi is like the girl next door, simple and attractive. Because of the excessive copying, one tends to feel that the characters are stripped of their natural, original self.
When you think of Mithuna and Gautam or Naveen you think of people who scream and speak innocent dialogues that doesn't suit their age. Andala Rakshasi has the propensity to work if the characters had spoken normally. Pragati is good when she loses her cool at the hospital. Satish Kasetty's voice suited the father very well.
Cinematography is fab and songs are nice. The director has spent a lot of time and energy in creating a perfect ambience to fall in love and die in love but character sketches were incomplete. What one carries home is not the essence of love, how much one loved the other but the repetitive 'champestha, chacchipotha' and ironically the film is all about that.
You walk away feeling nothing for the three characters as what looked different, pure, innocent years back seems just a put on now..even if it is a tribute to Maniratnam.