Katamarayudu - Movie Review
Cast: Pawan Kalyan, Shruti Haasan, Ajay, Chaitanya Krishna, Siva Balaji, Kamal Kamaraju, Ali, Nassar, Rao Ramesh, Narra Srinu, Pruthvi, Pavitra Lokesh, Rajitha, Pradeep Rawat, Tharun Arora, Ravi Prakash, Yamini Bhaskar, Asmitha, Rama Devi, Bhanu Sri and others
Story: Bhupathi Raja
Screenplay: Akula Siva
Music: Anup Rubens
Cinematography: Prasad Murella
Editing: Gowtham Raju
Art: Brahma Kadali
Banner: Northstar Entertainments Pvt. Ltd
Producer: Sharrath Marar
Director: Kishore Pardasani
CBFC Rating: U
Running time: 142 min
What's it about!
Katamarayudu (Pawan Kalyan) lives in a village in Rayalaseema with his four brothers. He is chronic bachelor and his method of justice is bashing up goons. On the other hand, all his four younger brothers have lovers of their own. They also want his elder brother lose his heart for a woman in order to get nod from him for their love stories. A classical dancer-singer Avanthi (Shruti Haasan) comes to his village and stays right opposite to his home. The brothers hatch a plan and Katamarayudu reluctantly falls in love with her. To impress her father Bhupathi (Nasser) who doesn’t like people taking up himsa route, Katamarayudu too goes on ahimsa way. Later he learns that Bhanu (Tarun Arora) is planning to annihilate entire family of Bupathi and Avanthi. Then he has no option but to take up the sword.
'Katamarayudu' is based on a Tamil movie ‘Veeram’ (story is written by Bhupathi Raja and Akula Siva) that starred Ajith in the lead role. 'Katamarayudu' the film goes on regular template of a mass action drama. The movie begins on interesting note by establishing Pawan Kalyan in never before seen attire in traditional Rayalaseema panche (lungi). The story then swiftly moves to romantic thread - a chronic bachelor getting attracted to a classical dancer. These episodes shot on them are funny and interesting.
In the first half of the movie, Pawan Kalyan's screen charisma dominates the show and he holds the interest. On parallel note, the story also deals with the backstory of Narsappa played by Rao Ramesh and his scheme of taking revenge on Katamarayudu. Rao Ramesh's acting and his plans are entertaining. Till the interval the movie goes on without major hurdles with good dose of entertainment. Post interval the drama moves to the village of Shruti Haasan. The story of Shruti's father who is a retired judge comes to the fore, and the romantic thread takes backseat. These two threads have not merged well. Since the motive of Tarun Arora, the main villain and his grudge against Nasser is too clichéd, the proceedings too are not that interesting. The story has a weak villain.
What works in the film despite old storyline are Pawan Kalyan's charisma and his terrific antics. He has come up with the best lines, his fights wearing adda panche (sort of lungi) make an entertaining watch. His walking style is massy! The overall style is terrific.
There are also many good sequences to note like Pawan Kalyan and Shruti Haasan meeting at a paddy field to express their feelings to each other, Pawan Kalyan demanding a bus driver to change his route so that Shruti can come to his home. The character of Rao Ramesh is quite interesting. He is introduced as some serious factionist on revenge mode but his character arc turns completely different and ends in a hilarious manner. The final touch given to his characterization has stamp of creativity.
What don't work in the film are lengthy runtime, regular story, and predictable second half. Some new elements should have been included post interval. The director has completely relied on Pawan Kalyan's charisma in the slow-paced second half. And the star has not let him down. He has come up with terrific performance. He has looked damn dashing and stylish in the role of a leader from Rayalaseema. It is his show completely! Shruti Haasan is just okay. Of the other actors, Rao Ramesh is brilliant. The way he talks 'kani kani kani' is excellent. The four brothers are good. Ali has provided some comedy. Nasser is at his usual self.
The film has rich taking and great production values. Top class cinematography by Prasad Murella, and good artwork has given the film splendid look. Music by Anup Rubens is mixed bag. 'Mira Mira Meesam' is the best one. Editing should have been crispier especially in the second half. It has some good dialogues; some of the dialogues are loaded with political tones, which would definitely make fans go in frenzy. Kishore Pardasani has shown his mark in handling Pawan Kalyan well and his grip on romantic thread is quite visible.
Bottom-line: 'Katamrayudu' is completely Pawan Kalyan's show. His histrionics, his attire and his dialogues dominate all the way. The story is quite clichéd but has interesting first half and largely works due to Pawan Kalyan and the romantic thread. Watchable masala drama!