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Baanam: Telugu Movie Review

September 20, 2009

It’s difficult to say how good a movie “Baanam” is, right after you walk out from the theatre. It is one of those rare films which seems to be a culmination of years of contemplation and intelligent writing. Out of many facets, one thing which stands out majorly is it’s utter sincerity and conviction to narrate a simple story. Directed by Chaitanya Dantuluri, the film starring Vedika kumar,  also introduces Nara Rohith, the newphew of Chandrababu Naidu to Tollywood. “Baanam” is the story of an ambitious young man whose life changes when a girl enters his life.

The Year: 1989. Nara Rohit stars as Bhagath who’s leading a normal life in the quaint town of  Ranasthali. When his father returns after 20 years of exile, Bhagath has all the more reason to rejoice. One day he comes across a girl, Subbalaxmi (Vedika) who’s neck deep in trouble and after some contemplation, he suggests that she should stay with him. Meanwhile a local gangster, Shakthi (Ranadheer) is spreading his tentacles and building an empire eliminating everything which obstructs his growth. One fine day the lives of Bhagath and Shakthi criss cross each other and it leads to a….

Telugu films often tend to be conscious about how interesting the scenes are for the audience. No wonder, when someone runs out of conversations they include fights, songs, comedy…etc. “Baanam” is however different in a lot of ways. It doesn’t get sucked into the quagmire of a notion that Cinema is meant to entertain the audience. We as the audience are expected to slowly understand the environs and personality which shapes Bhagath. The house where he stays is away from a lot of things. Hustle bustle of civilization, bunch of moronic friends are completely missing in Bhagath’s life. He doesn’t talk much, doesn’t express his emotion in a flamboyant manner, doesn’t even flap his eyelashes. The only time he smiles is when he’s about to propose to Subbalaxmi. On the other hand, his father Chandrasekhar (Shayaji Shinde) is hot headed but understands his son without trying to reason with him for everything.  Subbalaxmi (Vedika) enters Bhagath’s life when her own life is in shambles. She’s often too shy to express her gratitude and although she has fallen in love with Bhagath, she doesn’t express it openly. Maybe her own life doesn’t let her to move closely with Bhagath so easily. On the other hand, Shakthi (Ranadheer) is every bit of villainy personified. He spews threats with terrific simplicity, the very mention of which can slither the opponents. I think, Shakthi is one of the best written characters for a villain in recent years.

Anil Bhandari’s cinematography was probably the main reason why I saw this film. The scarlet sky, lush green mountains and sun burnt brownish earth compliment each other so much “Ranasthali” does indeed look like Utopia. Mani Sharma’s music and background score are undoubtedly his best in years! The lyrics have the distinction of being just too pleasant for your ears and you will end up gasping for more. Marthand K Venkatesh’s editing is wonderful and never lets any unnecessary scenes creep into this film. Well, what can I say about Chaitanya Dantuluri? It’s a terrific debut…I wonder why nobody came forward to produce this wonderful film in the past couple of years. He deserves all the respect and admiration possible for his debut film as a director. Some of the scenes depicting the “machoism” of Bhagath without any violence are brilliantly shot. Tollywood has found someone who’s sensible enough to make good films.

“Baanam” is the kind of film which doesn’t try too hard to attract your attention. If you are a movie buff who has some patience and penchant to watch sensible stuff, this is your best bet. Couple of days ago, when I wrote a review on www.123telugu.com, I saw that people posted quite a few comments about the film. Someone asked me how much money did I take to give a good rating for this film? Well, what can I say?!! I live in a world, were people have stopped thinking. I live in a world where boundaries of good and bad are not so distinct anymore. I am no genius but atleast I am sensible enough to understand what makes a cinema “watchable” and “Sensible”. Go watch Baanam…it’s one of the best film of the year which has a simple story, stunning cinematography, outstanding music and brilliant direction….

Bottomline: Let this “Arrow” pierce through you…you won’t regret it!

P.S: Ohh…by the way, Chaitanya Dantuluri, the director of the movie blogs too…@http://chaitanya-dantuluri.blogspot.com

-Hemanth

(The author can be reached at hemanth.cr@gmail.com)

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11 Comments leave one →
  1. September 20, 2009 10:37 pm

    Hemanth,

    Nice review… Very good blog.. Like your style of writing.. 🙂

    • Hemanth permalink*
      September 21, 2009 11:22 am

      @Ramana: Thanks a lot…keep reading!..:)…hope you have liked other posts as well..:)

  2. Varma permalink
    September 22, 2009 9:42 am

    very nice to read the way you have described how a sensible and worth wathing film should be.

  3. October 12, 2009 8:02 am

    Wanna write telugu movie , music reviews,
    Visit http://www.avakayabiryani.com and and get your blogs, reviews, TV show updates featured. Grab this opportunity , the site is drastically attracting readers, be the first one to send updates and get noticed by thousands of its viewers.

  4. Akhilesh permalink
    December 29, 2009 12:40 pm

    Hi Hemanth, I have just watched the movie. It was good. But the print I watched was not clear. I was curious to know, how did you arrive at, that the story is in 1989? was it based on the year on the civils books he was preparing or anything else?

    • Hemanth permalink*
      December 29, 2009 12:48 pm

      @Akhilesh: The year is shown in the beginning..right? When his father gets shot and they say, 15 years later or something like that. And Nagarjuna’s “Shiva” is still playing in one of the Cinema Halls…so, the year is somewhere close to that!..:D

  5. anand permalink
    September 1, 2010 12:08 pm

    i wud lik 2 tel 1 thng my fevrt film in telugu s geetanjali aftr geetanjali oly baanam movie s made me so plesure coz 4m so mny year i was w8ng 4 dis kind film

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