Let me go back to 1998 a year in which a big film by name Dil Se released. It had SRK as the lead hero and Mani Ratnam was the director. SRK was on a high with back to back hits and Mani Ratnam was taking the country by storm after films like Roja and Bombay. AR Rahman was already very popular in Bollywood and the song chhaiyya chaiyya was a chartbuster even before release. The movie released with very high expectations but even before the dawn turned to dusk; it was written off as the biggest failure in SRK’s career.
Don’t wonder as to what happened. There are many such instances in filmdom and Brahmotsavam is only the latest with a similar record. In all such cases, the blame goes squarely and fairly to the director.
But let me say at the outset that the movie was not a complete write off for me. I enjoyed the movie in bits. I enjoyed the frames, the actors, the music and even the concept. I feel sad that it could have been a path breaker (or at least a great watch) if Srikanth Addala had applied himself properly. Addala had everything going for him with Brahmotsavam. PVP, Mahesh Babu, Mickey.J.Meyer, Ratnavelu and Srikanth Addala (the dialogue writer) were all huge assets to the film. But Addala the director, had probably got a bit too self-confident (or complacent or arrogant, careless, reckless…choose your word). There were cardinal mistakes no director can afford to make.
Addala did not bother to establish his characters. Surprising!! His characters in SVSC were sharply etched out in contrast but he has taken a 180 degree turn here.
- Satya Raj believes so much in family values. We are given no justification for his belief.
- Kajal dumps Mahesh because she cannot handle such sweet families, which she feels become irritating after a point. Fair enough but her decision comes so suddenly and no prior events prepare us for this sudden reversal of her stand.
- Samantha comes just like that in the 2nd Why? Is it only because the 1st heroine has already exited??
- Mahesh goes searching for relations of prior 7 generations. Not bad. Even I would do that if I had the time and money. I am not against the idea per se but the director ought to tell us as to what prompted Mahesh to go in search of all those relatives.
Addala has not even bothered about simple screenplay fundamentals. 4 songs in first 40 minutes, love track going parallel to family time, sudden take off on a Ooty and Ketti trip….. This is taking the viewer completely for granted.
But what was Mahesh doing?? We can only wish that he did some due diligence on the screenplay and characterizations. After all, a hero who is a super star has to take responsibility for his own film. He just cannot say that he acted to the best of ability. Grow up Mahesh!! You just cannot say that. It is your career and your fans too desperately want you to have a future without flops.
We love Mahesh not just for his good looks. He acts well. He also does subjects that other Tollywood heroes dread to do. He wants to leave his mark and he works hard. We respect him for that. But it is probably time for him to go beyond all these.
PS: Wait for our next article: Time Tollywood heroes go beyond their usual working style