Badri, a rom-com, starring Power Star Pawan Kalyan, Renu Desai, and Ameesha Patel is a film that introduced the dashing director Puri Jagannadh to Telugu cinema. It is a film that gave heroism a new meaning and set a precedent for many iconic aggressive yet empathetic Puri Jagannadh heroes. Let's recall what made it successful.
Giving a patriotic touch, the film starts with the meaningful song I am an Indian, where Pawan looks super stylish and rebellious.
Badri (Pawan) is an ad agency owner born with a silver spoon. Vennela (Renu Desai), who is a close family friend, is his childhood buddy and lady love. Badri's parents who settled in the US want them to get married, but the duo while away the time, as Vennela is yet to finish her grads. On one romantic evening, Vennela confesses that she loves him very much, but she claims that she did not feel the same sincerity in him.
Boasting that no girl can love him more than her, Vennela shows a beautiful girl coming out of a temple and challenges him to make her fall head over heels for him. Badri who has the weakness of getting carried away in arguments accepts the challenge immediately. Then Vennela leaves for the US to spend time with Badri's parents.
Badri sets out on a mission to woo the girl Vennela had shown him. He quickly collects her bio-data and finds out her name is Sarayu (Ameesha Patel), a pampered sister of business tycoon Nandu (Prakash Raj). Badri corners her to such an extent that she finally speaks her heart out and confesses her love, and puts forward a marriage proposal. This shocks Badri who just got close to her to win the challenge.
Meanwhile, Vennela returns from the US, and Nanda also comes to know about his sister falling for Badri. He warns Badri and asks Sarayu not to think of him. Upset with this, Sarayu attempts suicide and gets admitted to the hospital. When Badri comes to know about it, he rushes to the hospital despite Vennela asking him not to go. Vennela realizes that Badri loves Sarayu and regrets betting with him. However, Badri is torn between his two lady loves, How the trio sort of the things, and who finally among the two marry him forms the rest of the story.
Breathing life into his role, Pawan excelled in terms of emoting. He thunders the dialogue "Nuvvu Nanda ayithe enti nenu Badri Badrinath" which made fans go berserk in the halls. The dialogue has a lot of pop-cultural impact and still remains iconic. However, the adamant nature of his character brings in some grey shades.
Renu Desai is the surprise package of the film. With a carefree and quirky attitude, a modern girl looks, she made a whole difference, and also she got more footage than Ameesha. Ameesha is also good, but she looks very prim with an innocent role and traditional attire. Prakash Raj who played the doting brother of Ameesha adds punch with his powerful villainy.
Ramana Gogula who teamed up for the second time with Pawan after Thammudu gave a brilliant album. Songs like I am an Indian, Bangalakatham, Ey Chikitta are well received by masses. Pawan's cowboy look in Ey Chikitta is cool to watch. Bringing more essence to his music, all the songs are well picturised in exotic locations.
Though the film lacks a strong storyline, Puri managed to deliver a gripping romantic drama. He scored brownie points for his creative directing skills and proved that he is here to stay. The film which made a staggering amount at the box-office became one of the blockbusters at that time. It also made Pawan a big fan-favourite and a youth icon. The action sequences are much talked about in those days and still remain crisp to watch.
Reviewed by: Bindusri Meduri