Retro Review - We present the reviews of some of the films that offer great cinematic experience as if they are released now (currently). We present the content in such a way that we have just come out of the theater and penned out our thoughts fresh. You can enjoy the reviews and relive the moments in a different way. And try to watch the films like they're new, once again.
We hail Baahubali as a game-changer that changed the course of Telugu cinema. But the idea of such a big-budget project with a lot of VFX was sown by S.S Rajamouli in 2009 with the film Maghadheera. Not completely a period fantasy drama like Baahubali, Maghadheera goes back and forth to past and present. Confused? It is a film that deals with reincarnation.
Idea Behind Maghadheera:
The man behind the story of this epic wonder is Rajamouli's father Vijayendra Prasad. The renowned writer has scripted a story titled Jagadeka Veerudu with Superstar Krishna as the lead actor. The story of the film is all about a bodyguard who serves a Rajamatha. He fights 100 warriors and dies after failing to put her back to the throne. He takes rebirth after 400 years and fulfills his ambition of putting her to the throne. The story was turned down and did not materialize. When Rajamouli got the chance to direct Ram Charan he chose this story (which he loved a lot). He changed the Rajamatha character to the princess so that he can instill a love angle to it.
The opening scene of the film starts in flashback. A brave warrior opens his heart to his beloved who slips into the mountains, and he will follow the suit. Then comes another warrior who cremated the shield of the first warrior, and says that he will take rebirth to win his love. What is this love story?
*400 years later*
A young man Harsha (Ram Charan) a biking freak makes money and earns his living out of betting. One fine day he happens to touch the hand of a girl Indu (Kajal Aggarwal) at the bus stop. That touch connects him to the past. While Harsha is on the hunt to find the girl, Indu's father is fighting to get back their ancestral property which is in control of his nephew Raghu Veer (Dev Gill) and his father. Raghu Veer who comes to kill his uncle sees Indu and eyes her. Meanwhile, Harsha finds Indu and her father too agrees with their love. Angered with this, Raghu Veer kills Indu's father and blames Harsha making Indu hate him.
*400 Years ago*
The story goes back to the past. 1609 AD, Aravali, the kingdom of Udaygarh. Kalabhairava (Ram Charan) is a warrior who trains the soldiers of the kingdom. Mitravinda (Kajal) is the princess and Randheer Billa (Dev Gill), the nephew of the king is the Senadhipathi. Randheer has eyes on Mitra and her kingdom while the latter loves Kalabhairava.
This results in a rivalry between the two warriors, and Randheer joining hands with a Muslim invader Sher Khan (Sri Hari) kills the king and occupies the kingdom. Sher Khan challenges Kalabhairava to prove his ancestor's history of killing 100 people single-handed and promises to handover the kingdom and princess if he wins. As Kalabhairava proves his valor and love, Sher Khan salutes him. But Randheer gets into a fight with Kalabhairava, and both of them along with Mitra die in the battle and takes re-birth after 400 years.
*Back to the present*
Salmon (Sher Khan - Sri Hari) is the accelerator agent of the film who helps Harsha to win his lady love Indu. Salmon saves Harsha who falls into a lake before the interval episode. He teams with Harsha as the latter takes his revenge on Raghu Veer (Randheer Billa - Dev Gill).
Though only one film old, Ram Charan has breathed life into a larger-than-life role with ease. Be it horse riding, sword fighting, emoting, he did a fantastic job. When it comes to dances, he proved that he is a chip off the old block in the song Bangaru Kodi Petta which also includes a cameo of his father Mega Star Chiranjeevi.
Kajal Aggarwal is sweet and charming and the way she carried off two roles as Mitavinda and Indu is simply superb. Dev Gill (the first stylish villain of Rajamouli's films) though looks good turns devilish when needed and his performance is brilliant. Sri Hari is the special package of the film. His screen presence is small, but he has been part of some major scenes of the film, and his Sreekakulam dialect in the second half is exceptional. Rao Ramesh as Aghora who tells the about the reincarnation to Dev Gill is excellent.
M. M. Keeravani has given fine-tunes that suits the theme of the film. Songs like Panchadara Bomma, Bangaru Kodi Petta got well received, and the sets of Dheera Dheera song were awesome. Cinematography is top-notch, and VFX is also good. Some good scenes that created impact are - the horse helping the protagonist who is sinking in the sand, the chariot chase and fight scene, killing 100 soldiers scene (this is the heart and soul of the film).
Kudos to Rajamouli's innovative thinking. Maghadheera is a technical extravaganza and the way Rajamouli shifted the screenplay from past to present makes the film an epic wonder to watch. Though it has a few narrative lapses, this semi-period drama has lived up to the expectations and gave a new facet to Telugu cinema. Even compared to today's standards, the film has blockbuster written all over it.
Reviewed By: Bindusri Meduri