Gautham Vasudev Menon had directed 'Gharshana" with Venkatesh in 2004, a stylish action entertainer with love in its backdrop. Ater a long gap, he resurfaced in Tollywood to bring out a cute love story called 'Ye Maya Chesave" with Naga Chaitanya and Samanta in the lead. Both the films were big hits. Now, he came up with another different psychological thriller with the title 'Erra Gulabeelu". The director touted that the film is based on a real life story. Let us see how good it is on screen.
Samar (Veera) is the son of a sex maniac father. Even as he is an eight year old boy, his father used to enjoy with women and wine in front of these young kid and he almost gets seduced. The ordeals continue for Samar for four years until Meenakshi (Swapna Abraham) comes to his rescue and saves him from the clutches of his father by calling the police. In order to avoid arrest Samar"s father commits suicide. Now Meenakshi decides to bring him up with a different name Veera (Veerabahu) and days pass by. Veera turns 16 but his childhood incidents and horrifying days continue to haunt him.
Meenakshi gets into a sexual relationship with Veera. At this juncture, Meenakshi gets married to Krishna, and Veera turns a psycho and kills Krishna and later Meenakshi also dies with burns. He reaches Hyderabad with the deadbody of Meenakshi believing that she is still alive. Veera turns into a split personality and behaves with different emotions like Samara and Veera. Now, Veera starts targeting young girls and brings them to his room to arrest them. Finally, Veera finds his childhood friend Sukanya (Sameera Reddy), who was in love with Arjun (Ashwin) and kills him to kidnap Sukanya. However, police catch Veera during the kidnap attempt and release all the kidnapped girls from his house, besides admitting him in mental asylum for treatment, where he starts his fresh love with a similar lady psycho (Samanta).
The highlight of the film is the performance of Veerabahu and Sameera Reddy. Veerabahu, though a debutant, showed different emotions in a right perspective. Even as she enters in the second half, Sameera Reddy also showcased an impressive performance. Behind the screen, cinematography by Manoj Paramahamsa would stand as a highlight and remained a top notch. His taking takes the audiences into the film and involves them in the film. An equal ease was shown by Antony while editing the film and it is very swift and had no boring scenes. Above all the director dealt with a delicate and sensitive subject with perfect screenplay and made the narration quite effective with his original stylish way. Production values of Mana Desam are appreciative.
Not all the Telugu audiences would like the movie as the story was prepared with hard-hitting and real life story, bloodshed, terrified moments besides the psychic trauma. Gautham Menon of course, did complete justice to the film. The film lacks any kind of comedy elements, dances and songs and hence it may not be liked by mass audiences. At the same time Erra Gulabilu does not disappoint the movie lovers who appreciate special, creative elements and love the experimentation. The film has nothing to offer for regular movie buffs.
The thriller concept may work out in attracting the masses but it is just an imagination. Hence the commercial success of the film in B, C centres is doubtful, but it would earn a hit talk in 'A" grade centres. Gautham, however, ensured a message on the kind of care and treatment mentally disordered patients require. Watch it for spine-thrilling episodes