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Yamagola:Srikanth-Venu combo a hit again

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Monday, August 27, 2007

The late thespian NTR's Yamagola proved to be a blockbuster during the 70s. In fact, several films came with the concept of Yamadharma Raju and the hero. Especially, in almost all those films like Yamagola, Yamudiki Mogudu, Yamaleela and Pittala Dora, Kaikala Satyanarayana portrayed the role of Yamadharma Raju, and all of them proved to be hit films. However, there was a change in the latest film with this concept Yamadonga where Padma Shri, Dr Mohanbabu played the role, repeating the history that all the films with this concept were hits. Now, it is the turn of Srikanth playing the Yuva Yama, with Satyanarayana playing his grandfather. Director Srinivasa Reddy has ensured that the entire film comes forth as an entertaining one. Though the title is similar, the latest film has nothing to do with the old Yamagola.

There is a rich man called Raghavaiah (Balaiah) and his is a joint family, which includes two brothers (Naresh, Ahuti Prasad), their wives, and children. As their family has had no girl child for two generations, Raghavaiah craves for a baby girl and his second daughter-in-law gives birth to a girl child. The family's guru says that the girl is very fortunate and would bring luck to the family, besides being kind-hearted and loveable to everyone. However, he does not reveal that she would die at the age of 22 ,and presents her a Rudraksha to her and tells the family that she should not remove it under any circumstances and names the girl as Aiswarya (Meera Jasmine). As the guru says, the girl brings prosperity to the family. On the other side, Yamadharma Raju (Satyanarayana) turns old and wants to relieve himself from the duty by handing it over to his grandson Dharma Raju Yuva Yama (Srikanth) and Gupta (Venu), the grandson of Chitragupta, who is his best friend, would assist him. In order to take over the reins, Yamadharma Raju puts a small test for Yuva Yama to take Aiswarya's life, pointing out that she was a blessed girl. So Yuva Yama and Gupta go to Bhulokam for the purpose. Yuva Yama falls in love with Aiswarya, but Gupta tells him that it was improper, as he could not show any love or affection towards the people in Bhulokam because his duty is to take their lives. With the advice of Gupta, Yuva Yama tries to take the life of the girl but is unable to do so because of that powerful Rudraksha. To complete the unfinished task, Yuva Yama and Gupta visit Bhulokam again as human beings. Yuva Yama could not harm her as his heart beats for her in love. Meanwhile, Gupta also falls in love with Vyjayanti (Reema Sen) who is a police officer. Gupta tries to fulfil his job and makes several attempts and finally succeeds in removing the Rudraksha. He calls Yamadharma Raju, who takes away the life of Aiswarya. Rejoicing at the duty consciousness of Gupta, he thinks of giving him a boon. Gupta pleads with Yamadharma Raju to help his friend emerge victorious in his love game. He okays it and to fulfil the boon, giving back life to Aiswarya ,and the film ends on a happy note.

Srikanth appears manly in the mythological character. Though he played a mythological character earlier in Devullu as Lord Rama, this is a full-length character and he excels in his role. Venu has also given a brilliant performance as Gupta. The perfect comedy timing by the duo is a highlight of the movie. The graphic works while displaying the Yamalokam is another highlight of this film. Instead of erecting huge sets, the director sought the help of graphics, as the scene lasts only for a few minutes. Graphics were also used while Yuva Yama and Gupta reach Bhulokam. The director was able to show Kamal Hassan as 'Bharatiyudu' with the help of graphics, besides some clippings with Padma Shri Allu Ramalingaiah. The remix song shot on Reema Sen, Srikanth and Venu, with both the heroes in the attire of NTR, received a big applause in the theatre.

Though in this kind of socio-fantasy films, we should not look for loopholes or mistakes, some nevertheless looked quite glaring. During the first visit of Yuva Yama and Gupta, they still remain Devatas, then how come they could be seen by others. In their second visit, a petty thief (Rajiv Kanakala) dupes them which is quite ludicrous. The villain's, as well as Reema Sen's character, has also not been portrayed properly.

If you take the film as a whole, it is a wholesome entertainer. The entire first half is worth watching with lots of graphics and several comic scenes. However, the director loses grip in the second half and fails to proceed with good comedy, as he was forced to inject sentiment in the film. Krishna Bhagawan has played the role of Narada, and he went a little overboard. All the others artistes did justice to their roles. Dialogues by Dasari Brahmam are good in parts. Camera work by Steady Cam Prasad is okay. As a whole, the film is an entertainer and has several qualities to attract all classes of audiences.

Cast: Srikanth, Venu Thottempudi, Meera Jasmine, Reemasen, Satyanarayana, Chalapati Rao, Krishna Bhagawan, AVS, Rajiv Kanakala, Naresh (senior), Ahuti Prasad, Balaiah, Sivaji Raja, Vijaykumar, Mallikarjun, Ram Jagan, Kavitha, Hema, Ramyasri, LB Sriram, Rajita and others

Script – Satyanand,
Dialogues – Dasari Brahmam,
Lyrics – Bhaskarabhatla Ravikumar,
Cinematography – 'Steady Cam' Prasad,
Music – Jeevan Thomas,
Producers – Amar, Rajasekhar and Satish,
Story, screenplay and direction – Srinivasa Reddy.
Banner: Frames Entertainments.

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