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Devasthanam – Movie Review

By Ramchander

When a film has big star cast like K Viswanath and SP Balasubrahmanyam, immediately any one can forecast that the film has nothing big to offer but will have some good messages. In addition, the film is being directed by a writer like Janardhana Maharshi. Generally, such films will not have regular entertainment, hence people don’t prefer to watch such movies. Let us see what this film, Devasthanam is going to give and how many people could digest it.

Srimannarayana (K Viswanath) stays in Chittoor and he is a Good Samaritan but nobody is there to take care of him. He spends his time in a temple and his job is to answer the questions of the devotees. Being an old man, he fears that what is his fate and who will perform his last rites after his death. He finds one middle-class man called Sambamurthy (Balu) and assigns him of performing his final rites.

Saraswati (Amani) was Murthy's wife. Though Murthy refuses to do the job, he accepts to perform the last rites as it was his last wish. As both of them move together for some time, Sambamurthy understands the real meaning of life. Meanwhile, Sambamurthy turns a writer and he starts penning some lyrics, which could be rendered in the mode of Harikathas in a little modern fashion. As Srimannarayana too liked those songs, he starts rendering like Harikathas at public functions and religious events. They become very popular in no time and they start earning thousands of rupees. Both of them start a trust named ‘Sarve Jana Sukhino Bhavantu’ and the money is being diverted to help purohits of temples and to renovate temples. At this juncture, a tragedy strikes and Srimannarayana becomes dumb-struck, as he alone has to continue the Harikathas. What is the tragedy? How Srimannarayana alone managed it? Answers to these questions form part of the climax.

Vishwanath and SP Balu are seasoned artistes and they have delivered excellent performance. Their acting touches the hearts of the audience. Amani, who appeared on the screen after a long time, also equally gave a nice performance. Other artistes like Rao Ramesh and Ramanachary have done justice to their roles.

Cinematography is okay, but the cinematographer should have taken more care about lighting. Editing is not so crisp and just an average work. Though there are no boring scenes, there are some unnecessary sequences, which could be removed and their editing would not affect the story. Music by Swara Veenapani is average and worth listening. However, the director, who himself took the responsibility of penning the dialogues, screenplay, besides direction did complete justice to all the three departments. The dialogues are good at times, screenplay is adequate and the direction is okay.

The tagline to the film ‘Tirupati Laddantha Teeyanaina Cinema’ is very apt and watch the film for a soothing experience. Adding to that the thought of reviving the old and traditional art forms is laudable.

Cast: K. Viswanath, SP Balasubrahmanyam, Aamani, Kovai Sarala, Rao Ramesh, Ramanachary and others
Credits: Music – Swara Veenapani; Camera – VN Suresh Kumar; Presents – Ammanni Narayan; Story, dialogues; Screenplay and direction – Janardhana Maharshi
Banner: Sarvejana Sukhino Bhavantu Films
Released on: April 13, 2012

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