Posts Tagged ‘Baahubali’

Spell Grandeur, Spell Baahubali

When was the last time the whole nation celebrated a movie without saying it’s yours, it’s ours or without any guilt. I don’t remember any. Baahubali was one such film, which spelt grandeur in each and every scene.

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Having watched Baahubali 1 out of compulsion but still to have liked it, its sequel, Baahubali 2’s trailers too didn’t impress me much. But in theatres there wasn’t a single moment of lag, the movie was lengthy, I could feel it but never for a second did I want to end it. I don’t think any director in recent time has got hold of people’s pulse like this. Also to how prolifically to use the canvas. If it was big, it was big for a reason.

Pseudo intellects want to of course read atomic physics side by side while watching the movie like how a thesis on space technology would be necessary to watch a Nolan film. I don’t know why people want answers when the questions are this interesting. The very first scene had a newborn being taken above water by a lady who was almost dead, with the music and tension, it gave me goose bumps, if it didn’t work for you, it’s never going to work for you post that, it’s even waste of time to watch the second part.

Rajamouli wins it with the title card itself, it’s clear how much effort he has put in that. It carries the whole story of first part. As soon as the title card ends and Sathyaraj’s voice start and you are instantly hooked, Ramya Krishnan’s feet adorned by flowers, showing the love of people, son coming to the rescue and like how. I don’t think any movie post MGR era had perfected the Amma sentiment like this. You call it perfection because it’s not cringe worthy, rather when Ramya Krishnan smiles at Prabhas, you actually like it.

Scene after scene, frame after frame, it was awe inspiring, from the chariot to elephant to bow to songs to Anushka to attitude to the interval block. Everything was awe inspiring. Interval block, of all, was the most fabulous scene in the entire movie. When the stones vibrate and the sound increases from people to soldier to elephant, it was nothing but brilliant. The whole theatre was shaking. It was like falling from the tip of the roller coaster where you understand the complete meaning of gravity. That’s how powerful Rajamouli has scripted Baahubali.

I didn’t remember any scene from part one, but it didn’t affect my movie watching experience even one bit. This movie would have worked wonders even for people who had not watched part one. But I don’t think there would have been anyone like that.

I didn’t like Prabhas in the first movie, he was trying so hard. When Rana got introduced taming a bull, that was screen presence, not Prabhas with Siva Linga, in fact, how in a country where we play national anthem and four videos for the ‘benefit’ of us before the movie and any small disagreement from the norm becomes an issue, I don’t know how people didn’t make an issue out of that where a hero breaks an idol and keeps somewhere else. Good for us.

But in the second half Prabhas has such command. You shout as if you should for your local hero. Anushka on the other hand gives one of her best performance, completely understanding the character and delivering it. Her attitude mixed with aggression was a treat to watch. Also satisfies feminists by walking over the shoulder of Prabhas.

Good that Tamannaah was spared of any antics in the film but I’d have really liked to have Rana some more role. See how effortlessly he shows his villainy, the scene where he asks his dad to stop talking in court, till the right moment. Every scene except for the shout in climax works brilliantly in favor of him.

Why Kattappa killed Baahulabi was the question in everyone’s mind, but even if that had been revealed, not even a single soul would have got disappointed while watching the movie.

 

 

 

 

The first reaction after watching the film was, “nala vela indha padatha tamil la dub panitanga, ilena namma thala naan nadikiraentu moonu varsham exercise pana poirparu.” (Good that the film was dubbed into Tamil, if not Vikram would have wanted to remake the film and would have gone on to exercise for three years) You can’t stop but draw comparison between Prabhas and Vikram. Physique is something and looking menacing with it is something else. Vikram is the one who could be that. Compare the Ravanan scene in front of the idol and the Shiva lifting Shiva idol here. Bad music spoils it in the latter one, accepted but where is the screen presence. Six packs, eight packs or whatever it may be. It’s finally occupying the frame by screen presence that matters and not physical mass. There is a difference when Vikram twists his neck in I Gym fight and twists his shoulder in Anniyan climax fight. It’s the same act he does but he looks like two different person. Rangan was correct in pointing that out. Surya when he stands with open arms as Bodhidharman, for a child to come near him he just resides in the frame and doesn’t occupy the frame. When Vikram does the same in Ravanan he occupies the frame, the 100 feet idol looks small in front of the five foot man. Prabhas is an example of how to use physique to look menacing. See his opening scene.

Baahubali

But being so harsh on this film isn’t correct, a film which is big but with purpose. The same budget if given to Shankar would have been wasted on erecting sets for songs which would come at absolutely absurd sequence. Here the magnanimity was used with a purpose. When Paalvalathevan’s (Rana Daggubati) golden statue was raised and Baahubali’s (Prabhas) statue gets raised behind that it was an epic scene. It was humungous but with purpose. Yes it did remind us of Trojan horse scene in Troy but it was okay. These influences could be forgiven.

If influences are to be taken into account, the final war sequence with Kalakeyan’s (Prabhakar) troops looks to be taken right out of The Lord of the Rings Orcs sequence. There was a debate as to why evil should always be black and a fitting reply citing that may be it was that way because the story was told by Katapa (a brilliant Sathyaraj), who is like a grandfather to Baahubali. But the film wins our heart much before the war sequence, the war sequence and the CGI could be appreciated but doesn’t stand as a point to judge the film. It happened, it happened for good and that’s it.

Talking about performances, except for the mediocre Prabhas and pathetic Tamanna everyone scores. Highlight was the performance of Sathyaraj and Ramya Krishnan. There is a scene where she walks into the court, breast feeds her child after uttering a heroic (heroinic) dialogue. Once her sister’s child cries she breast feeds both the children together. It is not easy to act in such a scene. It would have been easily made cheesy. It requires the caliber of Ramya Krishnan and the artistry of S. S. Rajamouli to make such a brilliant scene or such a scene, brilliant.

For a film like Baahubali, a heroic film, the focus should be wholly on the hero but sadly like the superhero films which are coming these days, the villains and the sidekicks score more than the hero. When Shiva tries to get to the top of falls, there is hardly any surprise, we would be as disinterested as his friends who’d be turning opposite to the falls, being sure that he’d fall. But for a change we are so sure that he’d go.

But the way the song was used as a motivation for him to climb and the tattoo romance between him and Avanthika (Tamannaah) were great ideas but poorly executed. Instead of Tamannaah I’d have preferred a hazy figure in the first song and would have loved to avoid being in the sets even after the second song gets over. These were the inconsistencies among an otherwise consistent film.

Names too I’m not sure how much of a research was made, few names looked contemporary, few looked mythological. It’d have been better if they had used proper mythological type of names instead of this mix.

But for a big budget first part of an epic film, Baahubali was brilliant. Hope the second one too gets to be high on content and less on graphics.