Every path in life ends in grave is the bitter truth of life. Bala is a trendsetting director with offbeat themes that kindle emotional trauma and disturbing at times whose movies mostly delve in to the bitter truths of our life.
Starring Arya and Pooja, 'Nenu Devudni' has been produced by KS Srinivasan on Vaasans Visual Ventures banner. The maker of 'Sethu' and 'Sivaputhrudu', Bala has churned out this movie after a long gap of three years.
To begin a film set in the disparate milieu of the holy city Kasi needs a lot of guts. Filled with Sadhus of different types including the Aghori's, open space used as cremation grounds and incessant chanting of Mantra's, Varanasi is one different India which forms the first few minutes of the movie.
The story begins with Somasekharam's arrival at Varanasi accompanied with his daughter Shantha, in search of his long lost son Rudra (Arya). He reveals the truth that he ditched his son 14 years ago among a Sadhu tribe believing in the words of a horoscope teller, to his friend Shankara Sastry. Enraged by his inane acts, Shankara first refuses but later helps him in his quest.
After a long search, they find Rudra amidst Aghori Sadhus in an out-of-the-world condition smeared with ashes and chanting Mantras. Recognizing his son, they plead with Babaji Maharaj who sends Rudra along with them instructing him to come back once he frees himself of bonds to become Bhairava.
Back in his hometown, Rudra engages himself in his usual rituals and customs often dizzy with the help of Marijuana. A large group of local beggars suffer in the hands of a mafia gang and their lives are miserable. In comes a blind beggar girl, Amsavalli (Pooja) who gets nabbed by the goons and forced to beg in the temple hill. On a chance encounter, Amsavalli seeks help from Rudra to save her and he does. Gifted with a divine power to judge between good and evil, with the incessant chant of 'Aham Brahmasmi' Rudra becomes a god by himself and puts an end to worldly sorrows.
Performance of Cast
The lead role of Aghori Sadhu played by Arya has been etched to perfection with no flaws at all. His body language, long hairs and menacing looks have been meticulously worked out. The tone he speaks is rustic and the switch over between Hindi to Telugu is marvelous. Pooja in the most de-glamorized role of a blind girl has given the best in acting. The way she expresses her agony near the end touches greatly and moves everyone. Both the actors have sure chances of bagging some awards.
Apart from the known cast, the director has managed to cast in a group of physically and mentally challenged people.
Babaji Maharaj, Shakar Sastry, Somasekharam, Shantha, Bharathi, Thandavan, Kannan, Singampuli, Tamil Mani, Rajendran did complete justice to their characters with in the roles offered.
Work of the Crew
Musical score by Maestro Ilayaraja is spellbinding and the re-recording is absolutely stupendous. Meaningful dialogues like 'Brathuke ledanukunna vallaku nuvvu prasadinche chavoka varam' written by Sriramkrishna gives the right feel. Cinematography by Arthur A Wilson captures the life of beggars in their own style and flashes lingering memories. Suresh Urs's editing is neat and stunt choreography by Super Subbarayan is realistic to the core.
On a strict penance director Bala goes through the words of Ralph Waldo Emerson 'Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail'. He takes the road not taken and portrays the life of beggars in the most gruesome and realistic way. He has worked so hard to etch each and every character in detail which sheens on screen. On the flip side, Bala has left some loose strings in the plot which lags narration and makes us feel disengaged from the entire story.
'Nenu Devudni' is a high quality film which is aimed at matured audience who can withstand high level of realism and horrible side of life. The cast and crew have rendered their best from start till end. Satirical humor has been commingled all the way which evokes a nervous laugh. Audiences get into a gloomy mood during the run time which spoils its repetitive value. Pros are plenty; Cast, camera, music and dialogues. Cons are abundant; script, narration, editing and theme. Bala despite his brilliant portrayal has missed in the part to convey his thoughts. It's a movie to be lapped up by matured critics but not for an average film goer who walks out of the theatre confused whether the movies depicts us to fight for justice or pity the underlying society.
Verdict: Watch it to know the obscure side of life
Released on: February 06, 2009