Having cast no less an angry young man like Rajsekhar in a difficult-to-perform role, Jeevitha made a path-breaking film like Bala's Sethu look so lousy that Vikram might have thought of filing a PIL against the blasphemeous couple. As if this more than decade old distinction is not enough, the lady director has added another frothy feather to her catastrophic cap. Inspired by Police Story and a zillion films inspired by Police Story, she casts her ever so young hubby in the role of Mahankali (yes, that is the name of our ACP sir), a fearless, trigger-happy police officer known to spare none - be it the 'balasina vadu' or the 'balaheenudu'.
Invoke the name of Mahankali and it is easy to conjure up the image of the Evil being torn apart by the Goddess. Our machismo cop was so named by his creative parents and as he reached the age of 6, he did a Bhagat Singh by wishing to plant a gun so he would reap more guns to gun down gun-wielding goondas.
Having reached the age of marriage (his mother, played by veteran actress Annapurna keeps egging her veteran son to marry as early as possible while our lover boy-kinda malevolent hero-cop is too busy finishing the members of a particular bhai gang in Hyderabad), he makes love to Tanisha (playing a much-harassed film actress) on a rainy evening. He had saved Tanisha from the evil clutches of a rowdy group by pressing in the services of ever-so-sensationalist electronic media. A mesmerized Tanisha falls for him (so as to help the director chip in with a song after two-three encounter scenes).
It is not as if Mahankali is known only for killings. He spends his birthdays with, yes, you guessed it right, orphans!
An epitome of courage and wisdom, he is eventually caught between the ploys of wily politicos (Jeeva, who plays Home Minister, says that scheming politicos deserve to be called, well, 'donga...') and machinations of a Dubai-based don (Pradeep Rawat as Arshad bhai).
The BG score is so loud and the righteous rage of the hero and the impotent rage of the villains is so exaggerated in scene after scene that Mahankali comes across as a special homage to all the forgotten pedestrian police stories (churned out by Sandalwood) of the bygone era.
Even though Mahankali arrogantly declares on prime time television that he will spare none, even the CM and the PM, some characters (among them a political biggie) can't recognize him. Worse still, even though he acts against the interests of the powers-that-be, nobody (including the YSR lookalike CM) dares touch him. Why? Because elections are nearing and Mahankali is so hugely popular that if he is transferred, the government may not return to power!
So beautiful are the two brains (screenplay by Dr. Rajsekhar) behind the film that they raise the bar for depicting rape on the screen (read the rape scene of one Srija). After liberally using expletives, a lecherous villain, about to sexually assault Tanisha, welcomes her into his room by singing, 'Ravamma Mahalakshmi..' One may like to pinch oneself in disbelief to know whether he is watching a film directed by a woman.
However great may be a public servant's stature, he is not higher than his department. That is why we see all self-styled on-screen cops praise the khaki and not themselves. Jeevitha being what she is, her hero says, "Idi uniform pogaru kadu ra, Mahankali power".
With only the loud and very loud BG score in your memory after you walk out, it is difficult to even talk about the rivalries, technical output of various departments and the actors, including the very young hero.
Verdict: Loud BG score. Very loud dialogues. Very many encounters with no one to make noise about human rights violation. Avoid it if you respect your human rights.
Released on: 8th March, 2013