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Shiva Shankar Review

Shiva Shankar Review
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Cast:
Mohan Babu, Soundarya, Natanya Singh, Raja Murad, Riaz Khan, Ponnambhalam, Mohan Raj, Brahmanandam, Ali, LB Sreeram, Venu Madhav
Direction:
Kapuganti Rajendra
Production:
Mohan Babu
Music:
Ilayaraja

Shiva Shankar

IndiaGlitz [Thursday, August 26, 2004 • Telugu] Comments

When an ageing actor looking to retain his identity in the filmdom comes up with a movie, naturally the curiosity is high. Shivshankar, starring Mohan Babu, did evoke quite a bit of expectations.

Alas, the expectations are belied as the newcomer director Kapuganti Rajendra has faltered in getting the right ingredients to the keep the fare engrossing. Mohan Babu, too, should share some part of the blame, as he seems to fallen prey to the oldest failing of any actor --- catering to a set image rather than try and tell a story like it is.

Shivshankar's story is cliched and corny. Shivaji (Mohan Babu) is the adopted son of a dadha-don Sobhanadri (Raj Murad). Shivaji is the object of envy of Shobanadri's own son Hemadri (Riaz Khan).

The plot to veers to a situation that the aging don bequeaths his wealth to Shivaji after his own son kills a magistrate. Now Shivaji is the don and the inheritor of all the wealth. Naturally, this does not go well with Hemadri who takes out Shivaji's wife (Soundarya) and one of his two sons.

But he still cannot lay his hands on the wealth that his father had left behind. But Shivaji by now becomes a monk in a monastery. But Shivaji and his other son does not allow the evil forces to triumph.

With such a story, the director has very little space to develop the film. Caught in a cleft stick, he lets the script meander predictably. In fact, there is no element of surprise in any of the frames.

On the acting front, Mohan Babu is okay. But with his propensity to play to the gallery, he goes overboard in certain sequences. The monastery scenes have a touch of artificial to them.

Soundarya's brief role once again underscores what a loss has her death been to the industry --- she is beautiful and highly competent. Netanya Singh as the second heroine has a role to match her skimpy dress. The villains Raja Murad and Riaz Khan act predictably and shout at the top of their voices in most places.

Ilayaraja's music is easy on the ears but he has used a couple of his old tunes. Perhaps age is catching up with him, too. The rest of the technical aspects are above average.

But the film is certainly not.

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