Movie Review: Rendu Rellu Aaru
Cast: Anil, Mahima, Aishwarya Gorak, Naresh, Tagubotu ramesh, Kale Ravi Rao, Pramodini Saroja and others
Directed by Nandu Mallela
Cinematography by Amarnath Reddy
Edited by Rama Rao J.P
Music Composed by Vijay Bulganin
Lyrics by Vasishta Sharma
Censor Certificate: U & Run-time: 134 Minutes
When couple of relatively smaller budget films taste huge success at box office due to their simple and entertaining content then this paves a way for immediate chain reaction in an expected way. At one end it gives the much required fillip to the aspiring makers who are just waiting for their big splash with their refreshing ideas and thoughts. But on the other hand it also ensues in many half-boiled projects which are just there to en-cash the charging trends and nothing else.
Unlike typical rom-com’s, Rendu Rellu Aaru starts off with an interesting cardiomyopathy point. Cut to 22 years, Madhavan (Anil) and Meghana (Mahima) are foes. Though they live in the same colony, their fathers are friends, their houses are opposite to each other and they were even born on the same day in same hospital. The two are inseparable, but not in love. Then there comes a day when Maddy and Maggie has to part their ways due to a small conflict in their personal lives. If you know your Vijaya Bhaskar, Srinu Vaitla and Mani Ratnam, you know what happens next.
As a plot, Rendu Rellu Aaru deals with an interesting point of two fathers exchanging their kids who are suffering with a rare heart condition to please their wives. They don’t really think twice about the complications that arise after exchange and this start-up by the director is impressive. On contrary, the movie start sliding down the drain exactly after this brilliant set up. As an audience member you wait what will happen when the truth is front of the young lot and also in front of the mothers. You want to see how the mothers will react to this indigestible matter but writer-director doesn’t really explore that part. He looks to give the story an open end and we wonder if that is the right choice.
If you see, in the past Mayabazar (1957) wasn’t an innovative point, it was presented in a innovative way. In fact, Mayabazar is a famous drama that’s played by Surabhi and makers except for some characters did not change much of the script from what the theatre group used to enact on stage. And when you take an example like Sankarabaranam (1980), even in that movie there are many cliches but the maker in K. Vishwanath broke free from them in a gradual manner. Still, audience debated on how a scene could have been and what it should have been. Sankara Sastry would not have been an iconic character had he did not confront the rock band that was singing on the roof top. Balu in Sagara Sangamam (1983) needed to see his friend, Jayaprada once again to feel some positivity in his life.
Confrontations and emotions are the basics of a story and we need to explore them. However, innovative we might want to go with the script and screenplay, they provide the heart and soul to a dead beat character. An story is always a journey of a character and the brilliant characters of both the fathers, could have shone brighter had the movie tried to focus on their guilt more. In a penchant to make it funny, make it real and new, director did seem to have a miss a point here. Mani Ratnam had to let Surya in Thalapathi (1991) know that the person he despises most is his brother. That led an audience member to keep him in his place and then wonder what he or she would have done and connect with Rajnikanth. All I want to say, is when you have an idea that can be explored in all directions let it flow and try and bring your stamp on you handle that portion. That makes the difference between a filmmaker and a director. The choice matters. There are several mistakes within the screenplay too, but as the director shows some honesty in handling the parts, I would not like to pinpoint on them much.
Performance wise, Ravi Kale and Naresh Sr. once again try to prove their versatility and are a real treat to watch. Surprisingly mothers Aishwarya Gorak and Pramodhini Saroja get only few scenes in a script that largely has focus on them. Against all indications given by its “Spoiler Trailer”, the film doesn’t have any confrontation scenes between the parents ignited with some fiery lines. Whereas, lead actor Anil could have delivered much more with some extra focus whereas Thagubothu Ramesh continues to overplay his forced cameo. Telugu girl Mahima needs to get over her serial style acting to pursue her career further as a lead actress. She looks good and a little bit fine tuning will help her succeed.
Technically Vijay Bulganin songs and background score are big boost for this small film, while cinematography by Amarnath Reddy and Editing by Rama Rao are just functional.
What is Mahabharata without Karna and Kunti confrontation? How is Yashoda a greater mother than Devaki if she hadn’t known that Krishna is not her son? Is there any meaning to Shakuni’s rebel and revenge had he not known Gandhari is being married off to a blind Prince who won’t be a King? The strength of your story lies in characters expressing the pain and ambiguity. Growing from them and leaning from them. Sidelining an emotional turmoil a mother would face and concentrating on father’s happiness and not completely exploring their guilt factor doesn’t help this script much.
There are few beautiful scenes that depict the father and child relationship and one wonders how could this director who is showing so much prowess in understanding a bond and relationship is faltering in showing the budding romance between two frienemies and neighbours? Well, he might have feared the fact that already several movies like Nuvve Kavali and Anandam explored that part. Exactly, I too feel, had he concentrated more on the parents angle of the story, detailed cardiomyopathy and constructed the romance of the youngsters differently, the movie could have been much much better. One last parting thought, Prakash in Geethanjali (1989) needed Girija to motivate him and Girija needed to accept the fate and embrace the reality which she finally does and movie ends there. Had this Two father’s decision, 22 years and six lives, story also tried to add a little more nuances like Geetanjali, may be the romance would not have been too stale. This is a missed opportunity, I MUST SAY!!