Santosh Srinivas’s Rabhasa (2014) Movie Review
Cast: Jr Ntr, Samantha Ruth Prabhu, Pranitha Subhash, Nagineedu, Brahmaji, Brahmanandam and Nasser
Music Director: Thaman SS
Director: Santosh Srinivas
Editor: Kotagiri Venkateshwara Rao
Censor Certificate: A
Run-time: 162.15 Minutes
Indu (Samantha) tries to escape her friend from a marriage, when Gangi Reddy’s son Bulli Reddy tries to marry her. Accidently Karthik saves Indu’s friends life from Gangi Reddy and his gang, from that instance Indu starts searching for him. Dhananjayalu (Shayaji) father of Indu, who is against the love marriages, So Indu doesn’t want to fall in love. But, her heart wishes that her boyfriend should be like the one who saved her friend from the goons. In the meantime, Karthik’s mother (Jayasudha) asks him to marry his niece who turns out to be Indu. But by that time, Indu starts liking Vamsi (Nandu) and Karthik helps her to find her love. This makes both of them turn good friends. Will Dhananjayalu accept Karthik’s love? Who is Nandu? Will Gangi Reddy leave Karthik alive? In short a same old routine family drama which we have been seeing from years concludes the things.
On the acting front starting with Jr. NTR, we have seen him this kind of Character before, but this is no Brindhavanam. Here Jr NTR is serious, strong and romantic all in extreme doses and delivers the right tone for the film as a whole. Pranitha Subhash, puts on a great show of beauty, but the performance in the film is by Samanth Ruth Prabhu as spunky girl. Her portrayal of Indu is real and seems effortless with the ease she essays it. Brahmanandam is excellent as Raju, leaving no room for anything but praise. Naagi Needu, Shayaji Shinde, Raghu Babu, Nasser and Ajay are good in their limited roles. Brahmaji, Tanikella Bharini and Nandu just made their presence felt. Veteran actresses Jayasudha and Seeta didn’t have much to do in the film. Ali opening scene evokes laughter but the repetition of similar scenes bores the audiences.
Story of this film is routine. After the passable first half, we are introduced to the drama and over dose action of the second. Where Indu comes to know about Karthik. Even Vamsi also surfaces. Santosh Srinivas has fallen into the formulaic pattern more so in the second half. As a writer, Santosh Srinivas writes a routine first half. He has of course the wonted songs, over dose of fights with unwanted graphics and romance complecting in his script. Santosh has given Jr NTR the scope of doing a bit of everything – dance, fight and perform. In the process, Santosh failed to evolve every aspect in the film, it neither completely satisfies fans nor the regular audiences. Director even inspired from films like Siddhu From Srikakulam, Gunde Jallumandi,Chennai Express, Allari Alludu, Ready, Dhee for this film.
The running time of the film is around 162 minutes, long by some standards, But Kotagiri Venkateswara Rao might have faced a tough task in editing the film as the director lost grip on the story while scripting the screenplay. Coming to Music by Thaman SS, there are a couple of hummable tracks, mainly the “Rakhasi Rakhasi” and the romantic “Attu Ittu” , but otherwise not exactly a musical hit. The re-recording of the film didn’t sound so great on screen. Directorially Kandireega by Santosh Srinivas was a far more superior and funny, which had some decent character arc’s to the lead actors, Rabhasa is not necessarily a step back, but definitely a step forward in another direction (Commercial), as far as film is concerned. Even though it is a sincere effort on his part, the screenplay does not have the required depth to take the story or the family parts (too many subplots) forward in its narrative.
Cinematography by Shyam K Naidu is neat. Dialogues scripted by the director himself are good in parts. The fights are major drawback of the film and graphics supporting the fights completely takes off the natural look. Production Values of Sri Lakshmi Narasimha Productions are rich.
Rabhasa would have been a far better film, had the screenplay been more liberal with expanding on key elements and developing the sub plots in a more engaging manner. Don’t go to the theatres just by seeing the name of Jr NTR or Santosh Srinivas, the director who had earlier directed a decent and funny family subject Kandireega. It is not known where all his skills in penning a decent story and screenplay have gone. The first half tests the patience of the audience and the second half is predictable, but works a bit due to Brahmanandam’s episodes in the middle. If you’re Jr NTR fan, then Rabhasa comes with a one time watch tag. But if you are looking for something different, then it’s better to avoid it in theatres and wait for its home edition.
Plus: Jr NTR, Brahmanandam Comedy, Female leads Oomph factor and Cinematography
Minus: Fights, Graphics, Editing, Under developed Screeenplay, Predictable Narration and Routine Story
Bottomline: Expect the Expected
Survi Review: 2/5