Sri Bharatha Baahubali Movie Review: A medley of love, laughter, and sacrifice that partly works
Director Manju Mandavya has handled several different duties, including playing the lead, writing screenplay, lyrics and even production, and his stress level gets reflected in the film
Stories around adopted children trying to find their biological parents is a tried and tested idea. Mounting his film, Sri Bharatha Baahubali, on a similar idea, director Manju Mandavya impresses by weaving the subject with various subplots and a strong underlying theme of sacrifice.
Cast: Manju Mandavya, Chikkanna, and Sarah Harish
Director: Manju Mandavya
The story deals with how untoward circumstances lead Sri (Sarah Harish) to live miles away from her birthplace. However, certain memories from when she was a child — the Baahubali statue, a deep well, a falling stone, the giant wheel, and certain character sketches — come back to haunt Sri during sleep. She decides to trace her past and accompanied by her friend, lands up in a village. There, Sri has to bail out Bharatha (Manju Mandavya) and Baahubali (Chikkanna) because she gets to know that only they can help her find her roots. The two, known to live a free-spirited life, initially try to fool Sri, only to realise the trials she is going through, and her longing to meet her parents. How Bharatha and Baahubali trace Sri’s parents is the crux of the story. The twist in the plot during the climax is quite thoughtful, and was received warmly by the audience.
Director Manju has also shouldered the responsibility for the dialogues as well as the screenplay, lyrics, and even production responsibilities. While the all-rounder has handled the challenging tasks with a sincerity which must be lauded, his stress level gets reflected in the film.
Managing the runtime is often a challenge for filmmakers and this is also the case with Sri Bharatha Baahubali. Considering the core matter of the film lies in its second half, the first part of the story, which is set in the village backdrop — even though it acts as a link — tests the viewers’ patience.
It seems like Manju Mandavya, who has also turned hero in his directorial, has tried to work extra on his looks in the film, as well as his body language, which is obvious. Chikkanna plays the parallel lead. And with his presence, there is no dearth of comedy, though this gets lost towards the end.
The period episode of Bharatha and Baahubali is very informative. The film is Sarah Harish’s debut, and the model-turned-actor has given her best, but there is a lot of room for improvement. The rest of the characters, like Achyuth Kumar, Rishi, and Srinivas Murthy, come and go. There are a few fun elements too, but they are far and few in between.
Music director Manikanth Kadri has given a couple of good medleys, but a little more effort was required from the cinematographer and editor to push the film.
On the whole, Sri Bharatha Baahubali, which runs on comedy, action, love, and sacrifice, works only in parts.