Urvasivo Rakshasivo Movie Review: A simple rom-com that largely works
The remake of the Pyaar Prema Kadhal is an entertaining outing that respects the themes of the original
Urvasivo Rakshasivo, the official remake of the 2018 Tamil film, Pyaar Prema Kadhal, largely benefits from having a solid source material to rely on while also smartly accentuating the fun factor in the original.
Starring: Allu Sirish, Anu Emmanuel, Sunil, Vennela Kishore
Directed by: Rakesh Sashii
The story and the conflict remain unscathed but the film offers a different experience, particularly because it gravitates more toward being a comedy than a romance. For example, when lovers Sree Kumar (Allu Sirish) and Sindhuja (Anu Emmanuel) decide to get serious about their relationship and start living together in a penthouse, the film treats the man's struggles to keep his relationship a secret from his conservative parents like an elaborate comedy skit that compares his life to a cricket match. We get his friend Sathish (the ever-reliable Vennela Kishore) and his uncle Chitti (Sunil, in his best comic role in years) to double up as cricket commentators who draw an analogy between his travails and sport. A shot of Sree Kumar running from his parent’s house to the penthouse becomes a representation of a batsman running between the wickets. There are many such smartly staged moments—a running gag involves Sunil, who plays a tailor, show up in odd situations with his sewing machine to offer advice to Sree Kumar—that work in this film, which is more of an adaptation than a scene-by-scene remake.
It also helps that every facet of this film is pitched one notch higher than the original—be it comedy or seriousness. The conflict between the lead characters—love vs the institution of marriage—is neatly pronounced. The orthodox nature of Sree Kumar’s mother and her desire to see her son get married to a nice, “homely” girl who can run errands in the house is spelled out in many scenes. Even Sindhuja’s passion and goals are treated with respect. When the breaking point eventually arrives for the couple, it is incited by a heavily dramatic and serious incident. In fact, the inclusion of a character not present in the original—that of a middle-aged lady janitor in the IT office the lead characters work in—brings in certain warmth and meaning to the overall scheme of things. Her words and experiences are given importance at a crucial juncture and it is a choice I particularly admired in Urvasivo Rakshasivo. Of course, there are a few choices that are inclined towards the cliched. For instance, when Sree Kumar is befuddled with the fact that Sindhuja treats love as a more serious concept than sex, we see him get drunk and break into a song that warns men to be aware of women. Such choices undo the progressive themes the film tries to propagate.
On the craft-wise, Urvasivo Rakshasivo benefits hugely from a lovely soundtrack by Achu Rajamani and Anup Rubens, which adds much-needed value to the proceedings. There’s hardly anything to dislike about this film, both as a remake and a standalone product, considering its sincerity to the original’s theme and thanks to the comedy, which doesn’t distract us from the bigger picture. Urvasivo Rakshasivo succeeds both as a romance and a comedy.