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Movie review - Naaga
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Jeevi rating: 2.75/5
: 2 much of politics & voilence
Genre: Action
Banner: Sri Surya Movies
: NTR, Sadaf, Jennifer, raghuvaran, Sudha, Varsha, Sunil, Srinivas Reddy, Venu Madhav, Nazar, Rajan P Dev, Prudhvi, Paruchuri Gopala Krishna, LB Sriram, MS Narayana, Rajeev Kanakala, Shakeela, PJ Sharma, Jenni, Rambha, Anand and Surya
Story: Sri Surya Movies
Music: Vidya Sagar - Deva
Songs: AM Ratnam, Kula Sekhar, Chandra Bose
Art: Anand Sai
Cinematography: Ravindra Babu
Stunts: Vikram Dharma
Editing: Kola Bhaskar
Screenplay - Producer: AM Ratnam
Base Story - Direction: DK Suresh
Release date: 10th January 2003


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Nagaraju (NTR) is a law student and the son of a bantroth (Raghuvaran) - the white dressed man who stands besides judge. Bantroth's ambition in life is to see his son Naaga as a truthful and noble lawyer serving the society. In that process, he spends lot of money on Naaga though he could not financially afford such a costly education.

Chandra Sekhara Naidu (Nazar) is the CM of the state. The Home Minister (Rajan P Dev) is looking for an opportunity to destabilize CM. The HM has an illegitimate affair with a wonton woman under the guise of social worker called Mandaram (Shakeela). Mandaram has insatiable thirst for the power. She pressurizes HM to make her an MLA when an assembly position falls vacant. When CM refuses to give ticket to Mandaram, the HM join hands with an opposition leader Potti Kasaiah (Paruchuri Gopala Krishna) and launches Mandaram as an independent candidate. In one of such political rally campaigns, the goons happen to enter the house of Naaga due to some petty quarrel. In the process, they bruise Naaga's father and sister. In a fist of anger, Naaga beats those guys black and blue. Those guys file a case on Naaga for injuring them.

Naaga impresses one and all in the court by saying how the political campaigns and street rallies are affecting the privacy and comfort of common citizens. He also suggests that the politicians should use electronic media for campaign instead of wasting money by trying to influence voters with unfair means. His argument becomes the talk of the town and the headlines in various newspapers. The CM also gets impressed with Naaga. All the students unions in AP join hands with Naaga to establish youth student organizations under one roof in the leadership of Naaga.

Naaga campaigns for the ruling party candidate and contributes his part in the victory. An impressed CM appoints Naaga as the youth leader for his ruling party. The opposition party uses the current draught situation in the state as the weapon to destabilize government. As a reply to this, CM starts fast-unto-death for Central Government's intervention in this water issue. Due to some miscommunication, Naaga starts creating law and order problem to make sure that CM stops his fast-unto-death and rule the state again. Father of Naaga dies in the process.

The rest of the story is all about how Naaga overcame all the hurdles and emerge unscathed as a winner.


NTR: This movie is made for NTR and hence all the frames and scenes in the film revolve around NTR. He did his best in dances and histrionics. His expressions in ferocious and pathos scenes are effortless. He is at home with his characterization and did full justice as an actor for his role. His dances are also pretty entertaining. However, the director created confusion in the characterization of NTR by infusing too much of aggression in seemingly an underplayed political film.

Sada and Jennifer: Sada, who stole the hearts of youth with her village belle getup in Jayam, has disappointed the crowds with this film. Her role is very short and she did not suit the role well. Jennifer is just a prop in this film for a couple of songs and a couple of scenes. Her character is not at all useful for the story.

Raghuvaran: Raghuvaran played the role of Bantroth and NTR's father. Raghuvaran, who is seen as a rich father or sophisticated villain so far has done a character of a middleclass, honest and poor father. His sophistication and body language does not suit for such humble middle class characters though he gave his best shot.

Paruchuri Gopala Krishna: His character of Potti Kasaiah is a natural extension of his double-statement character in 'Prathidhvani'. He entertained crowds through his political satires.

Nazar: Nazar did a role of honest Chief Minister who encourages genuine talents and earnestly work for the people.

Rajan P Dev: The characterization of Rajan P Dev is a big let down. Rajan, who donned powerful roles of ruthless villain in Kushi and Aadi did a sober kind of underplayed political leader. Hence there is no kick in his role.

Others: Shekeela is given an apt role in this film. She did justice to the role of a greedy woman with comical outlook. Sudha got a role where she can emote well. Sunil did the role of Naaga buddy and provided some entertainment in first half.

Technical Departments:

Story: Story by Surya Movies is a serious one with no scope for entertainment. There are so many unrealistic points in this movie, which are very hard to conceive and believe. A better narration and interesting screenplay could have plugged these holes. Too much usage of violence and politics has taken the flavor of entertainment out of the film.

Screenplay: Screenplay by AM Ratnam needs clarity. But he overplayed the character of NTR. He tried the pattern of Shankar's 'Oke Okkadu' for this film. But Shankar handled that film well by underplaying the character of Arjun most of the times and got the mass hero in Arjun out for a very few scenes where it was essential. In an attempt to write a screenplay that is fundamentally similar to that of 'Oke Okkadu', AM Ratnam ignored the underplay angle and tried to boost up the image of NTR in mass style from first frame to the last frame. Hence the mismatch of theme of the film and treatment of hero has made the screenplay look pretty mediocre in the first half and confused the crowds in the second half.

Direction: DK Suresh direction is average. He failed to provide nativity touch and in few sentimental scenes we feel like we are watching a Tamil dubbed film.

Dialogues: Paruchuri brothers have done some terrific work in terms of dialogues in this film. There are 6-7 powerful dialogues. The best dialogue is - Janaalu Kulam kosam chastaaru. Matham kosam chastaaru. Kaani Rashtram kosam chavadam lone vundi raajasam. NTR utters this dialogue with CM and then gives a typical Rajnikanth's style of wish followed by Rajni's Namaskar. Another Rajni'sh dialogue in this film is 'Nenu edi modalu pettanu. Kaani okkasaari modalu pettaaka daani antham choose varaku vadili pettanu'. Paruchuri brothers have saved some witty dialogues for Potti Kasaish role of Paruchuri Gopala Krishna. Gopala Krishna referred to NTR as 'buddodu kaadu bulldozer'

Music: Music by Deva and Vidya Sagar has mass orientation. The background music is OK. There is no smoothness in background music.

Stunts: Stunts by Vikram Dharma are pretty good. The stylishness and conceptualization of the first fight is awesome. But too much of anything is not good for digestion. There are too many fights and chases in this film.

Songs: There are six songs in this film. Out of six songs, the last song has got tremendous response, mainly because it is merged with the situation in film and it comes as a part of the story narration.

1. Macarina Macarina: This song is taken on NTR and Jennifer in various stadiums in Hyderabad. This song has got some real good mass steps by NTR.

2. Oka kontepillane: This is a college stage show song between NTR and Sada. The pattern and set chosen for this song has striking similarities with that of 'Ammaye Sannaga' from Kushi film.

3. Dhool, anakapally centerlo: This song comes as a celebration song when CM chooses NTR as party's youth leader. This song is pictured on NTR, Sada, Jennifer and buddies of NTR. The re-recording of this song is not good.

4. MeghamKarigenu: This song comes when Sada teases NTR and then falls into waterfalls when NTR chases her. The pattern for this song is taken from Jyotika's solo from Tamil Kushi. This song is taken in folk style in picturesque natural locations.

5.Entha Chinna Muddu: This song comes in a very embarrassing situation. A badly bruised NTR goes to Jennifer house for protection. She cleans the mud on his body and while cleaning the suffering NTR, she kisses NTR and a song appears from nowhere. Because of the placement, this song has not got its due credit.

6. Nayudoripilla: This song is the best of the lot. Lawrence composed the steps. Rambha who did a special appearance has slimmed down a lot. But all she did in this song is to parade herself as NTR took the center stage with his accentuating body movements. This song is well connected to the movie's flow. NTR has done some terrific steps for this song.

Photography: Photography by Ravindra Babu is very good. But it's the editing and postproduction effects that make the photography glossier. Some times it appears like the reel is rotated at higher rpm so that frames come faster than the usual speed.

Production: AM Ratnam has done some terrific job as producer. There are lots of scenes that involve thousands of junior artists to be presented at location to create crowd effects. AM Ratnam has spent lot of money for this film as per the subject's demand.

AM Ratnam, who always preferred hero to be the part of the story has taken U turn and made this film by making the story a part of the hero. In an attempt to create a subject that caters to the masses, he gave too much preference to the unwanted violence and excessive stunts. There by he had nothing offer to the female audiences except for few sentimental scenes that have the scent of Tamil. A hero can only be as powerful as villain. If the hero is a mass hero, the director needs to create an equally powerful and dreadsome villain. If the hero is a strategic hero, the director needs to create such scenes where the tacit tactics of hero gets elevated (like those in Shankar films like Gentleman, Bharateeyudu and Oke Okkadu). By having a villain who looks absolutely weak and projecting a hero who is unbelievably heroic, the director could not balance the good and evil equation in the film. The first half of this film is decent and sensible to certain extent. But the story in second half meanders aimlessly and bores you to certain extent. The main asset of the film is NTR and one may watch this film once for NTR.

Trade Talk: The universal talk about is film is that first half is average and second half had drawbacks. Considering the current form of NTR and advantage of not having big opposition for Pongal (10 Jan -14 Jan), this film has the chances of becoming an average fare. The trade pundit opine that it's a too much of burden on 5-film old youth hero like NTR to have 190 print release with a weak storyline. However the openings for this film are terrific.

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