Gopanna (Nagarjuna) is a happy-go-lucky guy and marries his childhood love Kamala (Sneha). He secures the job of Tahasildar for Husnabad on the recommendation of his maternal uncles Akkanna and Madanna. He gets inspired by the devotion shown by Dammakka towards Lord Rama and the way she protects the idols of Rama, Seeta and Lakshmana. He becomes a great devotee of Lord Rama over night. He vows that he would stay in open place just like statue of Lord Rama till a temple is constructed. He collects 6 lakhs of coins through donations and constructs Rama temple in Bhadrachalam with the guidance of his guru Kabir Das (ANR). A few ill-minded people misinform emperor Taanisha (Nasseer) that Gopanna misused emperor’s money to construct temple. Meanwhile, Kabir Das confers Gopanna the title of Sri Ramadasu on the insistence of Lord Rama. The rest of the story is all about how Tanisha realizes his mistake and sets Sri Ramadasu free.
Nagarjuna: Nagarjuna is perhaps the most luckiest hero among his contemporaries for getting such roles like Annamayya and Sri Ramadasu. He did extremely well in the title role. His histrionics in the last reel where ‘Dasaradhi’ song comes are extraordinary. Nobody knows how Sri Ramadasu looks like and whenever we think about Sri Ramadasu in the future, the image of Nagarjuna becomes the visual aid.
Others: ANR acted in the vital role of Kabir Das. He brought believability to this character that is considered as guru to Ramadasu. Sneha is fabulous as devoted wife of Ramadasu. Sujatha donned one of the most important roles in this film as Dammakka. She injects devotion into the soul of Gopanna with her deeds. Suman is good as Lord Rama. Nasseer is appropriate in the role of Tanisha. Veda is fair as Seeta. Nagababu is pretty good in the role of Ravana. Among the comedians Sunil and Brahmanandam are impressive.
Screenplay - Direction: K Raghavendra Rao has the uncanny ability of striking back whenever everybody writes him off. K Raghavendra Rao proved again why he is called a legendry commercial director with this film. He narrated the entire film in a simple way by giving more importance to the emotions than the grandeur. He made sure that the emotions graph goes up as the film progresses by capturing the attention of audiences. He used pretty good commercial elements in the last half an hour of the film. The thread of parrot is nicely woven into the story.
Music: Songs and rerecording by MM Keeravani is the biggest asset of Sri Ramadasu. We have 19 songs in this film and all songs are neatly blended into the storyline. Backgrund music is terrific. Keeravani’s background music for Sri Ramadasu is another fine example for how good music increases the emotional depth of the film. The last three songs (Yento Ruchira, Ishvakulaku and Dasarathi) take the film into different level.
Other departments: Cinematography by S Gopal Reddy is very good. Script by JK Bharavi is a plus point. The dialogues are very meaningful and appropriate. Especially the one - ‘Sreeramudiki nuvvu gudi kattinchavu. Ninnu Sreeramudu gundello vunchukunnadu’. The powerful dialogues written for Nagarjuna in Tanisha court in second half got great response. Editing by Srikar Prasad is fine. Artwork by Bhaskara Raju is good. Producer Konda Krisham Raju should be appreciated for coming forward to make such a different film.
The first half of the film is decent. The emotional graph starts growing up from ‘Antha Ramamayam’ song and goes to the peak by the film reaches climax. Second half of the film is very good. The plus points of this film are Nagarjuna’s histrionics, Keeravani’s music, K Raghavendra Rao’s direction of JK Bharavi’s script. Sri Ramadasu film comes as fresh breeze when we are bombarded with routine and formula flicks. I recommend this devotional flick to everybody.
Sri Ramadasu Links
reviews of previous 5 films