12 July 2012
Film: Eega/ Naan EE
Punchline: Magadheera meets Devar Films
Banner: Vaarahi Chalanachitram/ PVP Cinema
Cast: Nani, Sudeep, Samantha, Tagubothu (Kudikaaran) Ramesh, Devadarshini, Aditya, Santhanam and Eega.
Music: MM Keeravani / Credited as Maragadhamani in Tamil
Lyricists: Rama Jogayya Shastri, Chaitanya Prasad, Ananth Sriram and MM Keeravani/ Madhan Karky (Tamil)
Dialogues: Janardhan Maharshi/ Crazy Mohan
Cinematography: KK Senthil Kumar
Art: S Ravinder
Editing: Kotagiri Venkateswara Rao
Visual FX: Makuta FX
Story - screenplay - direction: SS Rajamouli
Presented by: D Suresh Babu/ Pearl V Potluri
Producers: Sai Korapati/ Param V Potluri
Release date: 6 July 2012
Eega is easily one of the best films to come out of Indian Cinema in recent times. Daring, Gutsy, Adventurous, Exciting, Roller Coaster fun is what best describes Master Director SS Rajamouli. Anyone can write a story with a fly but it needs a visionary like Rajamouli to make it real with the best possible output.
Eega's story was never a mystery. Even before it went on floors, SS Rajamouli had narrated his storyline to the Twitterverse and with the trailer, he made it very clear that there is no twist and it is just a simple revenge story by a fly. If it was any other director, I would have been least bothered and would have deemed it a freaking waste of time to make a film with a storyline that has been made million times in World Cinema, including SS Rajamouli's award winning Magadheera which dealt with the same reincarnation concept.
I have this habit of collecting quotes and I am very picky at it. For a quote to be in my desk, It has to be incredibly inspiring and one such is a quote by SS Rajamouli in December 2010, that changed the way I write screenplays. Here is the quote:
Every REEL needs to have an EMOTIONAL HIGH - Be it Laughter, Sorrow, Anger, Fight...anything! - SS Rajamouli
Not a lot of screenwriters reveal their USP and here is one man who has leaked his secret weapon 2 years back and I am sure not a lot of them took serious note of it. SS Rajamouli is a live example of his quote and with 9 straight blockbusters ever since his debut with Student No. 1.
Trust me, This formula works even if the story is horrendous. Try it out. Take you script and apply this and I bet you have a refreshed screenplay that your friends, family hated, will now be raved. From personal experiences.
OK. Back to Eega/ Naan EE. Critics are raving about the film, Celebrities are going ga ga about the film and People all over the world are loving the film and enjoying it thoroughly. With a share of $17,000 average per theater in the US, it is beyond doubt that it is another Sure Shot blockbuster for SS Rajamouli.
What makes Eega/Naan EE special? The team behind the film, ofcourse!
Naani is charming and good...very sweet performance. His Love is what makes Eega's gestures strong and emotional! Playing a road side romeo, Naani is at his best with his natural stammering tanglish dialogues. His Profession as a Speciality Cracker Designer is again a novel one and also plays a crucial part in the Climax.
Samantha - Gorgeous and Powerful acting. Anyone will fall in love with her...character. Again, Chinmayi's dubbing, as usual excellent. She plays a micro artist in the film and Kudos to SS Rajamouli for bringing Micro Artists to limelight.
Sudeep... Marvelous Performance. Kannada superstar joins the list of powerful villains in Indian cinema. A hero as a villain, What we all thought could only be done by Rajni and Ajith, Kicha Sudeep is a brilliant find for South Indian Cinema. Wonder what he was doing in the sinking Kannada Films. Probably helping it survive. So much of talent and class. He has got sharp features including the Trademark 'Kannadiga' nose. Kannada film fans will be seeing a little less of him in the days to come. Looking forward to more of him.
Tantra reminds me of the 'Mad guy' in SuperStar Rajnikanth's Baba. Santhanam in Naan EE delivers a superb performance in his small guest appearance. Devadarshini is okay. Aditya is superb as Sudeep's partner and has got a nice role to portray.
VFX...is top class for the budget that has been put in! Makuta VFX has once again set a benchmark! No wonder there was a delay..was perfect! Kamal once said, "If you dont see special effects in the film, only then it means Top Notch VFX" and that quote is true with Eega. Eega takes you down so emotionally right from Frame 1, when Eega enters SS Rajamouli's daughter Ms. Mayookha's mouth and comes out..that you forget that it is a film that is filled with VFX.
Janardhan Maharshi and Crazy Mohan are peppy and fun, neat and elegant! None too cinematic, Straight out of life dialogues makes the dialogues lovable.
Another SS Rajamouli constant, Award winning Kotagiri Venkateswara rao's Editing is top notch and keeps the right pace at all times! Some people complained about a lag in the first few minutes post interval, I felt it was entertaining and was very much necessary for the progress of the film. The Mass also needs to be kept in mind at some points. In the case of Eega/ Naan EE, Kids are a major pull to the film and they need to be given their entertainment.
Costume Design by Mrs. Rama Rajamouli is superb. Be it Road side Naani or Suit clad Sudeep or Gorgeous Samantha, it is super cool and pleasant. Production design is rich and that is Rajamouli's USP and Ravinder does a neat job!
MM Keeravani's (Credited as Maragadamani) background score is haunting...very fresh and it stands out and gives life to Eega/ Ee. Lava Lava...for Sudeep and Arey Arey Arey for Eega/ Naan EE. Songs are nice. Peppy, different..My Name is NaaNi..reminds of the super famous 'My name is Billa...". Lyrics are super good. Madhan Karky as a one man army does a remarkable job in Naan EE. Rama Jogayya Shastri, Ananth Sriram and Chaitanya prasad along with MM Keeravani does a phenomenal job in the Telugu version, Eega.
One request to Music Producer/Distributor: Please release the 'soul stirring' background score asap DOT.
And how can one forget Senthil's Phenomenal Cinematography. A tough film to shoot. Would have been a challenge. He would have had to unlearn a few things, learn new things. A different Pre Production and Post production workflow would have been a tough challenge. Only a master technician can shoot this. Senthil moves up the ladder and shows the world that he is ready for bigger things.
Producers Suresh babu garu and Sai Korapati deserve a standing ovation for encouraging new genre and for understanding @ssrajamouli's vision.
SS Rajamouli's Eega is a winner. Eega is his Navaratna. Period. Naan EE in tamil is one of the best debuts! One cant ask for more. Naan EE response reminds me of Shankar's debut 'Gentleman', in terms of collection, name & fame. And in the current industry, this is even better and Phenomenal.
Product Placement- 'Hit' plays a major role and I wonder if the owners paid money to get their product advertised. This is a good way of earning money for producers.
Each and every technician deserves a standing ovation and Sorry for not mentioning your names. But I made sure I sat back and saw your names and cheered for every name!
Naveen works at the Bourne Franchise in Universal Studios and is a LA based Cinematographer specialized in 3D; Film Maker; Entertainment Technology Entrepreneur; Alumnus of London School of Economics & Political Sciences , NY Film Academy and University of California, Los Angeles.
naveen at naveenvaradarajan dot com