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Telugu Movie review - Gaganam

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Jeevi rating: 3.25/5
: hijack drama
Bilingual (Payanam in Tamil)
Sri Venkateswara Creations

Cast: Nagarjuna, Prakash Raj, Brahmanandam, Poonam Kaur, Thalaivasal Vijay, Dr. Bharat Reddy, Ravi Prakash, Pruthvi, Poonam Kaur, Sana Khan, Sri Lakshmi etc.

Music: Praveen Mani
KV Guhan
Marthand K Venkatesh
: Anuradha Umarji
Story - screenplay - direction:
Radha Mohan
Presented by
: Matinee Entertainment
Dil Raju
Release date
: 11 February 2011
Theater watched: Preview theater, Prasad Film Labs, Hyderabad



gaganam A flight takes off from Chennai and destined to New Delhi. It is hijacked by a group of terrorists and the flight is forcibly landed in Tirupati due to a technical snag. The hijackers want the release of their leader Yousuf (a dreaded terrorist). Viswanath (Prakash Raj) is the national home secretary and he negotiates with the terrorists. Raveendra (Nagarjuna) heads the team of National Security Guards. The government decides to release Yousuf and something unexpected happens which leads the entire process to go haywire. The rest of the story is all about how Raveendra plans a strategy and saves the passengers.

Artists Performance

gaganam Nagarjuna: Nagarjuna is probably one of the huge heroes of Telugu cinema who doesn’t give a damn about formulas and commercial elements if he sees something special in the story element or in the director. Gaganam is a kind of movie where Nagarjuna’s image helps the movie in attracting wider range of audiences. Nagarjuna plays the role of a National Security Guard who is torn between government decision and his natural instincts. Nagarjuna came up with a fabulous performance as NSG commando.

gaganamOthers: Prakash Raj plays the role of negotiator and he is excellent. Thalaivasal Vijay is a traveller with military background and he brings believability to the character. Sana Khan did the role of one of the passengers. Brahmanandam plays an entertaining role of a out-of-favor film director. Bharat Reddy is convincing as an associate of Nagarjuna. Poonam Kaur did air hostess role and she is a good actress. Harsha Vardhan plays the role of a TV journalist who is desperate for breaking news. His work in the altercation with Nagarjuna is pretty good. Prithvi plays the role of a film hero who captures terrorist Yousuf in one of his movies. Ravi Prakash did the role of one of the pilots. Most of the other actors belong to other languages. The guy who did the role of an actor is perfectly cast.

Technical departments

gaganamStory - screenplay - direction: The story of Gaganam is pretty new to Telugu cinema. It is a hijack drama with a bit of entertainment induced. Director Radha Mohan has two options to treat the movie. One is to make an intense drama with lots of action orientation. The other one is to make it a realistic film just the way it takes place in real life. Since it is going to be a serious film if he dealt in a realistic way, the director induced humor into the film in terms of a couple of characters on the flight and and Brahmanandam/actor characters in the negotiation room. He has chosen a few characters in the passenger list and created scenes about how they react in the time of hijacking. Screenplay of the movie is good with a nice twist in the interval. The following scenes of the film deserves appreciation

1. The argument between Nagarjuna and Harsha about media ethics.
2. The interval twist
3. The kid’s thread
4. The new character’s introduction towards climax

The following things should have been taken care of

1. Most of the small-time characters in the movie are not from Telugu film industry. Casting Telugu actors would have been an advantage.
2. Most of the passengers who are hijacked appear serene and calm after a day. (May be it is true in the real hijack incidents, but the audiences would like to have more tensed-up set-up/ambiance).
3. Gaganam is a film made on hijack and inducing comedy in the film might dilute the seriousness of the plot.

gaganamOther departments: Background music by Praveen Mani is appropriate. KV Guhan has shot the movie using digital cameras and he comes up with a nice job. Art direction of Khadir is good with realistic sets. The set of the flight and airport was constructed in Ramoji Film City and there are hills present in the backdrop (just like in Tirupati). Dialogues by Umarji Anuradha complements the story. Editing by Marthand K Venkatesh is nice. Producers Dil Raju and Niranjan (Matinee Entertainment) should be commended for putting their money on a different/non-commercial movie.

gaganamAnalysis: Gaganam film is made against many odds. There are no songs (duets/situational). There is no heroine. There are no different locations (90% of the movie takes place in airport). There are no mass dialogues. And it sports Nagarjuna, who is the most romantic hero of Telugu cinema playing the main character. A film of this nature should be appreciated as the success of these kind of movies will augment more and more novel films to be made. The plus points of the movie are Nagarjuna’s presence, novel plot and realistic story telling. On the flip side, Telugu casting for small characters would have been good and humor orientation for a serious plot might dilute the effectiveness. On a whole, Gaganam is a decent film which should be watched with an open mind.

Gaganam Links
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Press meet 1

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Jeevi reviews of previous 5 films
Jai Bolo Telangana
Ala Modalaindi
Golkonda High School
Anaganaga O Dheerudu
Manmadha Banam
Kathi Kantha Rao
Rakta Charitra 2
Yemaindi Ee Vela
Kalyanram Kathi
Rakta Charitra 1
Saradaga kasepu
Komaram Puli
Don Seenu
Maryada Ramanna
Jhummandi Naadam

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