Movie Review: Gautamiputra Satakarni
Cast: Nandamuri Balakrishna, Shriya, Hema Malini, Kabir Bedi, Milind Gunaji, Farah Karimi, Tanikella Bharani, Subhalekha Sudhakar and Others.
Music: Chiranthan Bhatt
Dialogues: Sai Madhav Burra
Producer: Sai Bab Jagarlamudi - Rajeev Reddy
Story, Screenplay & Direction: Krish Jagarlamudi
Release Date: 12th January 2017
Gautamiputra Satakarni caught the attention of Telugus ever since the news of Nandamuri Balakrishna okaying the inspiring story of India's Greatest Emperor surfaced. Posters & Promos has only given a feel of Epic in the making. Can Nata Simha make Telugus proud with his Century Flick? Let's see...
Satakarni (Balakrishna) have the dream of emerging as an Emperor of 'Bharata Kandam' by uniting various dynasties in India. After conquering South India, He implements his mission in North India. In the process, He risks the life of his Son and faces severe opposition from his Wife. However, Satakarni fulfills his dream of ruling Bharata Kandam with sheer determination despite all the odds. When everything appeared to be fine, A threat comes in the form of Foreigners. How did Satakarni fight back and establish himself as a greatest emperor forms rest of the tale!
Balakrishna believed in the subject of 'Gautamiputra Satakarni' so much that he finalized it as his 100th flick soon after Krish has given a 10 minutes narration. He breathed life into the character of Satakarni and carried the whole film on his shoulders from start to finish. Performance-wise, Balakrishna is exceptional as a Warrior or Emperor. Be it Dialogue Delivery or Expressions, He excelled in every aspect. He roared like a lion in the war-field sequences. Balayya could always be proud of his career-best performance in his landmark film. You can't even imagine anyone else doing the same role once after watching the movie.
Hema Malini as Mother of Satakarni added great value to the project. Shriya surprises audience with her extra-ordinary acting prowess. She appears in very glamourous avatars as well.
Kabir Bedi didn't have much scope to perform. Milind Gunaji is first rate. Tanikella Bharani does a fine job. Rest of the actors have played their parts to perfection.
Too Much Focus on War
Make-Up of Protagonist in Few Scenes
All the Technicians have contributed to the best of their abilities to make 'Gautamiputra Satakarni' an epic. Songs composed by Chiranthan Bhatt were pretty good. 'Saho Sarvabowma' & 'Mruga Nayana' are the best in the album. But it's his Background Score which gives goose bumps and takes the movie to a whole new level. Cinematography by Gananasekhar is fabulous. He used the lighting well to present an era which existed 2,000 years ago. His expertise is visible in the battlefield sequences. Art Direction is fabulous. Fight Masters deserve a special mention for composition of war scenes. Burra Sai Madhav yet again showed how good a writer he is with praise-worthy dialogues. Due to budget constraints, Krish didn't depend much on graphics but they were still appreciable. Krish took a huge risk both as a Director & Producer, fortunately it paid off. No other Director would have be able to wrap up the shoot of such a massive project in a span of 79 days and yet achieve superior quality outcome. Content-wise, 'Satakarni' is ahead of 'Baahubali'. Hats off to Krish for the way he narrated the subject and extracted the best output from artistes & technicians!
Mark These Words: 'Gautamiputra Satakarni' is a magnum opus which will make the Telugus proud. It's not an exaggeration to say 'Satakarni' is far superior to 'Baahubali' in terms of content although the Rajamouli directorial is way better when it comes to Visual Grandeur, Graphics & Production Values. Such is the range of Balakrishna's 100th Movie!
No one else except Balakrishna could have played Satakarni so well. And, Krish made it look like not even the Top Directors of Telugu Cinema might be able to achieve such an output. Both of them truly deserves all the accolades coming their way.
People might wonder how Krish managed to narrate the story of a great warrior in just 2 hours 15 minutes. Here, The Director focussed only on the life ambition of Satakarni and how he achieved it. A special mention for Krish's clarity of thought.
Combination scenes of Balayya & Shriya are high on Emotional Quotient, especially after she differs with his ideology. Action Episodes were shot well inspite of budget issues. Re-recording in the war-field sequence is pulsating. But, Audience get a feeling of war scenes dominating content after a point as they occupy more than half of the run-time.
Krish didn't add unnecessary commercial ingredients to appease fans but narrated the story sincerely and offered many moments which guarantee goose bumps. Forget about commercial aspects...just embrace this one of its kind movie.
Bottom Line: Made Telugus Proud Again!