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Neelakanta: Time-pass ride

By R G Vijayasarathy
December 22, 2006 18:34 IST
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Neelakanta is best of the many mediocre films of Ravichandran that were released this year.

More than anything else, young men will definitely enjoy actress Namitha's sensuous dance sequences in the Kannada film.

In fact, all the songs featuring Namitha and Ravichandran are a feast for an audience looking for glamour and some skin.

Time for the plot. Neelakanta is the man Friday of a rich family in which a young girl is being brought up by her uncle. The girl falls for Neelakanta. Neelakanta rejects her overtures. Meanwhile, he saves a girl from a prostitute and is forced to bring her to his village. The girl takes refuge in Neelakanta's relative's house. Then, Neelakanta is forced to marry the rich girl, against his mother's wishes. The mother is enraged, and Neelakanta's wife too suspects his relationship with the other girl. What happens next? Watch the film to know.

Ravichandran has acted well in the emotional sequences, but looks uncomfortable in the fight sequences. The surprise of the film is Namitha, who has excelled in a role with negative shades. A talented actress like Sri Devika is wasted. Even Sujatha, a fine actress, and Umashri, the most talented character artist in Kannada films, have not been used properly.

The film is a remake of Tamil director Raj Kiran's film Aranmanai Kili, which was released several years ago. But the director has chosen to quicken the pace of the film and also added more commercial elements into the narration. The impact of some emotional sequences in the second half has been totally diluted.

The director seems to have totally concentrated on Ravichandran and to some extent on Namitha. He has given the mother's character and the second heroine's character -- which are so vital to the story -- a raw deal. This has reduced the emotional impact of the film.

Another negative factor is that the comedy sequences -- lifted from many Tamil films of Vadivelu -- have been shot so shabbily that they do not evoke laughter, but make you feel angry. Some of the funny sequences shown in this film have already been lifted by other Kannada film directors. For example, the scene in which Sadhu Kokila promises to show god to the villagers was seen in the Dr Vishnuvardhan starrer Hrudayavantha. These 'remixes' of comedy sequences will only strengthen the feeling that Kannada directors lack originality.

The bottom line: But for the crude comedy sequences and badly choreographed fights, Neelakanta is a time-pass ride.

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R G Vijayasarathy