Rarandoi Veduka Choodham movie review: Struggles to find rhythm but ends up a crowd pleaser

Hemanth Kumar

May,26 2017 17:03 59 IST

3/5

A young 14-year-old girl Bhramaramba is told by her grandmother that one fine day, when she grows up, a prince is going to come into her life and get married to her.

She grows up dreaming about this prince charming and being the most pampered child in the family, Bhramaramba turns into the cynosure of all eyes in her native village. When she turns 21, Bhramaramba (Rakul Preet) decides to step out of her village for the first time in her life to study further and this decision changes her life forever.

A still from Rarandoi Vedukha Choodham.

Rarandoi Veduka Choodham conjures a sense of deja vu in terms of how it sets up the story.

A big wedding brings two characters together; a young couple struggles to come to terms with their budding relationship; love and yearning for love - the set pieces are all there and it feels that director Kalyan Krishna and his team chose the most natural route to weave the story, with one major addition - Bhramaramba. She is the heart and soul of the story, and everything that happens in the film is because of her. Every other characters feels familiar, so to offer us ‘freshness’, we are given a ringside view of Bhramaramba’s life and her conversations with Shiva (Naga Chaitanya).

The film’s first half, in particular, is dedicated to building the relationship between the film’s lead characters; however, it is so verbose and dense that it turns out to be a big bore. It’s hard to make sense of what’s happening and with barely any twists and turns, we are left with no choice but to soak in whatever is thrown at us. It feels like one big sequence that’s rehashed multiple times with the two characters returning to the same location to sort things out.

The character of Bhramaramba itself turns quite monotonous after a point. Yes, she’s stubborn most of the times and comes across as naive sometimes, but that’s about it. It's until an hour into the story that we truly become aware of what's happening in her mind.

And just when we get into a zone wondering what’s the whole point of the film, Kalyan Krishna turns the film towards a familiar turf of two families reconciling their differences to unite a young couple. Call it an obsession with wanting to rekindle the warmth of a joint family or focusing on the highs and lows of a budding relationship, Rarandoi Veduka Choodham strikes all the right chords of a family drama in its second half.

The emotional graph of all the characters turns much better in the second half and the story feels more gratifying as it unfolds. One of the best written scenes in the film has Shiva (Naga Chaitanya) having an emotional breakdown and also confessing his love for Bhramaramba at the same time, and Naga Chaitanya nails it pretty well. How I wish the rest of the film, at least occasionally, had a spark like this!

Truth is, it’s hard not to like a film like Rarandoi Veduka Choodham, which doesn’t aim too high.

It knows what its limitations are and tries to play to the galleries within its genre. Much of the film’s weight is put on the film’s lead actors - Naga Chaitanya and Rakul Preet, and both the actors have, quite clearly, put their best foot forward. In this film, Naga Chaitanya isn’t the brooding youngster, who lets his silence do most of the talking.

His body language is different and the actor does a pretty job as Shiva. On the other hand, Rakul Preet plays an author-backed role, which requires her to get into the skin of a small-town girl, who’s pampered, stubborn and naive at the same time. Rakul does a fine job, but somewhere you can’t help but wonder if she really needed so many lines, especially in the film’s first half.

As much as it struggles to find its rhythm in the first half, Rarandoi Veduka Choodham ends up being a crowd-pleasing film in the end. The trick lies in making you yearn for the feeling of being together, despite all odds. It’s the theme of most family dramas in Telugu films and Rarandoi Veduka Choodham is no different.

Published Date: May 26, 2017 17:03 PM | Updated Date: Sep 26, 2017 15:13 PM