Raghuvaran B. Tech was an astounding success in Telugu and lead to the the dubbing of many of Dhanush’s older films. Nava Manmadhudu was touted as another romantic entertainer from the makers of Raghuvaran B. Tech and, though it doesn’t compare in terms of wholesome entertainment, it still makes a mark.
Katha, Screenplay, Darsakathvam
I don’t believe in spoiling the plot of a film before watching it. If you haven’t seen the movie yet and would like to know the plot, you can read more about it here.
Velraj masterfully directed Raghuvaran B. Tech, a film where the clever dialogues, relatable characters and engaging emotions fell in place perfectly. He tried to duplicate the success with Nava Manmadhudu, but this time the pieces don’t fit as well together. While Nava Manmadhudu still has many of the same qualities as the Raghuvaran does, the film as a whole is just not as effective. There’s still the natural romance, relatable characters and clever dialogue, but the emotions aren’t delivered in the same engaging manner. For example, while Raghuvaran builds up the back and forth between the protagonist and antagonist for a satisfying climax, Nava Manmadhudu seems to fall apart as the conflict drag after the suspense is revealed.
Nonetheless, Nava Manmadhudu does have its strengths. In particular, I liked the way the romances were played out in a realistic way between the lead cast. Having two separate romantic tracks with the same cast is a tricky thing to direct, but it worked out really well here. The characters are not glamorous, but down-to-earth and with their own share of flaws. The protagonist’s attachment to his family, especially his father, drives the core suspense of the film and it works well while it lasts.
Dhanush deals another flawless performance in this film and manages to show the transformation of Bharath from a idealistic youngster to a troubled family man with ease.
Samantha’s performance in this film was fun to watch, especially after seeing her in glamour roles in most of her other films. She has more scope for emotion in this film and manages to put away her star image for a very realistic and romantic relationship between Yamuna and Bharath (Dhanush).
Amy Jackson also puts in a solid performance as Hema, and the director helps fit her into the film by making her character half-Indian. Her romance with Bharath is also executed well and it was fun to watch a realistic romantic conflict as the characters’ lack of emotional maturity plays into their separation. It was also interesting to see how Hema’s relationship with Bharath’s cousin plays out; I’m glad her outgoing attitude wasn’t sidelined, but rather capitalized on for one of the main conflicts in the film.
K.S. Ravikumar and Raadha Sarathkumar play Bharath’s parents effectively. Adith Arun plays Bharath’s cousin and is adequate, though his character loses power very quickly in the ending. Satish is adequate as Bharath’s sidekick and delivers some entertaining comedy. Jayaprakash has a negative role that is also fitting.
Anirudh delivers another youthful album. Emannavo clearly stands out with its romantic lyrics and pleasant tune, but the other singles are just as catchy and blend well with the visuals in the film.
Since the story and characters are very relatable, A. Kumaran made sure that the visuals are also suitable. While the locations don’t offer much eye candy, they definitely don’t detract from the film and the songs help build the relationships between the characters.
If you watch the film acknowledging its slow pacing and anticlimactic ending, Nava Manmadhudu will still manage to entertain you with catchy music, family emotions, fun dialogues, and most importantly, relatable relationships between realistically flawed characters.
Kids will most likely not enjoy this film as it doesn’t have much eye-candy or action. It is geared towards a more mature audience who can relate to romantic relationships and the struggles of family life.
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