Director: A. Harsha
Music Director: Ravi Basru
Cast: Puneeth Rajkumar, Rashmika Mandanna, Ramya Krishnan, Mukesh Tiwari, Ravishankar, Chikkanna, Sadhu Kokila, Vijaykashi
Anjaniputra Movie Review
Anjaniputra, deeply formulaic hero-worshipping drama, is a remake of a Tamil Movie Poojai. The film revolves around the story of an obedient son, Veeraj (Puneeth Rajkumar), being thrown out of the house by his mother Anjana (Ramya Krishnan), due to some misunderstanding in his family.
Anjana Devi loves Veeraj unconditionally. But due to some misunderstanding, Anjana finds him guilty even without asking an explanation she sends him out of the home, and the son obediently accepts his mother’s decision without even batting an eyebrow.
The protagonist is a moneylender in a market. When the girl he loves spites his lowly life, it is time to reveal his royal background. It is only a minor misunderstanding that has kept him away from his mother and an extended family. Then soon it is time for the reunion and to take on the villain. From there, is it one chase, fight, song, sentimental scene, comedy after the other in quick succession.
Director A Harsha has remained very loyal to the Tamil film Poojai that Anjaniputra is based on. Hero worshipping scene followed by a punch dialogue and a fight, then a song, then comedy, the hero meets the heroine, again a song, then the love story beings, again a song. Overall it is a perfect masala movie. To Harsha’s credit, he makes this film feel like a fast-paced thriller while in reality, it is a commercial potboiler.
In this film, Ramya Krishnan seems like she is still reeling from the hangover of her Sivagami role. Even a bit of background score by composer Ravi Basrur looks inspired by Baahubali 2. Ravi’s contribution is significant in keeping the audience from drifting away to someplace else mentally. His adrenaline-pumping title track and the background score makes the predictable narration a bit tolerable. Rashmika Mandanna’s Geetha also suffers the same fate of all heroines of Hari’s films. She is a hero’s arm candy. Actor Sadhu Kokila and Chikkanna manage to draw some laughs at times. But, their characters can’t speak without double entendres.
In an effort to speed up the film, some of the characters get a short notice, including that of Akhilendra Mishra. Chikkanna has become the comedian-in-chief of Sandalwood. Despite the presence of Sadhu Kokila, it is he who gets the best lines and best comedy scenes. This film clearly marks him as the biggest comedian of the industry now. He also gets to play the flatterer-in-chief. Ravishankar is also reduced to that role. It would only be academic to say that Puneeth carries the film on his shoulders and does his part of acting, fighting and dancing like only he is expected to do.
The director has seemingly tried his best to salvage the film from melodrama and tiresome narration that came with the original script. Neither Harsha’s experience in delivering engaging commercial films or Puneeth’s onscreen presence could save Anjaniputra from its own basic sins.
The presence of only one villain is one of the weaknesses in the plot. But there are enough scenes that demand a whistle from the fans and these are peppered throughout the script.
There is an overdose of action. The romance is normal, the drama is simple, sentiments are mild, songs usable and comedy tickling if not hilarious. Overall they combine well. Anjaniputra is Dodmane Hudga and Rajakumara in parts. It has everything that made those two films big hits. Harsha has hit the bull’s eye and Anjaniputra has all the hallmarks of becoming his biggest box office register.