Cheliyaa

Love stories are never simple. Being such a common emotion, the implications of it on human brains is incomprehensibly complex. Well, this love story made me think that love can happen anywhere and any time. The happy endings might be rare in love stories but whenever they are earned it satisfies you to the core. Yet times, the start and end could be great but the middle progression needs to be as interesting as well. Don’t you get bored with the details that make no sense?

Plot : Indian Air Force fighter pilot, Varun (Karthi) is charismatic, flamboyant, highly risk taking and on your face kind of a person. He dumps his old girl friend (Shradda Srinath) after an ‘accidental’ meeting with doctor Leela Abraham (Aditi Rao Hydari). The beautiful, innocent young doctor is in awe of the man as she heard about him through her officer brother. The law of attraction bring them so close that even though they are quite opposite personalities they can’t move away from each other. As their problems seem to instancify fate plays a role in bringing them closer after Varun realises of purity of Leela’s love. Well, what did he realise and how? Watch it on screen.

Performances : Karthi makes Varun believable with his histrionics. He looks a bit odd here and there but he made it up with his brilliant performance. Never did he try to overdo in any scene and we can say that he turned a new leaf in this movie with his nuanced portrayal. Its like watching new Karthi on screen after decade. Aditi Rao Hydari makes a confident debut in the movie and she looked really beautiful in many sequences. Especially, in songs she looks like an angel. The senior actors like Vipin Sharma, Delhi Ganesh makes their presence felt in few scenes they were given. RJ Balaji did provide few laughs here and there.

Technicalities : Cheliyaa basks in the glory of cinematographer Ravi Verman. His eye for aesthetics and details in the shot composition and framing makes you wonder how many beautiful frames had we been missing with this man doing fewer films. His frames talk about the emotions the characters are going through. He tries to fill the backgrounds and foregrounds with the crazy concepts that make sense with the story. Sreekar Prasad once again proves that he understands the story and feel a narrator wants to convey and makes it worthwhile to watch the movie. It is not his fault that the writing slugs after a point of time. Kiran the dialogue writer just made an effort to translate the Tamil dialogues without trying to be innovative in Telugu.

Sound design by T.R. Krishna Chetan is the backbone for the movie. It is the sound quality that stands out from other films. A.R. Rehman scores brilliantly for the movie and his back ground score syncs perfectly with the feel the narrative wants to convey. Mani Ratnam has a narrator does a good job in using visual storytelling as tool but fails on the writing front. Mostly, his writing looks like he is falling back on his past laurels. This work from the master seems to be highly nostalgic rather than being fresh.

Analysis : The movie after a great start falls flat nosediving into the ambitious world of Mani Ratnam’s dream. He fails to understand that his USP is emotional core and not the visual brilliance. His emphasis on visual storytelling hurts the movie more than anything. You wish this movie to have been made by in form Mani Ratnam who could’ve made it another Sakhi or Roja. Watch it for the aesthetics and cinematography brilliance.

Rating : 2.5/5

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