I’m not a part of that group of cine goers that waited for two years to find out why Kattapa killed Bahubali. Last Thursday my dad said something that prompted me to hop onto the Bahubali bandwagon. He said, “Let’s watch Bahubali: The Beginning, it was being played on TV and I recorded it for you.” After shoving away initial hesitation, I agreed and sat in front of the TV. I was tired of staying in the dark, oblivious to Bahubali memes and references that bombarded my Facebook timeline and I had fake-laughed my way into WhatsApp conversations enough. Just five minutes into the film and I turned my phone face down. SS Rajamouli’s vision and hardwork translated on the screen for the next two hours.
To give you a basic premise of the film, Bahubali is the Mahabarat-esque story of brothers Amarendra Bahubali (Prabhas) and Bhallaldeva (Rana Daggubatti), their battle to the throne, accompanied by family politics, misjudgments, tension, romance and deceit.
I was slightly hesitant to share my thoughts about the movie, because that’d mean I would be going against the million others who fell in love with both the parts. Grandeur and magnificence aside, Bahubhali: The Beginning and The Conclusion did not strike a chord with me. What I absolutely loved about the first part was how visually appealing and larger than life it was. Despite all of this, somehow I couldn’t wrap my head around the hysteria the movie created. Great visuals. Check. Great cinematography and CGI. Check. Great Action. Check. Great acting. Um.
Over the top or excruciatingly long, it was hard to tell. Throughout the first part, I asked myself, “Is this even worth the hype?” The climax, the king of cliffhangers gave me my answer. Hell yes, it was! Finally, the #WKKB trending hashtag begin to make sense (just incase you’re wondering what it stands for: “Why Kattapa Killed Bahubhali”. Released in four languages (Telegu, Tamil, Malayalam and Hindi) to cater to all, and with 9000 screens, Bahubhali is an ambitious project that deserves all the moolah, given the money and efforts invested.
Check out how my thought process changed from “What’s going on” to “What kind of a story is this” and finally to “WHAT AN EPIC END!”, through this WhatsApp conversation with my friend during the movie. Please don’t judge me, I’m a slow learner.
And then in no time I knew that I couldn’t wait to find out why Kattapa (Sathyaraj) killed Bahubhali. Thankfully, my wait was only over a few days but it easily felt longer. The prequel raised my excitement to infinity. I haven’t watched any trailer as many times as Bahubali: The Conclusion. The background score, the visuals, it was all so compelling and had ‘EPIC’ written all over it. The first part gave us a very fierce Avanthika (Tammmmaaaannaaah Bhatia) and the second part gave us a fiercer and principled, yet so lovable Devasena (Anushka Shetty) and of course, the powerful Sivagami (Ramya Krishnan) who we saw in both the parts.
When I was watching the first part on TV, during the ‘Extra Shots’ section, a quirky Karan Johar (because, Dharma Productions) said that even if viewers are on the lookout for the magical waterfall in the first part, they may be left disappointed because they won’t find anything. SS Rajamouli extended his vivid and picturesque vision onto celluloid and that is pretty much the only place where you can find nature at its best.
As much as I respect the efforts, sleepless nights and attention to detail that must’ve gone into the second part, it didn’t work with me. The subtlety in romance in the film was brilliant in parts. I wish romance was depicted more through moments where Amarendra Bahubhali stood by his wife, instead of songs and the initial parts where Bahubhali acted foolish and sheepish to woo Devasena (don’t ask me how that works).
I cannot stress enough on how brilliantly and craftily the action scenes were visualised. A review I read compared the action scenes to Tom and Jerry’s witty antics, and I couldn’t agree more. A branch creatively transformed into a bow, infact even a person was used as a bow and shield!
After the movie reached that point where the burning question was answered, it didn’t feel as important anymore. Suddenly, I didn’t care about why Kattapa killed Bahubhali. Suddenly, all that mattered was getting out of that seat that I was seated in for the last three hours, lest I’d see Bahubhali and Devasena in everyone because of the overdose. Never did I imagine I’d heave a sigh of relieve when the credits rolled. The ticket said 2 hours 45 minutes but I swear it lasted for 3 (or maybe it just felt that long)! 😛 And as Arvind Kejriwal would say: