Review 'Vyooham': RGV-style political drama

'Vyooham', produced by Ramadootha Creations, hit the screens today after months of delays and a legal battle opened up by Nara Lokesh. The pro-Jagan movie comes weeks after the release of 'Yatra 2', another film with a storyline resembling the latest box-office release. Let's find out the film's hits and misses in this detailed review:


Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Veera Sekhar Reddy breathed his last in 2009 in a helicopter crash. His son Madhan (Ajmal Amir) receives the support of more than 150 MLAs in the aftermath. The Bharath Party's High Command (led by a foreign-born woman leader) imposes its fiat and installs Kosaiah as the puppet CM. Madhan, much as he is stunned, remains silent.

An incident makes him take up the Odarpu Yatra (one of the few things in the movie whose name hasn't been changed). The Yatra transforms the AP politics, sending shock waves to the rival camp led by Indra Babu (Chandrababu, who else?). Faced with the prospect of a defeat in the 2014 Assembly elections in divided AP, Indra Babu welcomes the support of a popular film actor named Sravan Reddy (a Pawan Kalyan lookalike).


Purely as a comparison, 'Vyooham' has inferior performances compared to 'Yatra 2'. Jiiva was terrific in that film as Jagan, while Ajmal Amir is just average. Since the conversations are overlong in many scenes, the inadequacy of his performance shows.

The artists who played Chandrababu Naidu and Pawan Kalyan do parody more than anything. This was not the case with RGV's 'Lakshmi's NTR', where the artists looked serious. Amjal Amir and Manasa Radhakrishnan (played Madhan's wife), Vasu Inturi (as Madhan's trusted lieutenant) and others on the good side are the only ones who are not reduced to mimicry. The Sonia Gandhi lookalike comes undone by poor prosthetics.


At the outset, RGV says that the film is entirely fictional. The disclaimer, which goes on for more than two minutes, won't be taken at face value by anybody - be it YCP supporters or TDP fans or the Sainiks. The initial scene is a punch; we see Madhan, who is already the CM, asking the AP CID to arrest Indra Babu.

The demise of Veers Sekhar Reddy follows the title card. The film takes some time to distinguish itself from 'Yatra 2', which too narrated similar incidents with an open pro-Jagan bias.

The conversations between different characters are detailed and too lengthy. Yet, the first scene involving a Chiranjeevi lookalike and a Pawan Kalyan-lookalike is enjoyable because of its unfiltered nature. The reason provided by Chiru for merging his party (Praja Rajyam Party hasn't been named) with the Bharath Party (read Congress) is believable. The portrayals are non-sanitized in the film.

The depiction of the politics surrounding the AP special status should have been way better. The Deeksha route chosen by Madhan could have been shown with more force and depth. There is melodrama through the background score and the four full-fledged songs, but the dialogues fall short of the intent. The scene wherein Madhan's wife says that people can't be faulted for not voting in YCP in 2014 is handled with maturity. It goes to show that RGV didn't want his female characters to be mum.

In a scene, Madhan shares his observation that people don't worry about caste identities. Insofar as YCP has been trying its best to broaden its social base, this line makes sense. In another scene, Madhan explains what made him believe that welfarism must take precedence over development.

RGV is lucky that this film has come out at a time when it is clear to anybody who follows politics that Chandrababu Naidu has gamed Pawan Kalyan so much that the latter has literally surrendered Jana Sena's interests to the TDP.

Vox Verdict:

'Vyooham' is artistically and aesthetically inferior to 'Yatra 2'. Those of you who want to know how it looks if RGV makes his tweets into a film, watch this one.


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