I am fairly critical of Bollywood movies and only see one in a theater if the movie gets really good reviews or if I think it is going to be an interesting watch. But I can watch any Tollywood movie in theater. The reasons are many, Telugu is my mother tongue, most movies are formulaic rom-coms, an innocence still exists in these movies and unlike Hindi movie stars, most Telugu stars don’t demand the script to be tweaked to their requirement and let the script take the priority over their image and screen time.
The recent addition to this is Geetha Govindam. For me, a number of things worked in Geetha Govindam entering my favourite list. It’s an innocent rom-com, has clean and crisp storytelling, the lead actors fit the role to the T (it helped this was the first movie I saw of both the male and female leads), has nice situational comedy, has very good and meaningful songs and lastly the production values are good. Vijay Deverakonda delivered such an innocent, natural performance in this one that I immediately wanted to watch Arjun Reddy, a movie that kept popping as recommended watch on Amazon prime and which I was ignoring. And boy, this guy can act! With the hero doing all the heavy lifting, the heroine, Rashmika Mandanna seems to be a prop at first – appearing pretty, making angry faces and with few dialogues – but by the end she nicely complements the innocent hero as an arrogant, exploitative (at first) girl. May be it’s the director and the edits to only show her expressions. But, credit is due, to her as well, her eyes are very expressive and her face tells a lot about her state of being in a particular situation. One can only imagine how much better she could have been if it was her native language. Credits also due, to the person who dubbing for her as well. The reason I say is because there are lip sync and dialogue over ride issue at a number of places.
A recommended watch from my end and if you like it, follow it up with a watch of Arjun Reddy on Amazon prime to understand the brilliance of the lead actor. And if you are still interested, nice back stories about the movies here – Geetha Govindam – Director Parasuram Interview, Arjun Reddy – Director Sandeep Reddy Interview, Arjun Reddy – Director Sandeep Reddy Interview – 2, Arjun Reddy Hero Vijay Deverakonda Interview.