My Movie: Ee Nagaraniki Emaindi
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30 June 2018

The first feeling I had while watching Pelli Choopulu was how the director showcased a new Hyderabad. If we observe Mani Ratnam movies we can see how Chennai evolved over the years and how cool the urban people were portrayed. Gowtham Menon carried the legacy forward. We had our own share like Sekhar Kammula who used ‘Padma Rao Nagar and it’s surroundings’ to portray the upper middle class sensibilities in Anand, RGV who used the narrow ‘Old city streets’ in his initial films. Being a Hyderabadi, I was so happy to see Tharun explore Hyderabad especially the ‘Sri Nagar colony and it’s surroundings’ sensibilities. The world building he choose in Pelli Choopulu struck a chord with me especially the entrepreneur spirit, the new age of Hyderabadis who take a pride of belongingness to the city. Finally I saw a director who made it cool to be a Hyderabadi instead of writing cliche characters who either want to go to US ASAP or hate going to USA.

The initial moments of #ENE show us the brave side of Tharun who starts with a brilliant scene about a Club Manager explaining to common public the privilege required to enter a club. The production design of the set, the acting by Sushanth were top notch in that scene. The entire Sushanth episode as Club Manager works even better after watching the film and understanding his background, his ambitions. The problem I had was with the episodic writing. Tharun took his sweet time to show 4 different tracks 1 for every lead and took the entire first half to reach Goa. The screenplay technique he employed of using Anisha Ambrose character to make the ‘4 friends’ play ‘Truth or Dare’ to reveal their flashbacks was so convenient writing.

I had various thoughts running in my head on why the friends got busy in their own lives?, did Sushanth and Vishwak had a fight over a girl?, did Vishwak's girl friend die?. Probably I was waiting for a Zindagi Na Milege dobara moment where Hrithik confronts Farhan about cheating with his girl friend.

After taking off so well in their flashback about friends making a short film , approaching a girl and finally falling in love with the girl( including the Best track of the year ‘Aagi Aagi’ by Vivek Sagar) the film falls flat around the mid half of the film when you realize there was no big accident/breakup.

The conflict/low points were missing and the lead especially Vishwak didn't have one. If he had one it were his insecurities. If that was the conflict which the director wanted to show, then it was definitely not delivered to the audience. To top that Director made no efforts to make his lead Vishwak( which was semi autobiographical) a likable character. It just makes it so hard to invest in the friends journey when you don’t have the connect with the lead actors. I enjoyed Kaushik 2.0 but frankly he was a side dish. I was not enjoying the main course( Felt like the burger was not well made but the fries were damn good). It was like there was a separate movie running in the background with Abhinav and Venkatesh. They reminded me of Abhinay and Darshi from PC and they nailed it.

The Goa episode was neither wild nor thrilling. It was frankly lazy and appeared as if the leads were in a hangover mood (not the Hangover movie but the day after a drunk episode) where every one

was almost tried. Sushanth’s engagement episode moves the story forward and he realizes his true passion towards the end but Vishwak is too occupied with alcohol. Vishwak character is portrayed as border line aggressive/pyscho who has no compassion for his friends for most of the times and there is no proper arc for his character change. I expected a high when director tells us why Vishwak wears glasses all the time but that scene falls flat.

I had a problem with the time line of the film where ideally the movie should take place in 2011-2012 but there’s no much emphasis on that. The entire

Anisha Ambrose character and she playing a destiny card in making them come to Goa was so poorly written. Frankly I expected one of the friends to plant that character in the bar so that they all could go to Goa.

The movie might be a box office hit because of the comedy in the film but I don't see a difference between the regular commercial movies and this independent film. If we remove Kaushik character from the film , the box office chances become slim. I know it's not appropriate to bring collections in reviews but we need to address and highlight this fact.

As everyone is raving, Abhinav got the best lines and his chemistry with Venkatesh was out of the park. He had the best lines , delivered it with honesty and has bright future ahead

Cinematograhy was good, Goa was shot well but script was flat and didn’t give much chance for the cinematography to be elevated.

Music by Vivek Sagar is brilliant. Aagi Aagi was my personal favorite and the English song which comes in the background was catchy. His BGM was in tune with the tone of the film.

I had problems with the editing and the structure of the film especially taking a sweet first half to come to Goa especially in a buddy/road genre

Production design was great. Production values were good. Sync sound was authentic. Lead actors have done great job.

I watched Sainma short film after ages and while I didn’t like it in the first watching, I liked it when I watched it yesterday. Hopefully I will like #Ee Nagaraniki Emayindi in my second watching.

Santosh Eppalapally


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