Director Bapu is in his element as he delivers another classic in Sri Rama Rajyam – a remake of 1960s Telugu hit Lava Kusha
Bapu has often been described as a top directors who specialises in making films that represented nativity, culture and richness of folk elements peculiar to the Telugu language. He continues that trend in his latest film, Sri Rama Rajyam. Written by Ramana, the film is a refreshing change from the violence-filled commercial films doing the rounds nowadays. Senior NTR, who dominated the Telugu film industry for more than four decades, had acted in the 1963-film Lava Kusha, directed by CS Rao and Pulliah. Now life has come full circle for him, with his son Nandamuri Balakrishna starring in the remake of the film. And his performance in Sri Rama Rajyam is one that the veteran actor can be proud of. Sri Rama Rajyam is a classic and so it’s a challenge to remake it. Director Bapu has succeeded in the challenge and has, in the process, made another classic. The set design creates an authentic mood, ably helped by Illayaraja’s compositions. But Bapu’s masterstroke is in the casting – Akkineni Nageshwara Rao as Valmiki, Nayanthara as Sita and Balakrishna as Rama were the perfect choices. Balakrishna effectively portrays Rama, which seemed a difficult task considering his legendary father’s portrayal of Rama has penetrated deep into the Telugu audience psyche. Nayanthara’s performance is so good that you are glad she chose this film to be her last. The two child artistes have also performed very well. Technically too the film is strong. Sri Rama Rajyam stands taller among mythological classics and may well set standards like other Telugu classics like Annamayya, Krishnarjuna Yuddham and Ramadasu have done in the past. Filmgoers, who look for classics, should not miss this film.