Rating: 7.5/10 (Simply Beautiful)
Cast: Varun Tej, Sai Pallavi, Saichand, Geetha Bhascker, Aryan Talla, Shankar Raja, Satyam Rajesh
Story-Screenplay-Dialogues-Direction: Shekar Kammula
Producer: Dil Raju
Banner: Sri Venkateswara Creations
After a long gap, I finally managed to watch Fidaa. The film was definitely worth the hype and deserved more than a 3.25 on most major review sites. Let's find out why this film is so likable in this week's review.
Plot: When he arrives in India to arrange his brother's marraige, Varun (Varun Tej) ends up falling in love with his sister-in law Bhanumathi (Sai Pallavi). Their personalities are the exact opposite of each other but they get attracted to one another. The rest of the story is whether or not Bhanu and Varun end up together.
Performances: Varun Tej is pretty good in his role as Varun and finally gets a role which he can relate to and suits his image. It's safe to say that despite his intimidating height and excellent screen presence, Varun is better suited for love stories than hardcore mass movies and he could be the next Mega family romance hero. His performance in the emotional scene with Bhanu in the 2nd half is praise worthy.
But this film no doubt belongs to Sai Pallavi. She wooed you in Premam and now she lights the screen on fire in Fidaa. She is simply sensational and an excellent performer. Bhanumathi will go down as one of the best female characters in Telugu cinema. Sai Pallavi not only mastered the Telangana accent and dialect in one film, but she also dubbed for herself and accomplished what most heroines can't do despite being in the industry for about 10 years. Her energy and innocent looks complement her performance and her natural beauty without makeup makes her even more adorable. She is the highlight of the movie through and through.
Saichand as Bhanu's father makes a comeback after a long gap and he is very good. Geetha Bhascker, mother of Pellichoopulu director Tharun Bhascker, is also excellent in her atha role and brings about some laughs.
Satyam Rajesh provides some good laughs in the 2nd half. Raja and Aryan Talla as the brothers are competent.
Direction: After two below par outings in Life is Bueatiful and Anamikaa, Shekar Kammula is back with a bang in Fidaa. For a director used to excellence throughout his career, Fidaa is a fine return to form from the ace director. Kammula's films have always been about simple emotions and beautiful moments in love and Fidaa has many of them throughout the movie. Fidaa has Kammula's mark all throughout the movie and despite not having a gripping plot at hand, his ability to execute these moments are what the film so likable. You will instantly fall in love with the environment and characters as the setup and feel is so fresh. He also extracts superb performances from his cast and delivers a universal entertainer for all sections of the audience to enjoy. Shekar Kammula'a magic will make you go Fidaa in this film.
Technicalities: Music and BGM by Shakthikanth Karthick is excellent. Vachinde, Ey Pillagaada, and Edo Jaruguthondi are very nice to watch on screen. Longtime Kammula collaborator Vijay C Kumar delivers another outstandiing visual feast in Fidaa. The camera work whether it be Banswada or Austin is awesome and a treat to watch on screen. Dialogues by Kammula are simple and sweet and entertaining all at the same time. Art by Rajeevi Nair is superb for the sets in Banswada. Editing by Marthand K. Venkatesh is adequate. The 2nd half lags a bit. Production Values by Dil Raju are grand and marvelous as usual.
+ Beautiful Moments
- Bit of lag in the 2nd half
Analysis and Verdict: Fidaa is just an awesome romantic entertainer from the word go. The film opens up with a simple entry by Varun Tej and showcases his life in Austin before he arranges his brothers marriage. After that we are introduced to Bhanumathi right away and we get to know her personality in a matter of seconds.
The first half is simply excellent and village atmosphere and characters provide a lot of freshness compared to the routine masala films. The first half moves at a lightning quick pace with tons of entertainment. The bonding between Varun and Bhanumathi is showcased beautifully.
After the interval, the film does slow down a bit and a good 30 minutes post the interval, the film feels dragged after Bhanu comes to america. But after the leads patch up and decide to be friends, the movie picks up again and leads to a meaningful and satisfying conclusion.
Sai Pallavi knocks this one out of the park and is without a doubt the highlight. She will make you go Fidaa.
Overall, Fidaa is simply a beautiful love story with beautiful moments and realistic emotions sprinkled throughout the narrative. Watch it for Sai Pallavi and Kammula's brilliant direction after a long gap.