I never liked Sukumar or his films. Every movie of his is overdone madness… except for Arya ( I hardly remember anything about Jagadam) . I am not a Mahesh Babu fan but I absolutely loved his last 3 films and he totally gained my respect with Seethamma Vakitlo Sirimalle Chettu for obvious reasons. When I heard the news that these two guys are coming together, I got really excited for unknown reasons ! From the release of first wallpaper to the last theatrical trailer, 1 Nenokkadine always had my attention. Days towards the release that attention turned into obsession. I was just dying to watch it.
Finally the day had come Jan 10, 2014. Day started with discouraging tweets. It was sad but I never lost hope. Little later it was my show time. Theater was full. I was totally pumped up. And the movie began with a terrific opening scene with Goutham running away from villains. It was fantastically shot. Then came the first song, which was decent and it was followed a brilliant chase sequence. Till here, everything was bang on. Next came a scene that reveals the whole chase that happened previously was hero’s hallucination. There, Right there, At that moment, I was scared like shit. Just after 20 mins. Sukumar introduced me to his craziness. Then, in a bit, movie moved to goa. There, craziness met unwanted complication and gave us a total mess. I was annoyed to death. Just when I was loosing hope, thinking it was all over, Movie had an amazing pre-interval scene and from there, there was no stopping.
Interval episode is easily one of the greats scenes ever written in Telugu cinema. The way it was shot, Mahesh Babu’s Performance, Sukumar’s taking and DSP’s music, everyone just touched their career peaks there. Crowd were not on their seats, whistles, claps, the whole theater went bonkers. And Me, I was just blown away. What followed in 2nd half was pure genius.
2nd half start with dialogue “naa jeevitham lo inka abbhadhalu vundavu Sameera… anni nijale”… from there the way story unveils itself is something extraordinary. Movie has so many layers in it. Playing with the clues, Parents, His father’s dreams, finding murders, reasons behind murder, who to believe, what is the truth, what is not etc. There are some terrific scenes like where Mahesh solves Rubik’s Cube and simultaneously a previously happened scene goes backwards to reveal the Bank’s symbol. one more where a big twist comes out with Nassar and Pradeep Rawat switching places. And that excellently written conversation between Mahesh and Nassar at pre-climax. These are just three of many. Somewhere in between second half I totally got connected to Goutham (Mahesh babu) and I was wanting to see their parents as much as him !! I’m not commenting anything on climax. Go watch it on big screen. All i can say is, I literally got goosebumps while I was watching it again yesterday for the second time.
Apart from these, there are also some tiny Sukumar-ish moments which made this film extra smart. Like the one bit that comes after first song where Kelly escapes in a car which mahesh sees on a hoarding right before it. Very Deep no ? I shall give you some more, The one in Goa where Mahesh confirms about Heroin’s presence with a random old couple and then double confirms about these old couple with a random guy who is little away from them., When Mahesh Babu says “Sound raakoodadhe…” after killing Kelly and Showing Mahesh and Goutham on same frame running behind each other at climax. God level stuff this.
Coming to cast and crew. Sukumar’s Best work along with Arya. And i’m so glad that he used non-linear screenplay. Every single bit that runs on screen is linked to the story. Sukumar respects your intelligence, asks you to involve, asks you to feel for the lead character and have some some patience. But no spoonfeeding whatsoever . Rathnavelu’s camera work was top notch. Mindblowing frames and lightings. Kriti Sanon was a sweet surprise. Now, Music. Devi Sri Prasad. What he did to this movie with his BGM is fucking epic on so many levels. Its haunts you for days. One of the best Ever. I wish makes release it as a separate track. Goutham got a glorious debut. His character comes and goes every now and then. He is just there all along the movie. Last but not least, Mahesh Babu. This is undoubtedly Mahesh’s Best performance till date for me, wearing his role like second skins . His act in interval and climax episodes is legendary stuff.
Only thing that went terribly wrong with this film was its Budget. You really really can’t afford to take risk with 70+ Crs. Have to say that producers had some balls. But they should have made it in controlled budget and just for limited targeted audience. If movie reaches beyond that, it’s an advantage. Most of the songs and Goa episode were irritating and majorly effecting the flow of the film. Movie was also bit too long for its genre.
Who ever were familiar with my pre-release excitement about “1” might think i am biased. But no, I’m not. What I expected from this movie before release and what got from it after watching is entirely different. But I loved this film for what it wanted to be. So, Go give 1 – Nenokkadine a shot. It is one the most ambitious, honest, original and sincere effort in recent telugu cinema. Hope you will enjoy it. Even if you don’t like it, It’s completely ok, because What “1” and Telugu film Industry now more needs is encouragement and confidence than love.
And If you Chose not to care… then as my friend on twitter said… “migitha janam Maa TV lo vaaram vaaram choosukuni mellaga istapadathaaru..ika chesedi em ledu…”