Behind the Movie Shakti: Budget of Rs.45 crores with a brand name of Vyjayanthi, director Meher Ramesh touching the peculiar socio fantasy subject and Junior NTR’s enormous star power added with glamour spice from Ileana made ‘Shakti,’ the most awaited. Let us see, how far did it stand up to the title?
In the Movie Shakti: Movie begins in Egypt where Faktuni (Pooja Bedi) waiting for husband Mukthar (Sonu Sood) to return back devastating 18 Shakti Peetams and the secret Peetam in Hampi is shocked to see him dead. Faktuni wants to demolish Maha Shakti and destroy India pleasing the Egyptian mummies to come alive. To take revenge on Maha Shakti, lady villain Faktuni grooms both her sons Rakha and Bashir as warriors to attack India and Shakti Peetams at right time.
Fast forward 27 years, Home Minister Maha Deva Raya (Prabhu) meets Naga Sadhu (Nazar). Both are waiting for the day of Solar Eclipse to perform pooja for hidden Maha Shakti Peetam in Hampi, access to which is possible with Rudra Shulam and Jwala Mukhi. On the other side Rudra Shulam is possessed by International Criminal Jackie (Jockie Shroff) in Dubai while Jwala Mukhi is with Maha Deva Raya. At the same time evil Faktuni wants both of them to win the world. As Maha Deva Raya’s daughter Aishwarya (Ileana) is born by the blessings of Shakti, she alone has the power to open doors for Hampi Peetam. Aishwarya in order to enjoy her freedom runs away from home roaming in Jaipur, Sri Nagar and Haridwar. During this freak out journey with friends, Aishwarya meets guide Shakti (Junior NTR) who saves her from the attack of Faktuni’s followers and she falls in love with him.
As story progresses the grown up sons of Faktuni advance into India to kidnap Aishwarya. Then time for the big twist. Shakti rescues her to reveal his original identity as undercover cop Shakti Swaroop, IPS. Obviously they sing a duet and story moves on to get some life. It’s time for nearing Solar Eclipse and Maha Deva Raya, Naga Sadhu narrate a lengthy flash back recognizing the re-birth of protector Maha Rudra (Junior NTR) in the form of Shakti Swaroop.
In crisp, flashback is that Hampi Shakti Peetam is guarded by Maha Rudra and King Vijaya Krishna Raya (SP Balu). During an eclipse time performing the pooja for Maha Shakti in Hampi, Mukthar attacks them with help of a king’s follower Janaki Ram (Jockie Shroff). In the fight, everyone die and Janaki escapes to Dubai with Rudra Shulam who later on becomes Jackie while Maha Rudra’s wife Gowramma (Manjari Phadnis) dies giving birth to Shakti Swaroop. Coming to present again, Faktuni and Jockie enter India on an Eclipse day to accomplish their task. How did Shakti Swaroop encounter them and how did he save the 18 Shakti Peetams and Hampi Peetam forms climax.
Values of the Movie Shakti: Story spans over two generations. Unfortunately you might get a feel of listening to a story line belonging to ancient times of Egyptian mummies. But truth is that it spans between 1980 and 2011. What makes such a lengthy story look unappealing on the screen is known alone to director Meher Ramesh. Neither there was a tight script nor there an efficient utilisation of wonderful star cast. Meher absolutely failed in every department. Dialogues by Satyanand sounded funny. Work of Yandamuri and other seniors in expansion of story is absolutely hopeless. Music by Mani Sharma was better in background than songs. Art work by Anand Sai was marvellous. If cinematography of Sameer Reddy well captured the locales of Egypt, Dubai, Jaipur, Haridwar etc, editing by Marthand K Venkatesh was full of blunders. Production values of Vyjayanthi are top notch, as usual.
Performances wise Junior NTR alone shouldered the entire movie in spite of a fact that both the hero characters were not at all his cup of tea. Tarak looked handsome in undercover cop getup while Maha Rudra was shear disappointment for Fans even. Ileana is meant only for glamour. Pooja Bedi is poor and Jackie Shroff is wasted. Nazar was fine but the voice dubbed missed the feel. Prabhu, SP Balu, Manju Bhargavi, Sonu Sood, Manjari Phadnis, Sayaji Shinde, Vinod Kumar were also just okay. Comedy wise Brahmanandam episode was total amateurish while Ali, Krishna Bhagawan, Venu Madhav were fine.
Out of the Movie Shakti: Strictly speaking everything about this film is a big let down. It was only the presence of Junior NTR that can become saving grace else this would be a total disaster. Meher Ramesh shown his copy cat mentality in every department of story and narration but missed out the effectiveness in delivering the punch. There was no emotional connectivity. He should have concentrated a bit more on developing a sensible script with this kind of story. Other than going on a tour of Haridwar, Sri Nagar, Hampi and other locations, there is nothing great in Shakti. Junior NTR could have never accepted this kind of characterization. Length of the movie is more than 3 hours with a length of 15 reels tests the patience. Both first and second half, there is heavy lag. Surely Meher could have dealt this more better. There is no chance for movie to create new records at BO. Big sorry for Aswini Dutt and Meher gets a strong blow for missing the big target. Junior NTR should remain cautious while selecting his directors and stories.
Cinejosh Verdict of the Movie Shakti: A complete disappointment.
Reviewed by Srivaas