Behind the Movie Jagadguru Adi Shankara: Highly Intellectual and Philosophical JK Bharavi’s excellence in handling the devotional scripts was evidential with ‘Annamayya’ and ‘Sri Ramadasu.’ Now, he turned a director with this unique flick targetes with the tag of ‘For Youth.’ Let us see, how good are we to understand JK Bharavi?
In the Movie Jagadguru Adi Shankara: The birth of Shankara was shown again in a conventional format with ‘Brahma Tejassu’ on the face of infant and parents (Anand, Rohini) sight the blessings of many gods treating their son as incarnation of Shiva. But, the life span of Sankara is assigned as only 8 years. Shankara grows as a loyal student trained in Vedas but upset and severely disturbed with disordered growing number of sects in Hinduism and each having cruel quarrels and blood shed with other. After the death of father, Shankara expresses his aim of becoming a Bala Sanyasa. His efforts are helped by Agni Deva (Tanikella) and Rudraksha Muni (Mohan Babu). In fact, Rudraksha Muni transfers 16 years of life period to Shankara to see him grow as a Saint in unifying the Hinduism.
Once Shankara begins journey of understanding the Universe, he comes across good (Chandaludu by Nagarjuna, Veda Vyas) and bad (Kapala Marthanda Raju by Suman). Traveling from Kashmir to Kanya Kumari four times on foot, Shankara defeat many scholars in discourses and debates with his doctrine of Advaitham. Famous among these debates is with Mandana and his wife Udaya Bharathi (Sai Kumar and Kamilini Mukherjee). Being a Sanyasi, here Shankara was forced by Udaya Bharathi to understand the life of a householder. To accomplish this, Sankara uses ‘Parakaya Pravesham’ technique to get into the dead body of an irresponsible King (Indian Idol Sree Ramachandra). With the help of Queen (Kamna Jethmalani), the soul of Shanakra learns about Sex, Love Making thus to defeat Mandana, Udaya Bharathi.
From here on, Shankara becomes Adi Shankara establishing Peethas (Monasteries) of Advaitha Siddhantha across the country penning plenty of literary works. He is the one who performed many rituals and installed the sacred Sri Chakra Yantra in Tirupathi to lock Sri Lakshmi Devi blessings which is the result why this pilgrim center is flourishing with lots of wealth. Towards the end of life, Shankara ascends the throne of most prestigious Kashmeera Peetham to be awarded as Jagadguru and ends his life journeying to Himalayas getting freedom from embodiment.
Values & Out of the Movie Jagadguru Adi Shankara: One needs to really have enough guts on introducing Adi Shankara to Telugu audience because this powerful saint was never so popular in this part of country. Though Shankara’s preaching on Advaitha Siddhantham are studied as a part of academics, movie business works on commercial lines and JK Bharavi should be appreciated for brining this product on par with that of ‘Annamayya’ or ‘Sri Ramadasu.’
Picking the major milestones in Adi Shankara’s life and presenting them with authenticity was the challenge for JK Bharavi. He has done with tremendous conviction with lot of support from a stellar star cast of Kaushik Babu, lived into the character followed by appearances of Suman, Sreehari, Nagarjuna, Sai Kumar, Kamalini, Kamna, Sree Rama Chandra, Tanikella, Mohan Babu, Naga Babu, Rohini, Meena, Roja, Chiranjeevi etc.
Cinematography of PKH Das was not highly efficient marred by poor graphics work. Goutham Raju’s editing runs on commercial lines with crispness added to each of the episodes. Nag Srivatsa’s music is outstanding both in main, background. Coming to Udaya Bhaskar’s directional supervision, he seems to have helped JK Bharavi in establishing the core substance of Adi Shankara in finest form. Dialogues were highly powerful catering class, mass, uneducated, educated and all the other sections of audience. JK Bharavi’s strong hold on literature was endorsed in many situations.
As a director, JK Bharavi was on par with Raghavendra Rao when dealing the scenes of discourse between Sai Kumar, Kamalini Vs Kaushik Babu. Then the erotic scenes of Sree Rama Chandra with Kamna Jethlamani are fairly well handled. Climax portion needs to be highlighted for spreading the actual powerful message to entire youth of world for explaining the greatness of Hinduism which is spearheaded by the phrase of ‘Love All.’ Apparently, cinematic freedom was taken by Bharavi yet the target is accomplished.
If at all a good budget and a still more experienced directional skills was offered to support JK Bharavi, this movie would have become one more addition into the precious treasure of Tollywood like ‘Annamayya’ or ‘Sri Ramadasu.’ While the commercial run of these kinds of concepts is always doubtful, for a section of really traditional audience who loves to see the mix of poetry, bio-graphical and legendary materials of history, Adi Shanakra is worth a watch. For a man who achieved so much in the just life span of 32 years, there is lot to inspire for current day youth. It is our duty to promote good films and let us do so. Well done Bharavi, you have joined history to match with contemporariness.
Cinejosh Verdict of the Movie Jagadguru Adi Shankara: JK Bharavi Delivers a Powerful Film with Less Devotion and More Substance.
Cinejosh Srivaas Rating: 3
Reviewed by Srivaas