Cast: Suriya, Vivek Oberoi, Priyamani, Radhika Apte, Sudeep, Subhalekha Sudhakar and others
Producers: Madhu Vantena, Sheetal Talwar and others
Story, screenplay, direction: Ramgopal Varma
After strong criticism that it was nothing but brutality ripped out, Raktha Charitra – 1 won accolades from the masses, and it turned out to be a cool hit. Now, its sequel – Raktha Charitra-2, with not much public outrage against it, unfolds the blood and gore. Yet, the entertainment comes in a convincing way, with a message overpowering it that behind the manslaughter and vengeful murders, there is bound to be a shocking story of bitter enmity between the two families, set in the backdrop of the dreaded faction cult of Rayalaseema.
The uniqueness of Ramgopal Varma is that he had brought to play a documentary-type entertainment in a commercial format, certainly a bold attempt which only an RGV could dare. RC-1 dealt with the raise of Pratap Ravi (replica of Paritala Ravi, the slain Penugonda strongman in Anantapur district) as a demigod of the underdog. Paritala Ravi). The part-2 is altogether brings a new thread, though it has an unbreakable link with its prequel. Anyways, a mention to second part without dwelling into part one would confuse the readers. The major challenge before RGV is to make the sequel more gripping than its prequel.
Tamil hero Suriya (the replica of Maddelacheruvu Suri, the arch rival of Paritala Ravi in real life) enacts the role of Surya, the vengeance personified. He is desperate to settle scores with Pratap Ravi. Failing in one of the attempts on his rival, Surya surrenders before the court and gets jailed. From the jail, he enacts the cold-blooded murder of Pratap Ravi. More than characters, emotions speak a lot here.
There are many questions to be answered here. Who is this Surya actually? Why does he want to liquidate his rival’s life? In what way, both the families are involved in the bloodbath against each other? Truly, RGV has injected the element of human pathos in its strong sense, rather than merely treating the subject from the point of view of entertainment. This sequel is dominated more by the conspiracy theories which prevailed in real life circumstances between the two families. RGV showed a lot of concern for both the families and his urge to make the public know the facts as to what had really transpired between the two parties.
Performances are consistently of a towering quality. Vivek Oberoi finished his role with extraordinary perfection, delivering an equally powerful presence in the sequel. But, definitely, the cynosure is the Southern guy Surya here. He turned into a powerhouse of aggressive and forceful performances, which the Indian cinema in the recent years has ever to feel it. Shatrughan Sinha (the screen NTR) is relegated to a jiffy. Sudeep, with a silent package in RC-1 steals the show in the sequel. Priyamani (as Bhawani, Surya's wife) performed neatly, but rather deglamorised in tune with the demand for reality on the screen. Radhika Apte (playing Pratap Ravi’s wife) makes the audience glue to their seats when she turns the confrontationist. Subhalekha Sudhakar is a surprise, playing one of the vital roles. All others did deliver the best from their side.
The story is more or less based on the real life incidents between Paritala Ravi and Maddelacheruvu Suri families. As expected, RGV did not miss the infamous Jubilee Hills bomb blast episode, but the climax – the murder of Pratap Ravi - would rather be unconvincing to the hardcore watchers of the Rayalaseema facton cult. The narration is slow, but the screenplay is gripping and in some scenes, it leaves the audience spellbound. The background score is the lifeline of the film, with the climax song – Kathulatho Sahavasam – reverberating in the ears of the audience as they leave the theatres. Cinematography is impressive. The action sequences look real, but blood and gore as the gross output. Being the sage of vengeance with violence, dialogues are laced with the required punches. Editing is serious.