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Anukoni Prayanam

Anukoni Prayanam Movie Review

by rameshe

Critic’s Rating : / 5

Anukoni Prayanam Movie Review : This well-intentioned dramedy is a lengthy commentary on life

Story: Two Telugu-speaking friends with opposing views towards life work at a construction site in Bhubaneswar, Odisha. When one of them dies of a heart attack, the other takes it upon himself to take the body to his friend’s village for last rites. What did he have to endure and experience during the journey, and how did it transform him?

Review: Just like the game of Snakes and Ladders, symbolically represented in the film, everyone goes through peaks and valleys in life. The makers present two schools of thought through the characters of Rajendra Prasad and Narasimha Raju. While Raju believes in family and bonds, Prasad is a solo and unmarried individual. Both friends often debate their beliefs over drinks giving the audience a chance to reflect on life. The OG of comedy, Rajendra Prasad, makes the audience laugh with his mannerisms and comic timing. He also displays the same ease in expressing his grief. Narasimha Raju plays an important role as an empathetic friend and later plays a dead man. He does his job well to his limitations.

With its plot set up a few days ahead of the COVID-19 lockdown, the film starts on an entertaining note, with some camaraderie between construction workers and humour emanating from nonchalant and indifferent Rajendra Prasad. Even though there are plenty of emotional and thought-provoking moments in the film, it suffers from its slow-paced narrative – the characters’ journey from Bhubaneswar to a village in East Godavari feels like a never-ending saga with some superficial and forced humour. It’s a soul-stirring story with its heart in the right place but not the execution.

In terms of cinematography, the film pleasantly surprises with its aerial landscape shots and camera angles – a round of applause for cinematographer Mallikarjun Naragani. Makers made full use of the beauty of Araku valley. Music by Siva Dinavahi sounds decent and tries to salvage the lengthy runtime. Ram Tumu handles the film’s editing. The other cast includes Tulasi Shivamani, Ravi Babu, Prabhas Sreenu, Prema and Subhalekha Sudhakar.

Anukoni Prayanam, directed by Venkatesh Pediredla, featuring Rajendra Prasad and Narasimha Raju in the lead, tries to capture the ups and downs in life – looking at it from different perspectives. The comedy and drama in the film work in parts but suffers from its slow-paced and lengthy narration. Watch it for Rajendra Prasad and the film’s intent – not a regular commercial entertainer.

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