Release Date : Mar 22,2013
Maranthen Mannithen
Review by : Behindwoods Review Board
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Production: Manchu Entertainment
Cast: Aadhi, Lakshmi Manchu, Sundeep Kishan, Taapsee Pannu
Direction: Kumar Nagendra
Screenplay: Kumar Nagendra
Story: Kumar Nagendra
Music: Ilaiyaraja
Background score: Ilaiyaraja
Cinematography: M.R.Palanikumaar
Singers: Andrea, Anitha, Bhavatharini, Ilayaraja, Mano, N.S. Ramya & Geethamadhuri, Rahul, Sri Vardhini
Lyrics : Muthulingam, Na.Muthukumar, Nu.Metha, Pazhani Bharathi, R.Ramu

Prior to the release of Kumar Nagendra’s Maranthen Mannithen, there was a slight confusion as to whether it is a Tamil – Telugu bilingual or a dubbed version of the Telugu original Gundello Godavari which released a few weeks back. The music of Maestro Ilaiyaraja made sure that there was some expectation attached to the release of the movie today.

It begins interestingly enough with a hush-hush marriage between Malli (Aadhi) and Chithra (Lakshmi Manchu) under mysterious circumstances, followed by a raging flood which devastates the entire village. Malli jumps into action and makes sure that he and Chithra hang on to their lives. Then, they decide to uncover the secrets in their respective lives to make sure that they die without any guilt.

The film then moves to flashback mode as we are shown what Taapsee has to do with Aadhi’s life and in the same way the men in Lakshmi’s life are also brought to light.

Even though the ambitious attempt to portray a flood ravaged situation is appreciable, the usage of miniatures, green screens and VFX is evident. This entire attempt turns out to be tacky. Otherwise the visual tone of the film is rich thanks to the magnificent Godavari river backdrop that is present in most of the scenes. The cinematographer M.R.Palanikumaar has done a decent job and that counts as a positive aspect of the film.

Both the lead characters’ flashback scenes have nothing interesting or marked. Taapsee’s character has been fleshed out as one who is on a hormonal overdrive, constantly lusting on Aadhi. Lakshmi’s pre-marriage life has its share of womanizers too and the resultant melodrama is dated and passé.

Though Taapsee looks ravishing, such an inconsequential role which solely intends to showcase her physical attributes, may not look good on her resume. Aadhi’s physique and manly edge are obvious pluses but his emotions need more work. Lakshmi Manchu’s mature appearance is evident alongside younger heroes. ‘Yaaruda Mahesh’ Sundeep shows some promise as Lakshmi’s childhood flame and with good scripts he is bound to make a mark. The rest of the character actors are all familiar faces in the Telugu industry.

The film’s dubbing leaves a lot to be desired. The lip sync is out of place at many instances and certain portions in Telugu have been retained. When they have decided to dub a movie, why not dub entirely rather than leave a few scenes untouched?

Rooster fights are supposed to be a crucial aspect of the script in Lakshmi’s flashback portions but one such sequence has been entirely passed off just with the appropriate sound design in place. No visuals of roosters fighting at all! When they have taken the efforts to portray floods through CGI, they could have attempted the same for this rooster fight sequence too.

Ilayaraja’s scores for the movie are uninspiring with each number having shades of his yesteryear numbers. With the movie having an 80s setting, the songs sound apt for the period but there is hardly any memorable number. And two crass item numbers, one in each half, are a real eyesore. Raja’s background score makes a mark in certain scenes.

In all, the movie suffers from lack of nativity and its content is also heavily dated and pedestrian.

Verdict: Dated content



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