Out of nowhere the remakes are gathering steam after a string of original films this year. If it was Bachchhan Paandey last week, a terrible remake of the original Jigarthanda, then it is the Telugu film Bheemla Nayak, an official remake of the Malayalam film Ayyappanum Koshiyum. Now the film did have a theatrical release last month and there were talks of its Hindi Dub releasing too. While the Hindi Dub remains unreleased till date, the Telugu film made decent amount of noise. Knowing that it starred Pawan Kalyan, I was mentally prepared for it to be a complete masala entertainer and skip the subtlety or the nuances of the original. That said, is Bheemla Nayak worth a watch even as a standalone film, lets find out.
Story & Screenplay
An official adaptation of the Malayalam film Ayyappanum Koshiyum, Bheemla Nayak follows the ego clash between two alpha males which escalates into a fiery upmanship. The story as predicted rightly is a mass masala entertainer although a few nuances of the original are retained to be fair. But when you have the title named after just one of the two protagonists then you know where your loyalties lie. The screenplay begins on an authentic note by which I mean closer to the original where youbare introduced to the world and the early conflict between the two protagonists. Only one of them gets a heroic entry anf no prizes for guessing who. It was at this point that I had to stop expecting this to be a faithful remake. It clearly wasn’t going to be designed that way. And from here on, I decided to view it as a separate film altogether. To my surprise, I began enjoying the proceedings a little more after this acceptance. The situations created are interesting while some of the instances of others influencing the two protagonists are retained well from the original. There are other characters which have a little more life here with an additional screentime dedicated to a backstory which ties up at the end. The proceedings are entertaining. Another good bit is that the length of the film was a little less than 150 minutes as compared to the original which was 3 hours. So while the screenplay lacks the subtly of the original, it is still entertaining and packs a punch(by which I mean the final fight sequence which was pretty good here).
Dialogues, Music & Direction
The dialogues are massy and I could totally imagine a full house breaking into a cheer here. The music by Thaman is fantastic and adds a whole layer of machismo to the drama. The BGM is good too. The action sequences are well choreographed and the cinematography is pretty good as well. Director Saagar K Chandra had a huge task before him to recreate the brilliant original with two superstars here. And he does a good balancing act. Although it lacks the nuance of the original but his direction is pretty good here which compensates it with mass entertainment.
The performances are pretty good here. Samuthirakani as Jeevan and Murli Sharma as Kodanda have their moments to shine. Mounika Reddy as Harini has a good screen presence and does a pretty good job. Samyukhta Menon as Daniel’s wife is pretty good particularly towards the end. Nithya Menen as Sugana is fiery and brilliant and managed to impress me a lot. Rana Daggubati as Daniel has a towering screen presence and he is quite brilliant here. But watch out for Pawan Kalyan who is exceptional as Bheemla. One complaint that I had of his character in Vakeel Saab was that his character was over the top. But here and pleasantly so, he is well measured although he unleashes his beast mode in the second hour. But in the quieter moments he had a lot of restraint including the exceptional final act. Overall, a great outing by him.
Bheemla Nayak is an entertaining adaptation of the original Ayyappanum Koshiyum. Available on Hotstar.