Gamanam is a mixed bag with some enjoyable moments and others that leave you wanting more.
Gamanam Movie Review: A moving look at how floods may drastically interrupt people’s life.
Critic’s Rating: 3.0/5
Six people’s lives shift around the city as the city is ravaged by floods. Will they all make it to the other side in one piece?
Sujana Rao makes her directorial debut with Gamanam, a film that depicts the lives of ordinary people, exposing their beauty, purity, and resilience. And, because the film is an anthology, the rookie must not only give all of her characters meaningful arcs, but also offer satisfactory endings for each of them. Although the flooding was the story’s ‘conflict,’ the way these individuals are built up makes subtle comments about power, gender, socioeconomic imbalance, and, most crucially, hope.
The film’s central theme is hope, which brings warmth to otherwise bleak lives. Kamala (Shriya Saran) is a deafeningly deafeningly deafeningly deafeningly deafeningly deafeningly deafeningly deafeningly deafeningly deafeningly deafeningly deafening She longs not just for her hearing to return, but also for her husband to return from Dubai, despite the fact that he hasn’t contacted her since he left. Even though his grandpa (Charu Hassan) feels he should be a doctor like his late father, Ali (Shiva Kandukuri) trains hard in cricket and intends to make it to Team India eventually. Zara (Priyanka Jawalkar), Ali’s sweetheart, comes from a stern family but dreams of a lovely life with him. Two rag pickers from a garbage yard labour at a birthday celebration one day in the hopes of earning enough money to go to a puttinaroju.
Even though he doesn’t know his birthday, the duo’s youngest wants a ‘topi shaped’ cake.
Regardless matter how hopeful these people are, they are frequently informed that they are wrong. The only thing that connects them is a city drenched in punishing rain, with each of them trying everything they can to remain afloat — literally and metaphorically. Before we get into the meat of the storey, Sujana does an excellent job of fleshing out the characters. She may take her time, which may irritate some viewers, but it’s necessary if you want to engage in these individuals when they’re waist-deep in water later on. It also helps that all of the main characters do their hardest to put themselves in the shoes of these ordinary folks.
Sujana confesses towards the film’s conclusion that she was motivated to make it after experiencing firsthand the disastrous flooding in Hyderabad. And, given that this is the storey she wants to tell, expecting anything ‘entertaining’ in this tale is unrealistic. However, the way some sequences are handled leaves you wanting more, since they lack the emotional depth that such scenarios require. She even discloses some of the film’s greatest phrases in the trailer, prompting the question of whether she should have reserved those for the film to get the desired effect. The way some of the tunes are put up or performed out will remind you of Vedam or Kaaka Muttai, but that’s where the similarities end. The film’s soundtrack by Ilaiyaraaja is disappointingly underwhelming.
Gnana Shekar’s camerawork, on the other hand, is what makes the film work. He does an excellent job of immersing you in the world of these folks. Sujana takes her time savouring the sweet nothings, but he takes his time discovering beauty in even the most tragic of circumstances. Shriya Saran is cast in a part that requires her to perform, and she takes to it like a pro. The sequences where she first hears with a hearing aid and when she discovers the truth about her spouse demonstrate why she is ideal for this part. Ali is brought to life by Shiva Kandukuri, a young guy who only wants to follow his passion and please his grandfather. His sequences with Charu Haasan, who also gives a fantastic performance, are some of his best.
When it comes to her character, Priyanka Jawalkar gets the short end of the stick, but she gives it her best. The rag-pickers will capture your heart and leave you with a lump in your throat, thanks to the youngsters that played them. Suhas, Nithya Menen, Bithri Sathi, and Raj Kandukuri all have memorable cameos.
Gamanam, on the other hand, might not be for everyone. This is not the film for you if you become impatient unless the movie is ‘quick paced’ and has masala moments. But if you’ve been waiting for Tollywood to deliver heartfelt stories, this is the film for you. Sujana’s debut film is a mixed bag, but it’s worth seeing if you enjoy this type of picture.