Tejas Nair | June 14, 2015
The buzz around the Baahubali franchise is immense, and anyone not having the urge to watch it should get themselves checked. Whether you like it or not is not relevant, because this epic war film is nothing like you have ever seen in an Indian film. Visually, at least. Atheists must skedaddle, for this epic war drama takes references from Indian mythological history, which means some sequences will be specious for those thinking minds to bear.
A queen who is on her way to embrace death uses her supernatural powers to hand over an infant to a tribe habituating under a gigantic waterfall’s catchment. This child, whose destiny has some relation with what lies beyond the waterfall, is the protagonist of the story, the crux of which lies in that beautiful thing majority of the filmmakers around the world love and majority of the audience around the world hate: cliché. So to speak, the plot where this kid grows to become a hunky man (Prabhas) who explores his background story and gets absorbed into a period world of power, war and betrayal is purely basic on a pH scale. Of course, the God-like story makes only half sense. And it is up to the viewers to carry out the process of making the other half sensible.
It is apparent that telling a new story was never the intention of the makers. They use a tried-and-tested theory to showcase what they can do with the existing filmmaking technical aspects. From the entrancing score to the monumental designs to the artsy CGI – everything works greatly for the film, entertaining its audience who feel feeble in front of the lively yet beastly characters. Although, there are instances where there is no blend between the CGI and the setup.
The mammoth setup and its design is the highlight of the film which demands total attention. Even though the film is long enough for the naysayers to rant about, there won’t be any instance when one will feel bored with the events. The score itself is enough to hold you captive. The battle sequences and warfare are so good that anyone who has watched the American TV series Game of Thrones (2011) will definitely be able to relate. So much for the epic-ness, I could even sense few sequences inspired from the series. Performances are better if you compare the actors’ previous performances in past films. The blink-and-you-miss love story adds romance to the otherwise tense plot.
BOTTOM LINE: The first part of Baahubali is an extravagant feast for the dim Indian eyes which sets the bar high for future epic war dramas, if one is ready to ignore the loads of scenes that defy logic or science or both, ironically on a massive scale.
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