Baahubali II is a technical marvel and a visual treat that opens a grand spectacle to movie buffs.
The palace intrigues, sacrifices and extolled virtues portrayed in the movie give it an aura of the magnitude of Mahabharata. S.S. Rajamouli has succeeded in living up to the larger-than-life hype generated ahead of the movie’s release, mainly due to the stupendous success of the first part.
All the key players in Part I have come together for the sequel. The character of Nasser as Pingalathevar personifies all the traits of Shakuni as a wily manipulator and the veteran actor unleashes his overwhelming acting prowess.
Baahubali evolves around the machinations of this Shakuni, which trigger palace intrigues in the kingdom of Mahishmathi, where Amarendra Baaahubali and Pallalathevan are heirs to the throne of Rajamatha Sivagami.
Pallalatheva’s vaulting ambition to be anointed the emperor combined with the wily aspirations of Pinagalthevar conjure up dark shades of human follies that conspire to unleash dramatic events. This batters the foundations of Mahishmathi’s lofty credentials as a heavenly kingdom on earth, where its key players including Baahubali and Sivagami would defy all odds to honour their word. And the ‘Dharma’ they are bound to protect.
And in Anushka’s Devasenai, we get another character of steel with similar virtues and overwhelming pride.
The palace intrigues and a deep misunderstanding thrust Devasenai to a pivotal role in Mahishmathi and this forces a stand-off with Sivagami.
The twists and turns then inject high drama into the vast canvas that Rajamouli doles out for his embedded audience. The palace face-off between Devasenai and Sivagami oozes with profound rhetoric that would set ablaze the narrative and deeply influence even those who have a dislike for period films.
The melodrama that ends in the interval break has been deftly calibrated by the filmmakers and would stand out as a testimony to the prowess of Rajamouli’s craft.
The period movie of epic proportions has neatly weaved in the element of suspense about why the loyal Kattapa killed AmarendraBahubali in Part I, which had baffled the audience.
Apart from Tamanaah Bhatia, all characters in Part I play key roles. Prabhas as the protagonist, Rana Dagubatti as his tormentor-in-chief, Ramya Krishnan as the Rajamatha Sivagami and Satyaraj as Katappa excel in their roles. Anushka Shetty stands out in the sequel with a stunning portrayal of Devasenai, spanning two age groups.
The film should be watched in a theatre with 4k high-definition format for the audience to absorb the stunning visuals and to cherish the vibrant ambience associated with a movie spanning a herculean canvas which only Rajamouli can curate in Indian cinema.
Amarendra Baahubali is succeeded by Mahendra Baahubali to ensure poetic justice and perhaps usher in a benevolent regime in Mahishmathi. But Rajamouli has ensconced himself as the Baahubali of Indian cinema with a larger-than-life canvas with which he unveiled his magnum opus. Baahubali 2 seems to be a sure shot box office charmer.
And if you are still wondering why Kattapa killed Amarendra Baahubali, the answer is a neatly packaged grandiose movie in more than 6,500 screens all over the country.
Rating 3.5 / 5