There is a wrong notion people follow, “A Sculpture lies inside a Stone”. In fact, “Sculpture lies inside Sculptor’s mind, not inside the stone”. S.S.Rajamouli is a great sculptor who takes a normal stone (story) and converts it into a beautiful sculpture (film). The chisel he uses is “Technology”. That’s why film industry calls him “Jakkanna”. This time he came up with “Baahubali” which is quoted as the India’s biggest motion picture. Since the arrival of Eastman Colour and Scope cinema in India, this two-part periodical drama has used the most advanced technology. Produced by Shobhu Yarlagadda and Prasad Devineni under the banner of “Arka Media”, this film stars Prabhas, Rana Daggubati, Anushka, Tamanna and Ramya Krishna in the pivotal roles. The first part was released on 10th July, 2015 as “Baahubali – The Beginning”. Now I’m going to share my experience watching it in the first show.
Please forgive me for a lengthy review and all inline images used are taken from trailers.
Screenplay – Direction:
With “Magadheera”, Rajamouli became noted for employing a wide range technology for it. With “Eega”, he proved that he stepped up in using the technology. But “Baahubali” made use of technology to a great extent such that the whole Indian Film Industry turned towards Telugu Cinema.
Coming to the screenplay and direction, this film has a significance. If people like me who had already watched this film and written reviews like this, narrate every frame to those who haven’t watched yet, nothing is going to harm them. The reason is, “Jakkanna” attracts you with his extraordinary visuals. So let’s talk about them now.
Firstly, the scene where Sivagami rescues the child. Here the credit should goes to five people. Director “Rajamouli”, Cinematographer “Senthil Kumar”, Visual Effects “Sreenivas Mohan”, Music Director “Keeravani” and Sivagami “Ramya Krishna”. These five have printed this amazing scene in the audience’s heart with their enormous effort.
Secondly, the scene where Shivudu carries “Shivalingam” on his shoulders. The song “Sivuni Aana” that comes in the background elevated the character with its “Slow Motion Shots”. A dance bit by Prabhas is a visual treat for audience. This should be watched on the silver screen to experience its actual eminence.
Next comes the scene where Shivudu climbs the mountain. The Cinematography and visual effects gave their full contribution to make it amazing.
Sincere thanks to Rajamouli for his imagination and Sreenivas Mohan for visualizing this on screen. From here, Rajamouli takes his audiences to a new world for the next five to six minutes. It can be said as the first eminent part of first half.
Though the coming scenes run at a slower pace, Rajamouli gives a top level narration with the scene where Bhallaladeva’s (Rana) statue is erected. Before this, the entire “Maahishmathi” kingdom is portrayed in aerial shots which show the effort of art director “Sabu Cyril”. The fort, houses are built fabulously and every penny paid on this creation is paid off. Even Keeravani elevated the screenplay step by step with his haunting background score. As per the film sources, this was shot for 12 days. Every frame portrays the entire team’s effort. Hats off!
Every director has some signature scenes. This is one such for Rajamouli. Capturing everyone’s emotion made this scene as the best one of first half.
The second half has complete Rajamouli’s mark. The scene where Shivudu strives for his goal is amazing. “Kattappa – Shivudu” scene can be said as the best scene of Baahubali’s first part. Here Satyaraj’s performance is amazing.
I think only Rajamouli can think of scenes which do not cross story’s boundaries and catch the audiences’ pulse too. This was already proved with his previous films. Baahubali proved it once again.
The main asset of second half is “Sivagami”. Quoted as “The Epitome of Justice”, Ramya Krishna’s performance took the character to the next level.
The next important part of this film is “War with Kalakeya”. It started with a good elevation with Baahubali’s “Jai Maahishmathi” slogan and the war strategy applied. But its impact went down slowly with the time due to less effective background score and made it feel a bit longer. In addition, the new language “Kilikil” invented specially for this film and Prabhakar who acted as Kalakeya lord could not impress much.
The film was elevated again with the climax scene. This is the most important and intelligent scene as per the story but many audiences were unable to digest it as they felt this ending abrupt. But I feel no better scene can be written to end the first part and begin the second part than this with the available story.
Baahubali is correctly quoted as India’s biggest motion picture and should be watched on the silver screen.
Characters – Performances:
Shivudu, Baahubali – Prabhas:
If there is an actor like Prabhas in a film, the writers and directors get chance to make the audiences believe their imagination. One example for this is found in the scenes shot in Bulgaria.
Bhallaladeva – Rana Daggubati:
Devasena – Anushka:
Avantika – Tamannah:
Sivagami – Ramya Krishna:
Kattappa – Satyaraj:
Bijjaladeva – Nasser:
Kaalakeya – Prabhakar:
Aslaam Khan – Sudeep:
1) The background score where Sivagami rescues the child.
2) The background score that comes after “Nippule Swaasaga” song.
3) The background score in the scene of erecting Bhallaladeva’s statue.
4) The background score in the scene between Kattappa and Shivudu in the second half.
Visualization of Songs:
2) Dheevara. This song has the best visuals of all songs in this part, especially the visuals in its last lines
3) Pacha Bottesina. Rajamouli got inspired from his godfather “Raghavendra Rao” in visualizing this song and the sets erected for it are so grand making it a visual treat.
4) Nippule Swaasaga. This song made the screenplay so eminent portraying Maahishmathi in aerial shots and the pain of Devasena character.
5) Mamathala Thalli. This song has elevated Sivagami’s character with some signature shots of Rajamouli.
1) The first most scenes where Sivagami rescues Mahendra Baahubali.
2) The shot which showed Shivudu’s shadow in water while carrying Shivalingam.
3) Bhalladeva’s bull fight.
4) A colourful shot where Shivudu says Avantika that he will fulfil her goal.
5) The scene between Kattappa and Shivudu.
6) Some shots on Prabhas during the war with Kaalakeya.
1) Production Values. Though a director comes up with an extraordinary story, a film cannot be made unless a producer comes forward. Shobhu Yarlagadda and Prasad Devineni should be thanked first from bottom of our hearts for producing this Indian epic film with a budget of nearly 250 crores.
2) Sabu Cyril’s Art Direction. The effort of Sabu Cyril in building Maahishmathi is fantastic and mind blowing. Every set erected for this film serves a grand visual treat for audience’s eyes.
3) Sreenivas Mohan’s Visual Effects. He visualized every imagination of Rajamouli perfectly on the screen. Though most of the shots are shot in a green mat, every visual is appearing real. Fantastic work!
4) Peter Hein’s Action Choreography. Another thing that entertains audiences in this kind of periodic films is Fight sequences. Peter Hein succeeded in choreographing very good action episodes especially in Kalakeya’s war of second half.
5) Costumes. Costume designing by Rama Rajamouli and Prashanthi suited well for the story’s time and different characters.
6) Weapons. Nearly 20,000 weapons were designed exclusively for this film. Among all, I liked Bhallaladeva’s weapon which is an Indian Club used in different ways.
7) Language. Generally, in periodic dramas, language used, would be of ancient kind. Like in Magadheera, even this time Rajamouli used the normal slang which makes all the audience feel comfortable.
8) Kilikil Language. Just for one set of characters, a new language was invented by noted Tamil lyricist “Madhan Karky” who is the son of the most prominent lyricist Vairmuthu.
2) Slower narration in the first half.
3) Less effective romantic scenes between Prabhas and Tamannah.
4) Kaalakeya war scenes’ decreased effect with time.
5) Less effective kilikil language.
What should be learned from Baahubali?
2) You should not lose energy with time and you should ignite the energy in others and be a good captain.
3) You should give everyone their own credits for their work.
4) Hard work done with the above things never let you down.