“Shatamanam Bhavati” is how elders bless their younger generation with a whole-hearted warmth wishing they “live a long life of 100 years”. The warmth extended by their unpolluted loved and affection gives immense joy to the next generation. But, do they respond back with the gratitude that the elders deserve? – this is the premise of Satish Vegesna’s movie “Shatamanam Bhavati”
As the technology evolved and the communication become hassle free, a flurry of opportunities opened up which the previous generations have never imagined. In search of such opportunities, the children moved to these distant lands with no ill intentions but an aspiration to lead a comfortable life. The villages started to be less and less populated with a density of population in cities increasing at a rapid pace.
Athreyapuram is one such village where still farming is a primary source of occupation. Thick green farms extend hectares of land. The most respected couple in the village, Raghavaraju (Prakash Raj), and Janakamma (Jayasudha). Their names are not only the namesakes of Lord Rama and Seeta, but their behavior is ideal to compared to them.
They spend their retired life in the village with only their eldest son Bangarraju (Naresh) and his family with them while the other three children were settled down in America, Canada and Australia with their respective families. As the years progressed, the communication reduced and the hope of old couple to see their children started to deplete year after year. One day, Raghavaraju decides to write a mail to all his children mentioning that he and his wife are going to be divorced as he no longer wants to live with his wife, the preference of whom were changed from husband to children.
Raju (Sharawanand) is the son of Bangarraju and he is the ideal son any father could get. He is very educated but he wants to dedicate his life to the service of his grandfather. He uses his skills to reduce the efforts towards daily routines in the village. Of the three families that return to solve the issue of their parents’ divorce, the only sister Jhansi’s (Indraja) daughter is Nithya (Anupama Parameswaran).
What follows next is a collage of events that audience and the family members were reminded of their nostalgic memories only to later realize what they lost in all these years. The movie closes off with an emotional note with an old couple requesting their children of their only wish that is left- to keep seeing them as many times as they could in the remaining life.
The family drama with the theme of parents craving for their children have been beaten to death in Telugu cinema but Satish brings in something magical with the limited scope. I call in magical because there is nothing new that the story had to offer and there is immense chance that the cliches would take away the emotions. But, Satish managed the negative aspects to give it a new spin. The emotions were communicated through Dubsmashes. The niece from foreign is not the typical headstrong girl. The lost love story of his uncle doesn’t seek redemption.
But, there are some aspects that you cannot take away from the family drama – the belongingness, the sacrifices, the love, and affection. Satish makes sure that audience would never feel that they are being put through another drama with innovations from the village in terms of comic scenes or the technology.
The movie has a stellar cast with Prakash Raj and Jayasudha. Naresh, Indraja and Sijju, all of them putting their best performances. Sharwanand’s choice of movies has always been excellent, despite the movies that were failed, it is easy to identify what excited him in the script. This is no different. This is a coming of age performance for him.
Anupama Parameswaran steals the show. Despite such immense talent around her, she had her say. She is just brilliant as Nithya. She is cute and bubbly for a maradhalu (niece) and she is equally brilliant a someone who is in love. She is here to stay.
Overall, Satish Vegesna’s “Shatamanam Bhavati” is a movie that ticks all the right chords for a family drama with values at its center. Despite being a regular family movie, the lead cast makes it worth watching and Anupama Parameswaran is definitely here to stay.
Release: 2017 | U |Runtime: 135 Mins |
Direction: Vegesna Satish |
Screenplay: Vegesna Satish |
Cinematographer: Sameer Reddy |
Editor: Madhu |
Music: Mickey J Meyer |
Production: Sri Venkateswara Creations |
Cast: Prakash Raj, Jayasudha, Naresh, Sharwanand, Anuapama Parameswaran