Making devotional movies are not very common in our Telugu films nowadays. Only a film releases for every one or two years. To make that one film a successful one, it should be made with utmost sincerity leaving no stone unturned to make it and depict about the god. Raghavendra Rao, who was the most successful director for his commercial entertainers made Annamaiah as his first film in devotional genre and scored a very big success with it with Nagarjuna. After that they made Sriramadasu, Shirdi Sai and now they are coming up with another devotional film on Hathiramji and his life, who is said to be a great devotee of Lord Venkateswara. Let’s see how it works on us as it is in theatres from today.
Hathiram Bhavaji or Hathiram Baba or Hathiramji was a saint from North India who visited Tirumala on a pilgrimage and became a devotee of Lord Venkateswara. He settled there by setting up an ashram near the temple. He had the privilege of playing dice with Lord Balaji. It is believed that Lord Balaji was pleased with his devotion and used to come to his place to play dice with him. One day, the game went on for too long and the Lord suddenly remembered that He was getting late for the daily worship. In a hurry, He left one of His ornaments, a necklace, in Bhavaji’s ashram. When the priests opened the temple for the day, they found that an ornament was missing, and instituted a search for it. Bhavaji also realized what happened, and wanted to return the ornament to the temple. He was however caught and house-arrested by the temple guards who thought he was the thief. The story is full of excerpts from the life of Hathiramji.
Cast and Performance
Nagarjuna is fantastic as Hathiramji and made us believe that he is the character and not the actor playing it. He seemed to have performed the character with utmost care. Anushka Shetty as Krishnamma is superb and looks superb in her role. Saurabh Raj Jain as Lord Venkateswara is well fit and performed accordingly. Pragya Jaiswal and Vimala Raman are nice in their roles. Jagapathi Babu is perfect in his limited role and Rao Ramesh is good. All other actors are equally good as their characters.
Story of Om Namo Venkatesaya is the life story of Hathiramji and screenplay is written good. Dialogues are written well in sync with the scenes and are easily understandable.
Songs composed by MM Keeravani are nice and good to hear. He did superb job in making background score which is felt throughout the movie which makes audience connect to the scenes and emotions even more. Cinematography by S Gopal Reddy is superb. Visuals are so rich in colors and are delight to watch. Editing is good. Art director did good job in designing sets and it’s color combinations. Production values are rich and apt.
- Nagarjuna Akkineni
- Music by MM Keeravani
- Cinematography by Gopal Reddy
- Slow Pace
Nagarjuna Akkineni and Raghavendra Rao’s combination is the best in terms of making devotional movies surpassing each and every hurdle and expectations with every movie. This movie Om Namo Venkatesaya is nothing short of their previous movies with the perfect casting as main plus point. Jagapathi Babu and Anushka Shetty’s part seemed to be diverted out of the story. Director Raghavendra Rao is unbeatable in terms of making devotional movies in entertaining way. The way he runs the movie with engaging screenplay is his huge addition. He got the best performances from his actors and made this movie full of emotions. Attempting these movie in these days where youth is not interested in watching devotional movies is brave attempt. To sum up, the combo of Raghavendra Rao and Nagarjuna Akkineni never disappoints.