Katha Sangama movie cast: Hariprriya, Rishab Shetty, Kishore, Raj B. Shetty, Yagna Shetty, Prakash Belawadi, Avinash, Balaji Manohar
Katha Sangama movie directors: Kiranraj K, Chandrajith Belliappa, Shashi Kumar P, Rahul PK, Jamadagni Manoj, Karan Ananth, Jayashankar A
Katha Sangama movie rating: 3 stars
An anthology movie is made up of vignettes that usually have a thematic connection. But, it is hard to find a common theme in Katha Sangama. As the title suggests, this film is just a confluence of stories. Each story is different from the other in terms of stagging, performance or the premise. But, each contributes to building a narrative arc which reflects on various aspects of our existence as a society.
It is perhaps for this reason, the first film in this anthology revolves around a grown-up’s fascination with the rainbow, an assembly of various beautiful colours that is a sight for sore eyes. Otherwise, I can’t think of a better reason for the film titled Rainbow Land to find a place in this collection of movies. It is a very simple film about a father’s attempt to build a fantasy land, from a children’s book, in his backyard for his little girl. The protagonist (Kishore) in this story is a Tamilian living in Bengaluru. Kishore and his wife (Yagna Shetty) use Hindi as a code language to converse about ‘sensitive’ topics in front of their daughter. But, Kannada is the common tongue at home. Diversity is what makes this little family appealing to our senses. The story starts with the father’s efforts to build a make-believe fantasy land. And, it ends with him discovering the fact that he has been living in a Rainbow Land all along.
I would also like to mention Paduvaralli, which is based on Colombian author Hernando Téllez’s short story Just Lather, That’s All. The Kannada adaptation for this anthology is set in the backdrop of British Raj. Staying true to its source, the director unfolds this story through the voices in the head of the barber. The story’s protagonist is a famous barber who is also part of a rebellion movement against British Raj. However, his support for the rebellion is a secret. Or the barber thinks so. After capturing the accomplishes of the barber in a three-day hunt in the forest, the officer-in-charge seeks out his service for a clean shave. It puts him in a moral crisis – to kill or not to kill his enemy. The director adds a small layer to the character of the officer that gives a different dimension to the story.
The collection of stories in Katha Sangama is also connected by filmmaker Rishab Shetty’s intent to pay his tribute to legendary director Puttanna Kanagal. The film borrows its title from Kanagal’s 1976 anthology film of the same name. While the earlier film narrated four stories, the latest Katha Sangama has as many as seven stories. This film is put together by seven different teams of directors, actors, cinematographers and music directors. And the confluence of such myriad talents is what makes this Katha Sangama a satisfying experience.