Majili movie star cast: Samantha Akkineni, Naga Chaitanya
Majili movie director: Shiva Nirvana
Majili movie rating: 1 star
Is not the plot of Majili absurd? Is not a teenager’s efforts to force her foster parents to start living together a bit awkward? Are not women in this film submissive? The answer to these questions is yes. Majili is directed by Shiva Nirvana, who gave us Ninnu Kori (2017). Shiva’s first film was about ‘the other man’ and his latest outing, Majili, is about ‘the other woman’.
Purna (Naga Chaitanya) is pinning for his girlfriend Anshu (Divyansha Kaushik), who vanished from his life about 13 years ago. Purna is married to a very beautiful and generous Sravani (Samantha Akkineni), who doesn’t appear on the screen until the interval. That’s unfortunate as the film could have benefited from Samantha’s undeniable screen presence. Instead, what we get is a predictable sob story, where actors are huffing and puffing at the challenge of delivering their dialogues in a convincing way.
Whenever Purna misses his ex-girlfriend, he retreats alone into the fancy hotel room, where Anshu last left him, promising to return the next day. But, she never does. It’s unclear whether or not Purna made any effort to contact her the next day. Instead of drinking away his sorrow behind a closed door, why did he not think about locating her whereabouts? Given that we bought tickets to this film, we owe it to the director to quietly lap up whatever is thrown at us without thinking too much. And what is the necessity of reasoning in a film that tries to guilt-trip you into believing via publicity that you are watching a good film and the best performances because it has Samantha Akkineni and Naga Chaitanya in it?
Majili is riddled with problems including clumsy acting, plot inconsistency, unoriginality, no sign of reality, lack of concern for reason. But, my biggest issue with Majili is Shiva’s attempt to set some severely unrealistic and highly unreasonable relationship expectations with his crowd-pleasing melodrama. It is one of those films that propagates the theory that self-respect goes out of the window the moment you find true love. And even more problematic aspect of this film is it only sets the bar high for the woman in a relationship, while the man is allowed to be a self-destructive piece of work.
Purna mistreats Sravani. He insults her parents. He refuses to acknowledge her as his lawfully wedded wife and consummate their relationship. And yet, Sravani doesn’t give up on him as her love is so pure that no amount of insult can deter her. The audience could have bought Shiva’s definition of love and pain if it were the 80s. But, in the era, where women are becoming more assertive about their sexuality, likes, dislikes and equality, this film comes across as backward thinking.
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