Cast: Nani, Anupama Parameshwaran, Rukshar, Brahmaji, Devadarshini, Ravi Awana and others
Director: Merlapaka Gandhi
Nani has been giving continuous hits with producers and distributors getting good profits from his films. His latest film, Krishnarjuna Yudham, portrays Nani playing a dual role. Merlapaka Gandhi is the director, while Anupama Parameshwaran and Rushkar are the female leads. As the title suggests, the story revolves around Krishna (Nani) and Arjun (Nani). Krishna lives in the village of Akkurthi in Chittoor district while Arjun is a rock star in Prague. Krishna is looking for the ideal girl to share his life with, whereas Arjun is quite the flirt. Riya (Rushkar), the village sarpanch’s (Nagineedu) granddaughter, comes to Akkurthi for her holidays and falls in love with Krishna.
Arjun, in Prague, meets Subbalakshmi (Anupama), a traditional Indian girl, and is entranced by her, but she rejects him. Subsequently, both these girls return to Hyderabad and somehow go missing. Krishna and Arjun too arrive in Hyderabad soon after, and starts searching for the girls. In the process, the story unfolds as unexpected elements are revealed. What happened to the two women and how Krishna and Arjun rescue them is the crux of the story. Director Merlapaka Gandhi’s earlier two films were successful and he takes an outdated story this time for Krishnarjuna Yudham. Dual roles are not new in Telugu, and Nani had already played such a role previously. The director chose trafficking of women as the theme, but completely failed to impress in execution, especially in the second half. The first half is far more entertaining and the director takes his time to establish the connections between the protagonists and the female leads.
He cleverly managed to capture both these characters well. But the story completely disappoints in the second half as the director tried to project Nani more in action sequences rather than narrating an engaging story. After the interval, the story is also completely predictable and doesn’t retain the viewers’ interest. The first half even has a hilarious act by Brahmaji, especially the scenes with Devadarshini. Sadly, the director completely ignored the two female leads in the second half and their roles appeared like a cameo. Merlapaka Gandhi’s forte is comedy, with which he was successful in his earlier two films, but in this film he failed to replicate the same success.
When it comes to performance, Nani entertains as Krishna and his Chittoor accent is superb. But the other role where Nani plays a rockstar is a complete failure. He wasn’t able to play the role effortlessly and the style designed for him wasn’t a suitable one. Anupama was beautiful and looked far more glamorous than she did in her former films. She is a great performer as well, but as usual is in Nani’s film, the female lead didn’t get much of a role to play. Rushkar was not very impressive. Brahmaji gets another good role and actually he carried the first half with his entertainment act. He proved that he is a big asset to any film if he is given a chance. Devadarshini shines in a few scenes. Ravi Awana played the villain and luckily, he rendered the dialogues in Hindi which had Telugu subtitles.
Technically, the cinematography was done well, and cinematographer Karthik Gattamaneni captured some good locations of Europe and the village too. Music by hiphop artist Thamiza was average and Nani was not a good fit for any of the songs meant for the rockstar. However, some of the dialogues were entertaining.
Finally, Krishnarjuna Yudham is not a great film to watch, it’s a regular and routine film. Nani shines in one role and completely fails in the other role. From beginning to end it’s only Nani’s face on the screen as they didn’t give screen space for the two female leads. Merlapaka Gandhi’s narration goes out of track in the second half which is not interesting, but predictable.