Cast:Venkatesh, Nayantra, Charmi, Sayaji Shinde, Pradeep Rawat, Rajiv Kanakala, Sarvanand, Sameer, Sanjay, Baljeet

Direction:VV Vinayak

Production:Nallamalupu Bujji

Music:Ramana Gogula

There may be a dozen of unpalatable things about a movie like the absurdity of the hero bashing up scores of toughies single handedly, bending a sword by catching it at the edges with bare hands etc., still nothing can stop the movie from doing well at the box office if the release time is perfect. Add to that family sentiment and a few good songs and you have a hit.

Sankranti is the time to wear new clothes, savor delicacies prepared at home, spend time with the close ones and to round it all – watch a few movies in the theatres. A Sankranti without movies is akin to a rainbow without colors.

Every Sankranti a few Telugu movies get released with a view to capitalize on the inflated disposable income and the ready-to-spend mood of the janta. Lakshmee – the latest Venkatesh starrer makes a successful bid to cash on the festive mood. The movie has all the ingredients of a hit production – a bankable star, buxom heroines, family sentiment, a comedy track and catchy songs. img180/3025/lakshmy1gy3.jpg

Market savvy moviemakers have timed the release of the family oriented movie knowing fully well that festive time is family time. Strategically released on January 14, Lakshmee is attracting crowds by droves.

Agreed, the movie is full of: melodrama, violent and tear-jerking scenes. The MTV generation might treat with derision the scenes that are soakingly emotional and scoff at such a movie in which the hero thrashes single handedly, at least 50 toughies to pulp. But the majorities of the moviegoers justify melodrama as a necessary ingredient of emotional family scenes and violence as an essential tool in the absence of proper law and order machinery to seek justice.

Lakshmee is the tale of an all sacrificing-hard working-just-powerful eldest son, Lakshmee, (Venkatesh) struggling to keep the family unity intact against the vengeful machination of Janardhan (Sayaji Shinde). In his attempt to unite his attha (aunt) who has settled in Kolkatta, with his family, Lakshmi falls in love with Nandini (Nayanatara) and invites the wrath of a goon (Pradeep Rawat). How he succeeds in thwarting the evil forces to win his love and keep the family together is for the viewer to find out.

Charmmie as an assistant to Venkatesh in the movie fails to transcend the tag of a glamour doll. Nayanatara has very few frames to express her talent. Pradeep Rawat’s acting is predictable. Comedian Sunil as Sayaji’s son keeps the audience in splits. The additional comedy track of Venumadhav gets hilarious in a cartoon scene. img180/5112/laxmi1301063ap0.jpg

Venkatesh’s practiced performance (he has acted in similar movies before) and a strong family based story line makes the movie a good one. So what if it’s a bit sentimental, don’t we Indians love that? The movie can teach a thing or two about good values in life.

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