Baahubali: the ‘Made in India’ Superhero

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The search for an Indian Superhero finally seems to be over. Hrithik tried, SRK tried, Mukesh Khanna tried..even Salman and Rajinikant tried, but none could use their prowess to have the cinemas houseful over the long weekend as Baahubali2 has done. Rajamouli seems to have finally realized that an Indian superhero can’t be created by aping the western counterparts and created one that understands the emotions of the countrymen.

Brilliant marketing strategy and behind the scenes footage, supported by a decent storyline and CG hype seems to have done the trick. ‘Why did Kattapa kill Baahubali?’ resonated well with audiences who saw the first part. Those who didn’t during the first release, saw it last month thanks to a smart ploy of re-releasing the movie just before the finale. Even Netflix screened it briefly till the theatrical release.

The movie starts well explaining the story of the older Baahubali who is the ‘Complete Man’ while his cousin is the anti-hero. The political machinery sets in to ensure that the hero is killed, bringing us back to where the first part left and completing it with a grand finale of ‘innovative war strategies’ and hyped action scenes. The story is predictable, but the treatment is what drives us to the big screen.

The graphics are not up to the mark, but the sequel is better than the first part with all the emotions that go into the making of an epic. Some of the metaphors and dialogues make you laugh. Some others engross you. Dubbing doesn’t matter. The lead actors do their job with some dramatic acting that has been the DNA of Indian cinema for long. Rajamouli has cast his actors in a way that is representative of the whole of South India. Of course, having KJo on board makes it more than national. Overall a complete package for the long weekend!

However, it has had its own set of detractors and armchair critics. Part of it is because Indians willingly consume any trash from western superheroes. The same attempt by an Indian is criticized for various reasons. We accept the Cross driving away evil and don’t call it religion. Lois Lane running behind Clark Kent is also accepted and not considered feminist. But showing Indian gods and women in traditional roles is considered ‘religious’ and ‘feminist’. Other than some CG issues, Baahubali is a great effort.

No movie in recent times has driven the nation in a frenzy to packed cinema halls. Join the gang and enjoy the spectacle!

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