Tollywood, after the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh into the State of Telangana and the State of Andhra Pradesh. is concentrating on making movies about Telangana’s history, its native language and culture. Even A listers like Sekhar Kammula made the wonderful Fidaa (2017,) which showcased the Telangana culture in Banswada. Raj Rachakonda made the wonderful Mallesham (2019,) about the Pochampally weavers.
Dorasaani is one such a movie, which focuses on the feudal lords of Telangana and their slowly dilapidating powercentres. K.V.R. Mahendra has made this aspect explicit in his Dorasaani.
Cast: Anand Deverakonda, Shivatmika Rajasekhar and Saranya Pradeep
Director: K.V.R. Mahendra
Music: Prashanth R. Vihari
Camera: Sunny Kurapati
The first thing Dorasaani gets right bang on is creating the authentic Telangana ambience of the mid 1980s, with the zamindari gadis (Palaces) and the whole staff of the zamindar right.
The movie starts with a paean to the rain god, imploring him to bring rain in the parched zamindari village. The scene works as both, an introductory shot of love blooming between Raju (Anand Deverakonda,) son of the painter and the daughter of the Zamindar, Devki (Shivatmika Rajasekhar,) as well as a prelude to the impending doom to their love story.
However, there is danger brewing in the relation. The graphic caste inequalities in the village do not allow them to get on well with their relationship. There is a hindrance at every step they take in their relationship. The blame here, obviously, is put on the ‘low caste’ boy who loves the ‘high caste’ girl, as is in any feudal setup.
Raju is tortured in many ways and Devki suffers in mute agony. Where does this tale end and how? This forms the crux of Dorasaani.
Firstly, kudos to the director who wanted to explore this daring tale of unswerving love, in the midst of a chaotic and disturbing ambience. Anand Deverakonda speaks through his eyes in the movie, especially in his scenes with Shivatmika. Shivatmika does a decent job of a Telangana feudal lord’s daughter. There is not one scene which does not have a purpose in the movie. Dorasaani is a delight to watch, both as a story and also as a powerful screenplay.
The supporting cast play their parts to the requirement of the script. The camerawork of Sunny Kurapati looms through the lanes, sideways and the whole span of the zamindari with love and precision. The cinematography is one more positive to take, as it maintained a natural tone throughout the movie.
The music by Vihari is impressive, with the authentic beats of Telangana throughout the movie. The scenes where Raju is subjected to humiliation are worth mentioning for their great background score.
Lastly, Dorasaani is a director’s movie, who tells a story which should be told, at any cost in Tollywood.
Dorasaani will remain a great debut movie for both its leading characters and more so for its director. Give it a watch this week!