Shaakuntalam helmed by noted director Gunashekar’s much awaited mythological epic love story features Samantha in the titular role Shakuntala. Made on a budget of around 80 crores, the movie had it’s world-wide release in theatres and let’s have an insight look on the audience response from the early shows and US premieres.
Star cast : Samantha Ruth Prabhu, Dev Mohan, Mohan Babu, Sachin Khedkar, Prakash Raj, Gautami, Kabir bedi, Madhu Bala, Ananya Nagalla, Allu Arha and others.
Directed by : Gunashekar
Produced by : Neelima Guna
Composed by : Mani Sharma
Dialogues by : Sai Madhav Burra
Editing by : Prawin Pudi
Run time : 2 hrs 30 mins
Genre : Drama, Historical
Viswamitra was a respected Rishi in ancient India, starts his penance to acquire more powers. Lord Indra frightened by his powers and tensed about losing his throne sends Menaka from heaven to earth, to lure and break his meditation. Menaka becomes successful in seducing Viswamitra and they both give birth to a baby girl, but Menaka abandons her child as a living human being who is not allowed in heaven.
Sage Kanva who noticed the baby near his hermitage names her as ‘Shakunthala’ and raises her as his daugher. After several years, Shakunthala comes across king Dushyanth (Dev Mohan) in the forest and within no time they both fall in love for each other and soon both get married according to the Gandharva marriage system and finally Shakunthala gets pregnant. Dushyant left Shakuntala in the forest with a promise to be back so that he can take her as his beloved wife and enter the palace. Shakuntala would often miss him and daydream about him. This became her usual ritual for the entire day.
One day, Maharishi Durvasa visited the ashram of Sage Kanva. Shakuntala was lost in her husband’s thoughts and failed to greet him. This angered the sage. He cursed Shakuntala immediately. He told her, “Whoever you are dreaming about shall forget all about you. This soon reflects and Dushyant after reaching his kingdom completely forgets about Shakunthala due to the curse of Durvasa Maharshi.
The rest of the film showcases the hurdles faced by Samantha to prove her relationship with King Dushyant.
Plus Points :
Samantha in the role of Shakunthala justified her character in emotional and romantic scenes and finally she deserves an appreciation for accepting a mythological role in modern times.
Dev Mohan’s screen presence and charishma will definitely take him to newer heights in his career.
Mohan Babu as usual perfectly fits into his mythological character and teh interval sequence works well with the veteran actor’s introduction.
Allu Arha, the little champ and Allu’s scion is undoubtedly stands as one of the biggest assets for this mythological drama.
Minus Points :
The actual story does not have more scope in the film and making a feature film doesn’t seems to be a great idea from the makers part. Talented actors like Subbaraju, Jisshu Sen Gupta, Gautami and Harish Uthaman characters were simpy wasted in cameo roles as the scope is comparatively low for their characters.
The movie has been made with poor vfx standards and the audience who watched the film are of the opinion that wy teh makers have opted for 3D release with this kind of VFX.
The narration moves on a slow pace and the audience find harder to connect with the scenes.
Finally the war scenes are said to be the biggest minus for the film
Shakunthalam is a mythological drama that failed to impress the audience with underrated vfx and extra added scenes in the film.
overall rating 1.5/5.