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Athanu Review

Can watch again
Good for kids
Good for dates
Wait to rent it
When short of ideas, borrow from others or use standard ones. When you have a particularly bad product at hand, and know it, promote it like hell. Melodrama and heavy dialogues always work with Telugu audiences. This movie is an amalgam of these and more such philosophies and then goes on to create some of its own.

Atanu gives the impression of a glorious film when you read all those previews splashed in the newspapers. It has got a great storyline, the film's makers brag. Which is about an innocent guy caught in the crossfire of extremists and the police. But when the curtains go up, what you see instead are the silly antics of a group of college guys that you have seen in umpteen films now.

The four guys - Kiran, Harsha, Pramod and Ravi - after singing songs and making fun of a couple of girls in the college, decide to 'patao' their neighbor and teacher, Rachana. So, till the interval we see these guys dreaming and outdoing each other to impress Rachana. Till one day one of them, the youngest, actually tries to push himself on her. Realizing their intentions, she turns physical (and how) and teaches them a lesson.

Disgusted by Rachana's behavior, the guys bide their time to strike at her. They get their opportunity when she is arrested for having sheltered a criminal on the run.

When the guys start making fun of her, a stung Rachana decides to reveal her antecedents. And it goes like this: Rachana is the daughter of an industrialist P J Sharma, who owns half the businesses in the State. She falls in love with Sai Kumar, an orphan and an 'awaara' who does nothing but teach wayward guys to behave. And yes, resort to fisticuffs with them in the process. After wooing Sai Kumar with great difficulty, Rachana finally marries him.

And on the day of their nuptials, three dreaded extremists running from the police seek refuge in their house. Two of them are killed, while the third escapes. The police take Sai to be an extremist sympathizer and put him behind bars. When Rachana goes to bring him out on bail, she is told that he was not arrested at all. Whether he is able to come out of his imprisonment alive forms the narration of the remaining part of the film.

Director Satyam Babu unabashedly borrows bits and pieces from a couple of movies, which simply doesn't work. Sai Kumar doesn't lip those emotional dialogues for a change. But that doesn't mean he is silent in the film. He has his share of rattling dialogues, although, thankfully, in a much-controlled manner. Rachana, who plays the pivotal role of the lady trying to move heaven and earth to find the whereabouts of her husband, fails to impress. The college scenes are stereotyped and uninteresting. And so is the comedy, essayed by the trio of Brahmanandam, L B Sriram and Kovai Sarala.

Badly made, with an inapt script, this flick should be given as wide a berth as possible. Whatever is passable, has already been seen many times over, thanks to heavy promotion all over the telly.
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