Jai Telangana is perhaps the most solid of all Telangana-oriented films that have recently hit the theatres. It does not have the aesthetic finesse of a Rajanna
(in fact, far from it), but it has the depth of "subject matter" that Rajanna did not.
Jai Telangana is also a film with the most dedicated, vilest anti-Seemandhra agenda of them all. This anti-Seemandhra attitude in the movie is so strong and so direct it can be termed slander, but for the fact that it backs up its insults with bits and pieces of information.
Again, these "facts" are those that are picked and seen from a conveniently biased point of view, so don't expect to walk into a fair and balanced panel discussion on "the benefits of smaller states". There's no real perspective here - just a lot focused pandering to a popular sentiment.
Combine its clarity of purpose with the unconventional way in which Jai Telangana chooses to present its opinion, and you have a film that connects if you agree with it. If the cause doesn't appeal to you, this movie will not. And that also has a lot to do with the sub-standard production values of the movie.
The plot is set in Yamalokam, where rogue businessmen from Rayalaseema and Andhra (the names of both regions being beeped out frequently) are being tried for their sins. Also in hell are the young men and women who committed suicides in the Telangana agitation. The movie basically says that even in the presence of Yama, the crooks from Seemandhra would stoop to any level to cheat the people of Telangana.
The first half of the movie describes in (sometimes graphic) detail how poverty abounds in Telangana, and how farmers, weavers and several other communities are being driven to suicide. The satire comes in post-interval, with the writers even bringing in AP's former chief ministers from the dead.
There are likely to be plenty of things you wouldn't agree with, like how the film makes no effort towards thinking of a practical solution to the Telangana problem, and how it makes mass suicides look like a way to get a separate state formed.
It has an interesting concept, but Jai Telangana would have been better off as a staged play or on television. The movie's first half is narrated in documentary-style, and the second half is quite like the political spoofs that news channels use as fillers. It's basically frill-free movie-making - even the visuals seem like someone with basic video editing skills decided to make a whole film.
The performances are quite good, actually, and the actors, most of whom are unknown faces, have the sincerity reflective of the way in which the movie wants to present itself. The music is earthy - not in the cinematically polished way that Vandemataram Srinivas brings to his folk tunes, but in the way real on-street song-and-dance would sound.
Like we said, it might strike a chord if you're in the mood for some Seemandhra-bashing, but otherwise, wait to catch it on TV.