Have you ever wanted to watch a film that has action, emotion, romance, family drama, villainy and a social interest? If so, you might want to check this out. Yuddham has all of these things, and - here's the best part - it has all of these things separately. So, you have an action track that has very little to do with the family melodrama, which has very little to do with the romance, which has very little to do with the villainy... and so on, and so forth. If that isn't the most exciting development in cinema in the recent times, then we don't know what is.
Still trying to figure out how the whole thing works? Well, first there is Shankar Anna (Sri Hari) who is the local Robin Hood, but with the kind of grave magnetism that only Sri Hari knew how to pull off. Anyway, he saved the land of an old age home from going into the unscrupulous hands of the land mafia. How? By speechifying the owners of the land into compliance. Literally. So, that's the social interest part.
Now the mafia lord is after Shankar Anna's hide, but the only way to get at him is through his sister Madhu (Yami Gauthami). There's the villainy bit taken care of.
Now, Madhu is slowly falling for Rishi (Tarun), the State students' union leader and resident avenging angel. One of the methods of courtship he uses is a mock kidnap wherein he spends 20 mins with a knife held at her throat. Romantic much?
Meanwhile, Rishi's NRI brother takes one look at Madhu, and unbeknownst to Madhu, Rishi, Rishi's brother and Madhu's bother; the two get engaged. Rishi's brother and Madhu, that is. And what is unbeknownst is as follows - Rishi's brother doesn't know that the girl he likes and gets engaged to is Madhu, who Rishi is in love with. Rishi doesn't know that the girl he tries so hard to get his brother engaged to is Madhu. Madhu's brother doesn't know Madhu and Rishi are in love with each other. And, as is usual in such cases, Madhu doesn't know that she's engaged in the first place. We challenge you to find a more intricate family tangle than that.
As far as the action is concerned, this is a posthumous treasure left by Sri Hari. You cannot possibly imagine that there'll be any skimping on the rolling heads. If you can't figure out why Shankar Anna's driver would let Madhu go off in a strange car, or why the villain Nagineedu (as if Nagineedu needs another name to sound villainous!) hired something so moronic as to try to ravish the girl before handing her over to Nagineedu, or how Rishi finds out where the ravishment is to happen - considering that he didn't even know who took the girl, or why there were so many filthy songs where there shouldn't be any - well, we have nothing but sympathy for your baffled mind, but it is your own fault for daring to figure them out in the first place.
Tarun looks quite charming with his extra pounds. Yami Gautami is pretty, and suits the role. The rest of the characters are as they ought to be. But, quite honestly, this utterly ridiculous film belongs to Tarun and Srihari and their flying fists. Oh, and to Srihari's booming voice, which Gautami makes use of so charmingly while convincing her brother to let her go for a college trip (although... hmmm... now that we think about it, we have seen the scene before - Jab Pyaar Kiya Tho Darna Kya ring a few bells?).
The production values are quite mediocre, although the music videos are a most unique kind of fun.
Whether or not this is a good movie is debatable. However, we are convinced that you should watch Yuddham in quite the same way as that everyone should get robbed once in their lifetime, or get drunk to the gills and then vomit them out, or get groped by someone of their own gender - just one of those ambiguous life experiences without which life isn't quite rounded off.