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Showing posts from August, 2011

Megabirthday 2011: Puli Bebbuli

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There are certain people who could ask me to jump off a cliff and I would probably do it. So when BLB favorite Temple of Cinema Chaat put out the call for posts in honor of Chiranjeevi's birthday, an activity far less objectionable—and probably far more glitter-encrusted—than jumping off a cliff, I enlisted right away. Then I realized I don't own any Chiranjeevi films. And don't even know much about them other than what I have read on Temple's blog. And have personal experience with him only through song after amazing song, a selection of which you can see at the Masala Zindabad podcast page for the interview we did with Temple back in June. However, I am not one to be deterred from filmi fun by something so trivial as a lack of knowledge, and I set about trying to find the perfect Chiranjeevi film to write about. Several people suggested Aradhana, but I am too new in the field of Megastudies to appreciate subtlety such as that. Bring on the sequins, I say! …

Nag Panchami Film Fessssstival: Anaganaga O Dheerudu (Once Upon a Warrior)

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A basic but gorgeously dressed fairy tale of evil queen, savior child, and guardian, Anaganaga O Dheerudu has splashes of Drona (weird villain stopped by a guy with shaggy hair and a sword after passing through many trials), Magadheera (shaggy-haired sword-swinger is in name the protector but in execution the hero; grand CGI architecture; villains in scary headgear), Dharam Veer(costumes evocative of many cultures and time periods but specific to none; eagle-themed architecture), and even Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (creepy priests with scary rituals and red marks on their bald heads). But not, interestingly, any significant traces of snake films, as far as I could tell, despite being by far the most snake-filled film I've ever seen.

Because it's the theme du jour, let's start with those snakes, which in this film manifest themselves in sets and costumes rather than in dance or characterization. If there were an award for best use of snakes in visual…