When Lady Amitabh romances the Megastar!

When Lady Amitabh romances the Megastar!

‘Gang Leader’ is a Chiranjeevi film which was released in 1991, still a year away from his all-time grosser ‘Gharana Mogudu’. His career, by then 13...

Chiranjeevi with Vijayashanthi in ' Gang Leader '‘Gang Leader’ is a Chiranjeevi film which was released in 1991, still a year away from his all-time grosser ‘Gharana Mogudu’.

His career, by then 13 years old studded with 115 releases , many of them huge hits, had began plateauing , notwithstanding the hits that followed till a year or two later.

A very typical crime thriller directed by Vijaya Bapineedu, this flick was a smasher of many records for Chiru who earned the sobriquet ‘Megastar’ after its thunderous performance at the BO.

Vijayashanti, who had more than 110 multi-lingual films released to her credit by then in a career of a decade, played his heroine in the film.

By then she had starred in 17 films with Chiru in eight years, making them one of the hottest and popular pairs in Telugu cinema. Interestingly, Vijayashanti managed to ride two horses as a heroine in two different genres of cinema back then- the social message oriented ones as also one where she had to look glamorous. No prizes for guessing in which category this film falls in!

Bappi Lahiri, who was already popular with the Telugu film music lovers was roped in for this big banner project, fetching him the Filmfare Award for Best Music Director. Of course, all the songs he composed for this film were audio hits, two of them evergreen, including its title number.

The half-beat tempo of the percussion as the camera takes a wide-angled view of the junior artistes sets the pace for this song which begins as “Bhadrachalam konda, Seetammavari dhanda”….by the one and only SP Balasubrahmanyam. What attracts the viewer, is the sheer energy levels the young pair bring in into the action-packed duet, if it can be described thus.

A strange headgear laden crowd of men and women match their steps as Chiru and Vijayashanti go about their moves fluidly. The currently top notch film director Prabhu Deva, then an upcoming choreographer makes the hero and heroine fall about, landing on their bottoms in a strangely awkward dance movement, which is executed effortlessly. Meanwhile, the junior artistes hold colourful props and go about their business as the high-pitched chorus sustains the speed of the song.

Lahiri’s song touches a new scale, after the first two minutes, as he waltzes into his familiar territory, a musical mélange of sharp violin stringing, the percussion instrument gradually raising the crescendo.

The dance moves are easy, relaxed and both the lovey- dovey types move around in an assured, comfortable manner. Not for long, as Prabhu Deva makes them repeat the partial calisthenics once again, done without much sweat in any case by both!

The by now Telugu film trademark of huge pots and pans and giant size props of random music instruments makes an appearance as Chiru and Vijayashanti do a puppet move for a brief while before resuming their moves with gusto. A special note to SPB who is unflagging with his tone which dips and twists as the song progresses smoothly.

Of course, Chitra is equally adept at giving him the vocal chase and she does not disappoint her fans. One notable point is that despite being a five-minute long number, the song just about plays up the macho quotient as the hero rides a horse into the final moments and as the scene turns chaotically colourful, envelops his heroine in a bear hug. Super song, this!

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