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New-age actresses wasted in insipid roles

New-age actresses wasted in insipid roles
Highlights

Actress Ritu Varma, who gave a solid performance in ‘Pellichoopulu’ and won awards for her role; looked uninspired, bland and insipid in her next outing, Sudhir Varma’s ‘Keshava’.

Actress Ritu Varma, who gave a solid performance in ‘Pellichoopulu’ and won awards for her role; looked uninspired, bland and insipid in her next outing, Sudhir Varma’s ‘Keshava’. Varma, who made a taut thriller failed to write a solid character for the female lead. Moreover, if there was any shortfall in the movie, it was the love story between the lead pair; it looked contrived and never convincing.

The issue with ‘Keshava’ is not one off; it plagues all Telugu movies, as actress seldom gets author-backed roles. The idea among writers and directors to make female lead strong is to make them quirky. However, the word quirky has all together a new definition in Tollywood. It means loud, over-the-top and to the point of being annoying.

Take for example Rakul Preet Singh’s role of Brahmarambha in ‘Rarandoi Veduka Chuddam’, the character starts on a loud note and quickly turns to that of nagging and annoying kind. Does this sound any familiar? Remember Genelia D’Souza from ‘Orange’, it is all the same.

Director Indraganti Mohan Krishna, who penned a solid female character for Nivetha Thomas in ‘Gentleman’, failed to follow suit. In this recent comic caper ‘Ami Thumi’, the female leads – Eesha and Aditi Myakal - are loud and over the top, thanks to lack of appropriate screen time, the audience are spared.

If we take a closer look at the characterisations of the female leads in the recent films, they are either submissive and subdued or loud and annoying. Moreover, they are so caricaturish that they remain incapable of taking their own life decisions.

Telugu films writers and directors are so obsessed with melodrama and bent on extolling the virtues of family leave the decisions in the hands of either the female lead’s father, cue most movies post ‘Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge’.

Rarely, we see a really strong and author-backed role for female lead in the movies. ‘Pellichoopulu’ was back in 2016, it has been six months into 2017 and we are still waiting.

By Aditya Parankusam

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