Story: Konda, an action-biography drama helmed by maverick filmmaker Ram Gopal Varma aka RGV , narrates the story of real-life political couple Konda Murali and Surekha. Murali is a youngster with loyalty, commitment, and values. In the face of injustice, he doesn’t hold back and gives it back in full. His parents ask him to move to Warangal when Murali takes things into his hands and punishes an influential local in the village. He then proceeds to Warangal and joins Lal Bahadur College. How did Murali go from being a responsible student to a wanted criminal by police? What roles did Surekha and RK play in Murali’s journey? How Murali and Surekha dodge their opposition and rise in ranks should be watched on the big screen.
Review: ‘A work of art is an exaggeration’ - André Gide
Konda begins with a profound voiceover by RGV quoting Karl Marx and sets a revolutionary tone for the movie. Everything about this movie is loud, raw and intense - exaggerated emotions, voices of babies crying, telephones ringing, blood splattered on faces. Murali (Thrigun), a youngster who seems to have imbibed the revolutionary ideology, wants to change society. Upon the advice of his mother (Tulasi Shivamani) and father (LB Sriram), Murali moves to Warangal to pursue his education at Lal Bahadur College. He spends time in the library acquiring knowledge about freedom and the constitution. Already driven by his penchant for justice, Murali finds a friend in RK (Prashanth Karthi), known in the circle for revolutionary thoughts, poetry and philosophy. Parallelly, Murali gets bowled over by his junior Surekha ( Irra Mor ), a bold and beautiful girl who arrives at college on a scooter (we are talking 80s). Certain scenes in the college, background music and the song during the college cultural program will send the audience back in time and remind them of the director’s hit film, Nagarjuna-starred Siva. While most actors did a commendable job, some performances and supporting characters in the background begged for refinement. While embracing the theatre-style narration, lip-sync has gone out of sync in some scenes.
The director used the street theatre-style screenplay for narrating and delivering message-oriented scenes, a sort-after medium used by yesteryear revolutionaries to awaken the masses. The rest of the movie recounts Murali’s journey of becoming a people’s leader, a wanted criminal, and an inspirational husband. The director’s homework on the lives of the popular couple from Warangal was quite evident in the screenplay and narration. LB Sriram, Tulasi, Prudhvi Raj, Prashant Karthi, Parvathi Arun, Abhilash Chaudhary, and others played important roles in this biography. Performances by the lead characters were intense, and narration was loud and raw from the word go. Music by DSR Balaji, cinematography by Malhar Bhatt Joshi and editing by Manish Takur works well but nothing special to rave about. This action-biography drama is a typical RGV offering and will appeal to audiences who liked his earlier biography dramas.
- Paul Nicodemus