Yaman Review, What’s Behind: Vijay Anthony is slowly gaining the ground in Tollywood, thanks to his immaculate story, script selection. After a blockbuster ‘Bichagadu’ and below average ‘Bethaludu,’ here comes the political thriller ‘Yaman’ released in Telugu, Tamil simultaneously. Let’s see how Vijay Anthony played the clever political game in review.
Yaman Story: Devarakonda Gandhi (Vijay Anthony) is killed by his own close friend Pandu when Gandhi is selected as next MLA contestant. Later on Pandu (Arun Jothy) becomes a Minister and Gandhi’s son Ashoka Chakravarthy (Vijay Anthony)’s life also leads him into politics with backing from opposition party Ex-MLA Karunakar (Thyagarajan). In parallel, Ashoka Chakravarthy also falls in love with actress Ahalya (Miya George) and marries her. What’s the game of political wits between Ashoka Chakravarthy and Karunakar, Pandu, who won and who lost their lives is the rest of gripping narrative.
Yaman Artists and Technicians: To start off, political thrillers are a rarity in South Cinema because commercial success is elusive for this genre. Yet, the recent Dhanush’s outing ‘Dharma Yogi’ was encouraging and now is ‘Yaman.’ Story by Jeeva Shankar is definitely interesting with lot of mind games, backstabbing reflecting contemporary political scenario to connect with. However, he was lethargic at screenplay because excessive runtime of 150+ minutes with overtly-dragged episodes bought in dryness. On direction and cinematography front, Jeeva Shankar succeeded in establishing a much needed political mood into actual story telling process which made audience to sit attentive. Dialogues are cleverly written and have got immense depth in meaning to reflect the understanding and insights needed to succeed in politics. As a music director Vijay Anthony’s main score in songs isn’t impressive but BGM is fine. Veera Senthil Raj’s editing is blunt. Production standards from Miryala Ravinder Reddy and LYCO are appreciatory.
Onto performances, Vijay Anthony maintained his brand of surprising script selection. As there’s less of action and more of word play in driving emotions, Vijay Anthony was required to grab lot of screen space. In contrast to his last couple of films, he acted more with a sustained intensity in eyes. Now and then, he becomes a super hero beating the goons but overall Vijay Anthony played to his strengths in a dignified character. Miya George is beautiful and authentic as actress, house wife. Thyagarajan’s body language, screen presence is captivating. Arul Jothy’s character etching is superb and leaves a long lasting impact. Among the rest of artists, we have more of new Tamil faces.
Yaman Rating Analysis: Every time when Tamil directors come up with a new story element, it offers a motivating environment for South cinema aspirants. ‘Yaman’ falls into the same mould which has contemporary flavored political plot (something like Prasthanam) with deeply involving artists. Jeeva Shankar being the writer, cameraman and director of the film, he was aware of every nook and corner in the story. This resulted in a functional mood creation from where the entire political setting looked enthralling and realistic.
First half starts off with Gandhi murder and growing up of Ashoka Chakravarthy. In the process of ascending the political ladder, every step and every meeting he takes up had a hidden motive with a clever back connection. Story although moves at snail pace, it established a requisite state of mind to stick on. Of course, placement of songs was a blunder diluting the essence. Towards interval, every character gains its own significance setting a high temper for second half.
In the later half too, ‘Yaman’ speedometer is struck to one point. Ashoka Chakravarthy taking head on conflict with Pandu and the smart play with mentor Karunakaran are well dealt. In parallel, Ashoka Chakravarthy grandfather’s death and marriage with Ahalya move things forward. The hallmark political betrayal thread wherein Pandu, Karunakaran plotting for Ashoka Chakravarthy’s murder are potential leads to climax.
Bottom line is, ‘Yaman’ is a clean product in an odd political thriller genre. Despite a strong content and formidable artistic excellence, extremely time eating and slow unfurling of story test the audience patience. Commercial verdict aside, CJ goes with 2.5 stars for ‘Yaman’ and it’s a safe one time watch.
Yaman CineDhol Verdict: Intriguing, Slow Paced Political Thriller
Yaman CineDhol Rating: 2.5/5.0
Reviewed by Srivaas