METRO PLUS

Only mass appeal

Nagarjuna in this remake of the Kevin Costner starrer `Message in a Bottle.'

Nagarjuna in this remake of the Kevin Costner starrer `Message in a Bottle.'  

Sivamani 98480 22338 (Telugu) Cast: Nagarjuna, Rakshita, Asin, Prakashraj Direction: Puri Jagannath Music: Chakri

WITH THREE consecutive hits in his kitty generationext director Puri Jagannath has generated enough pre-release excitement for Sivamani 9848... It's no news that he tries to be different -- starting from the selection of title to the treatment of the story. Such is his confidence on his abilities as a director that he doesn't mind casting a nobody and yet succeeding in hitting the jackpot. However, this time, he has a mass hero Nagarjuna and glam dolls Rakshita and Asin and a seemingly good plot - yet - he flounders on his script and the outcome is not what one expects of Puri Jagannath.

The story revolves around two lovers and a managing editor who swears to unite the lovers.

Pallavai (Rakshita) who is the managing editor of a newspaper comes across a bottle on the beach. (this sprightly editor has the weird habit of jogging along with her elderly news-editor). The bottle contains a note which is written by a girl for her lover whose name is Sivamani. The editor finds a new serial story for her paper and orders the news editor to start a column even as she packs her bags to Kochi to unravel the mystery. Soon she comes across Sivamani bashing up the baddies. She tries to get closer to him but he spurns her advances. Then she befriends his friend and gets the story.

Sivamani, prior to his Kochi sojourn, was an upright police inspector in Vizag. He gives his cell number to the residents near his police station and tells them to call him whenever necessary and that is how the cell number gets popular more than the hero. He comes across Vasantha (Asin), a singer and falls for her and her voice. Now Vasantha is in Vizag for a short break and has to return to Kochi . Meanwhile Sivamani confronts a local goonda (who is distantly related to Vasantha) and takes him to court, who is in turn, ordered to leave the State for his crimes. Sivamani's mother takes ill and Vasantha suggests they go to Kochi for treatment. The two sing on the exotic beaches while the mother gets treated. However, the goonda who is back in Kochi, sees the two together informs Vasantha's father. They attack Sivamani and tie him up in a remote beach and take away Vasantha. At this point Vasantha leaves the message in a bottle for Sivamani which Pallavi finds on the beach after two years... Nagarjuna is apt as Sivamani. He can give any upcoming stars a run for their money with his well-maintained physique and acting prowess. Rakshita and Asin look glamorous, while Chakri's music is good in parts, especially the song Mona Mona. Photography by Shyam K Naidu is breathtaking. Given his track record, Puri could have done better. If his earlier films like Amma Nanna o Tamil Ammayi had a touch of class, Sivamani has a touch of mass.

G. MANJULA KUMAR

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