“Wow!” must have been the initial reaction of everyone who heard the single-line plot of “Baanadaariyalli.” However, director Preetham Gubbi has horrendously stretched this intriguing concept into a 149.42-minute ordeal.
Even with the presence of Rukmini Vasanth, the first half of the film leaves an excruciating pain on the brain that no amount of popcorn during the intermission can cure.
The inexplicable mistake of delaying the actual story until after the interval is persistently adhered to, ultimately robbing the audience of any interest in watching the African safari unfold. The film ultimately ends up as a poor cousin of “Dr Bro’s” travel videos.
A boy effortlessly captures the girl’s heart, but she presents him with the challenge of winning her father’s affections as well. Initially indifferent, the boy finds himself embarking on this unexpected journey in the face of lousily written cinematic circumstances. This is the crux of the second half of the film, while the first half remains an enigmatic puzzle of confusion.
The lazy writing and the convenient compromises are glaringly apparent throughout the film. From the girl conveniently handing over her diary for the boy to read, to the story writer’s oversight of the fact that wild animals can also be found closer to home in Bandipur and Nagarahole forests, these instances highlight the missing attempts at creativity.
In an effort to incorporate African settings, the plot of the film has been stretched to its illogical limits, resulting in a thin storyline. This decision to showcase Africa predominantly in the second half also comes at the expense of a coherent screenplay.
The film does have its small mercies; the natural and charming chemistry between Ganesh and Rukmini is truly endearing. Arjun Janya’s music evokes distant melodies and provides a soothing backdrop. Maasti’s dialogues often serve as the saving grace of the film. However, these positive aspects can only do so much to compensate for the film’s overall lack of structural integrity.
Movie: Baanadaariyalli Director: Preetham Gubbi Cast: Ganesh, Rukmini Vasanth, Rangayanan Raghu, Reeshma Nanaiah Duration: 149 minutes Certificate: UA