Love is a cure for hopelessness. What if that very love lands you in a hopeless situation? Will you sacrifice your love or your life? Sapta Sagaradache Ello (Beyond the Seven Seas) delves into this complex territory of intense romance and emotional dilemmas. Director Hemanth Rao deftly handles the emotions at play as Manu (Rakshit Shetty) and Priya (Rukmini Vasanth) build their castles in the air above their poverty-stricken lives.
But before they can construct the foundations beneath these dreams, the ground beneath their lives gives way. A Faustian bargain sets Manu on a path of no return. The fabric of love is stretched and tested to its limit. Since there is a ‘Side B’ to this two-part film, we will have to wait for the next part to know the result. But it is not too hard to guess.
There is no dearth of neatly described characters with their own personalities surrounding Manu and Priya’s world. The subtle characterization of these roles is quite amazing. The narrative, which sticks to minimal realism, is hell-bent on pulling at the heartstrings. Everything is entertaining and picture-perfect till the interval. It is subsequently that the reality of how thin the story is spread becomes evident.
The tightly woven story gives way to a post-interval narration that is brittle. The realistic portrayal of the court rooms and jails which commercial films usually romanticize, comes as a surprising revelation at first. But their overuse is tiresome after a point, especially in the second half. The reality of how slow court trials are is not common knowledge and the film succeeds in showing how slow life really is.
The biggest drawback of Side A is the absence of something like a “Why Kattappa killed Bahubali” question at the end. Without an impending surprise, Side B is not quite the thing to eagerly anticipate.
Despite these inevitable downsides, Side A is still a good watch, drawing you into the personal lives of its characters and revealing why some people are the way they are. Rukmini Vasanth and Ramesh Indira give standout performances as the lovelorn damsel in distress and an evil incarnate respectively. SSE is a technically flawless film which could have been better paced.
Film: Sapta Sagaradache Ello Side A
Director: Hemanth Rao
Cast: Rakshit Shetty, Rukmini Vasanth, Achyuth Kumar, Pavithra Lokesh, Sharath Lohitashva, Ramesh Indira
Duration: 142 minutes