Thaayi, Prof Baragooru Ramachandrappa's new Kannada film is an adaptation of Russian Author Maxim Gorky's novel Mother written a hundred years ago. Barogooru who has written the script, dialogues and the lyrics has taken liberties in changing the backdrop of the story to suit Indian conditions.
The director, who is a well known leftist ideologue, has taken the struggle of workers in a globalised economy as the main focus. Yet many of the incidents are similar to that of Gorky's novel and some of the characters in the film relate well to the characters portrayed in the novel.
The impact of the story has been dwarfed by a casual narrative approach. The lyrics and dialogues spew venom on the uncompromising capitalistic class and Baragooru goes overboard while slamming the corrupt politician- police officer nexus.
As in the Russian novel, the protagonist Thayavva is an illiterate poor woman like Palagea Nilovna. Her son Raju is the backbone of a revolutionary struggle. Like Pavel in the Russian Novel, Raju fights against the oppression of the working class by company owners. But the ruthless combination of a corrupt police officer and the ruling class crush the protests of Raju and his friends. Raju is hanged after a mock trial. Then the mother decides to carry forward the movement started by her son. Her journey to seek truth is backed by many poor people who rally around the determined mother.
Baragooru has been able to extract good performances from all the cast. Prameela Joshai's role of a mother is her career best. Kumar Govind has also been able to deliver a good performance. Sreenivasa Murthy excels in his small role.
Hamsalekha's musical score and excellent background score are the other highlights of the film though visually, it remains an average fare.