The Darshan and director Om Prakash Rao combination has been quite successful in the past. So it is with great anticipation that we await their latest Kannada release Yodha, which is a remake of the Tamil hit film Bose.
So how does Yodha fare? Let's take a look.
Captain Ram is a commando who rescues Patil, Karnataka's Tourism Minister from a fake kidnap operation in Delhi. Liking his heroics, Patil hires the captain as his own security man. While on duty, Ram rescues a dancer Asha from being raped by the minister. In the process he shoots the minister. To save the honour of the girl, Ram does not reveal the details in the military court marshal, which leads to his sacking from the army. The enraged minister wants to kill Ram who has now returned to his family in Bangalore. Will the minister succeed?
The film's main strength is its rich production values. Cinematography by KM Vishnuvardhan is wonderful. Darshan's larger than life image has been properly used in the action sequences. Om Prakash also makes sure that the film's heroine Nikitha looks absolutely fabulous, especially in the four songs. The dialogues too carry lot of punch. The narrative of the first twenty minutes is fast paced.
However, the film hits a snag in the second half where the hero's brawl with the city rowdies takes centre stage. Watching several action sequences may appeal to a section of the audience, but it is not for everyone.
Hamsalekha has also done little to give some relief to the audience in the form of his background music or songs. The quality of the songs is certainly a few notches below Darshan's earlier films like Gaja, Indra and even Navagraha.
To be fair, Om Prakash Rao has made some changes in the film like including references to Afzal Guru's hanging, the Mangalore Pub attack and many other recent incidents. But that does not gel with his narration and dialogues which seem to represent the ideas expressed by one political party in the elections.
As far as performances go, Darshan knows how to please his fans. His dialogue delivery, action somersaults and fights will definitely please his fans. Nikitha looks fabulous throughout the film. She is good in a couple of comedy sequences too. Ashish Vidyarthi is okay while Sreenivasa Murthy excels in a few sequences that are written for him. Sadhu Kokila's comedy on the other hand is quite irritating.
Though Yodha has its failings, it is still enjoyable.