Art & Culture

We love Mahesh Babu even if Brahmotsavam is terrible

Mona Ramavat
Mona RamavatMay 24, 2016 | 09:40

We love Mahesh Babu even if Brahmotsavam is terrible

Now, this is what makes us fall in love with Mahesh Babu. Again and again. And even if the film that revolves around him turns out to be a complete mess.

Just when we thought we got over Mr Perfection in Srimanthudu, he casts the same good boy, great son spell on us in last Friday's big release, Brahmotsavam; the said goodness only raising a few notches in this too convenient fairy tale of a setting for our man.

In Srimanthudu.

Going by the reception of the film despite the bad reviews, it is proved that no matter what, a family saga featuring big weddings, humble beginnings and some clichéd hand-pounding of turmeric on the terrace by a dozen aunts can't go out of vogue that easily.

And before we know it, we are honey-trapped into watching till the end how Mahesh Babu goes about winning hearts - those of a dizzying number of uncles and cousins besides millions on the other side of the screen.

Not surprisingly, a flurry of women too weave in and out of his life, enamoured first and heartbroken or disillusioned eventually; the quality of their love being consistently unconditional, though.

He charms and humours like Raj Malhotra of DDLJ, is devoted to his father like Rahul Raichand of K3G and borrows the art of sorting familial differences from, well, the Barjatyas.

In Businessman.

But there are no life-threatening moments in the path of love, nor any difficult decisions because of which he is torn between his father's approval and whatever else.

He either smiles (that disarming number that melts your heart or knees depending on your age and gender) or doesn't. And in between these two lies his life experience in entirety.


In Brahmotsavam, Mahesh Babu is so good; he doesn't shed a tear, or raise his voice. But he fights the baddies, lest the fans go back feeling just a bit cheated. That again is accomplished with utter grace and just the sort of bruise on the hand that can soften the most embittered extended family member.

It's all perfection and devotion to the idea of the perfect family. A family where a son will fetch his father's slippers and place them before his feet ceremoniously or help his perfectly healthy mother tie her sneaker laces at an outdoorsy vacation.

So much goodness in one man ceases to be goodness and turns to god-ness and therefore nauseous. But then again, there's probably something terribly magnetic about this man that we forgive somehow, knowing that the character we are seeing him play is flawed, which has nothing to do with him per se.

The compulsive empath he played in Srimanthudu was received with something like reverence by fans, despite his Buddha-like need for renunciation tilting more towards impractical and contrived that worked. Maybe this too shall pass.

We yearn though, for a helping of the bad now, like his character from Pokiri or some of that ruthlessness (albeit ultra sophisticated) from Businessman and the humane shades of turbulence from his acclaimed performance in the psycho-thriller, 1: Nennokadine.

In 1: Nennokadine. 

There are, after all, so many more shades to Mahesh Babu, going far beyond the pristine white of his blazer we see him don obediently as his mother's choice, in Brahmotsavam.

Last updated: May 25, 2016 | 13:19
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