By Troy Ribeiro
Film: “Baahubali 2: The Conclusion”; Director: S. S. Rajamouli; Cast: Prabhas Raju, Rana Daggubati, Ramya Krishnan, Anushka Shetty, Tamannaah Bhatia, Nasser, Charandeep, Satya Raj, Prabhakar, Rakesh Varre, Rohini, Tanikella Bharani, Teja Kakumanu; Rating: ***1/2
Why did Kattapa kill Baahubali? This perennial question that haunted those who have seen “Baahubali: The Beginning” will now be rested. Director S.S. Rajamouli does answer this question and offers much more in “Baahubali 2: The Conclusion”, which is an action-packed revenge drama.
For the uninitiated, Baahubali is the story of an orphan prince Amarendra Baahubali and his son Mahendra Baahubali in the Kingdom of Maheshmati. While the first edition concentrated on Amarendra being unaware of his identity, the Conclusion takes off from where the first part ended and delves deeper into the life of Amarendra Baahubali, the father of Mahendra Baahubali the child who was dramatically saved in the opening shots of the earlier film.
Narrated in a melodramatic manner with surreal action sequences and epic battle scenes along with plenty of dilemmas and betrayals, it is Amarendra’s tale that is interestingly gripping as it answers the question of why Kattapa killed Baahubali.
The final act of The Conclusion, which concentrates on Mahendra’s story seems like a rushed job. And with a run time of 167 minutes, the film eventually seems to drag.
On the performance front, with dramatic lines and over-the-top acts, every actor performs his part earnestly. With an imposing, yet tender personality, Sathyaraj as Kattapa, the loyal warrior, is impressive. Prabhas Raju in a dual role is charming as Amarendra and sincere as Mahendra Baahubali.
Rana Daggubati excels as the vicious Bhalladeva. But it is Nassar as the scheming Bijjala Deva, father of Bhalladeva, who steals the thunder from Rana.
Ramya Krishnan as the Rajmata Sivagami along with Anushka Shetty as Devasena — Amarendra’s wife — offer a stimulating performance. Tamannaah Bhatia as Avantika, Mahendra’s love interest, in a miniscule role has nothing much to offer.
On the technical front, like its prequel, this film too is at par with any big ticket Hollywood caper, in terms of its mounting. Visually the film is colossal and monumentally spectacular. In fact, it is a bit better than the previous edition in terms of VFX effects and sharper edits. The action sequences too are artistically and aesthetically choreographed. The music and background score by MM Kreem add to the cinematic experience.
Unfortunately the dubbing in Hindi is not up to the mark.
Overall, this concluding part of Baahubali will appeal to you, irrespective of whether you have seen The Beginning.