Leading a transformation is not easy

Leading a transformation is not easy

Kaddipudi
Kannada (U/A)
Director: Soori
Cast: Shivarajkumar, Radhika Pandit and others

There are three types of rowdies, according to ACP Sathyamurthy (Anant Nag). The first type rules others while enjoying a stint behind bars. The second arrives with a big bang into the underworld, usually by killing or maiming some “big fish”. The third one, however, wants to shun violence for all purposes and is keen on leading a respectable life. 

Sathyamurthy tells newbie Inspector Tejaswi to focus on rehabilitation and not elimination, citing the story of rowdy Anand alias Kaddipudi (Shivarajkumar)...Soori revels in exposing the vile underbelly of a city, town or it could be any habitation for that matter! The director ferrets out unimaginable, yet believable horrors with almost devilish relish to leave the audience with a lingering sense of disquiet and discomfort. Crime, like love, is an over-rich source and Soori doesn’t hesitate to mine it again and again. It is left to the viewer to decide whether to adjust himself to a new “reality” purported by a fantasy-giver or grow out of it into someone responsible and contributing to the society. 

In Kaddipudi, the focus is on the third type of rowdy who wants to reform but is not allowed to by those who are determined to use him for their ends. Does he manage to break these shackles and succeed in leading a life free of violence, of stratagem and of fear and pain is what Kaddipudi presents before an ever-adoring audience.

 Most of the seetis and waah-waahs are reserved for Shivanna, be it the dialogues or his now-almost-patented way of wielding the longu. But actor Shivanna comes to the fore in a few scenes (after his best friend’s barbaric killing). 

An assured Radhika looks her part, coming into her own towards the climax beautifully. But Soori disappoints big time with Aindrita Ray. Her effervescence, like Harshitha Poonacha’s in Jackie gets buried after her introductory song; it could have been a beautiful sub-plot but Soori is content to let go of the opportunity while toying with the main track of the screenplay along with Rajesh Nataranga who also puts in a neat performance. 

Rangayana Raghu, Sharath Lohitashwa and even an on-the-rebound-from sickness Renuka Prasad are all adequate while Anant Nag acts as Shivanna’s conscience keeper and Avinash, the provocateur. All characters are aptly cast. Harikrishna’s music gives just the right amount of haunting and three songs do stay in the mind–but only for a while. Editing is tight and action scenes are part of the overall gameplan.
 Kaddipudi can easily be called Jackie-2 for its plot structure and may take time to really sink in. For Soori again vomits all his angst against an uncaring society. No need to look for social messages. Or a sense of responsibility either - it is left to individual upbringing and sensibilities.

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