Act your way out of trouble

Navarangi
Kannada (U) ¬¬
Director: G Umesh
Cast: Sadhu Kokila, Mimicry Dayanand, Layendra, Prathap, Roopika, Akash Shetty and others

Mandya, like a few places in North Karnataka, is a hotbed of politics. Right down to village level, the competition is so fierce, sometimes lives are lost over it. Friends turning foes, families shunning ties, village elders turning rivals ,etc, are commonplace. Two such rivals Jadegowda and Boregowda keep this tradition going.

Only one of them is without malice and goes on to try his hand at making films, believing that doing so would bring him to Rebel Star Ambarish’s attention and an MLA ticket!

Then there are Shankra and Radha (?) whose relationship is floundering mainly because Shankra is not earning! Realisation that working would fetch rewards is not far behind and Shankra takes up a “job” only to find that he, along with other villagers, has been duped. He leaves for the city to demand justice. Where Jadegowda is looking for a director to complete his film, after two other directors lost their lives directing the first shot!

Navarangi could have built its story quite well on these lines, ringing in laughter every other second. Instead, it showcases Sadhu Kokila's skills as an actor, more than the comedian that he is known to be. There is little he has to do but he does it with finesse.

He has able support from a gaggle of comedians led by Kurigalu Prathap and Layendra and the madcap plot plods on. Till Akash Shetty joins the gang as the film hero cum director. IF Roopika is serious about her career, she would lose weight quickly. A cute face won't carry the day for long.

K C Umesh’s camerawork is adequate for the resources at his disposal. Rajesh Ramanath's music pales in comparison. Or maybe it’s the Nage Bomb effect!
Director Umesh, though, is unable to retain his grip on the film and the climax showcases how he lost it. Alas.  Navarangi could have been a simple, yet beautiful film which gets stuck somewhere between a comedy and a farce.

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