Geetha Govindam: warmth saves this repeated track

A scene from Geethagovindam

Vijay Devarakonda is the main engine that drives Geeta Govindam, and it is surprising how many tried and jaded methods he can brighten up with an easygoing charm. Desperately looking for an ideal girl (read “mother-like” sanskaari), Vijay Govindam (Devarakonda) is a self-proclaimed “most eligible bachelor in my area”. When he finally falls for Rashmika Mandanna’s Geeta, an advice from a drunken ‘love guru’ friend sends things for a  toss.

A ‘well-intentioned’ selfie results in an unintentional kiss that has Vijay jumping out of a moving bus to escape Geeta’s angry brother only to reach home and embrace the man as his brother-in-law.

Even with a first step that’s gone horribly wrong, the fact that their siblings are engaged, forces an unyielding Geeta and apologetic Vijay to spend time together in Hyderabad. The city serves as stage for their romance to bud, even in a case as unlikely as theirs.

Will Vijay’s innocence and charm win over Geeta who considers our hero a pervert? (Isn't he a pervert?)

Even as it takes a while for the movie to answer that, for the audience, Devarakonda’s boyish appeal has already done the trick.

Riding high and mighty on the success of Arjun Reddy that catapulted him to an almost superstar-like status in the Telugu industry, Devarakonda breathes life into Vijay. After having had Arjun, a hot-headed, heartbroken, alcoholic, druggie, squeeze out a range of emotions from him, Vijay seems like a cakewalk for Devarakonda.

Arjun Reddy was an intense and layered character, so larger-than-life at times, that despite having a strong supporting cast, the focus was always on Devarakonda. In Geetha Govindam, he is still the centre, but the burden is not as daunting. Yet, his commitment as an actor falters not one bit.

Rashmika Mandanna (of Kirik Party fame) pales in front of Devarakonda’s versatility. But she imbues her Geeta with charisma and manages to hold her own. Rahul Ramakrishna, reprising his role as the hero’s all-weather friend, hits the mark yet again. Geeta Govindam is a very moral film, but director Parasuram never makes it preachy. Certain cringeworthy disasters of casual sexism, dowry menace, casteism are barely avoided — though not entirely — by a sense of humour.

Manikandan’s consistent cinematography elevates the film. Even in scenes filled with action and drama, the cinematographer finds his own space to explore. The dream sequence in the beginning involving a wedding is rich in colour and emotions. The camerawork is complemented by Gopi Sundar’s rousing and hummable music.

At the end of the show, you'd have seen the familiar fare having been repeated one more time. However, that a simple story is mixed with scraps of wit and two very good-looking people will make it more palatable for you.

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Geetha Govindam: warmth saves this repeated track

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