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‘Baahubali 2’ Was A Successful Business But A Failed Movie

Posted by Harika Maddala in Culture-Vulture
May 8, 2017

It’s been more than a week since “Baahubali 2: The Conclusion” was released. It went on to become the highest grossing  Indian film. A question has been bothering me ever since the news broke of the film earning more than ₹900 crore worldwide. People have been talking about how the film has become the pride of Indian cinema.

So here’s my question: What makes a good film? Is it the story, the cast, the screenplay, the number of awards it wins, the reviews it receives, or its gross earnings? Which among the above does “Baahubali” contain? Is the film really what it’s being made out to be?

A movie isn’t simply a bunch of characters dancing around on the screen to 4-5 soundtracks; there’s more to it than that. The “Baahubali” films are not just two parts with lots of visual effects and star casting – it is a lot more than that.

Rajamouli is an amazing storyteller indeed. Otherwise, it is not that easy to trick millions of audiences all over the world into watching a movie with a plot that bears similarity to several films like “The Lion King” and “Haider”. I don’t even want to get started on the number of regional films which follow a similar plot.

A still from the film Baahubali 2: The Conclusion

The next thing we should evaluate is the screenplay. The amazing visual effects have stolen the show. The amount of effort that went into what we all got to see on the screen is certainly unquestionable. But what really has to be questioned is the amount of creativity that went into the director’s thought process. I bet the opening credits were a major disappointment to all the Marvel fans in the audience.

If that wasn’t enough, the director had to make an Indian superhero by giving him the powers of all the Marvel heroes. While the film’s first part showed us an “Amar Chitra Katha” version of “Krrish”, the second part surprised us with the kind of superheroic acts we are accustomed to seeing in Marvel films. In fact, the hero was waterproof, fireproof and scratch proof too.

Baahubali’s character is adored the most for his dialogue, especially in the scene where he chops off the commander-in-chief’s head for touching women. The movie’s first part romanticised stripping a woman almost naked just to make her realise her ‘feminine’ side. It is sad how Sivagami’s character is reduced to just a woman who is betrayed by her own son and husband. It is difficult to believe that a strong woman would trust her husband and son in spite of knowing their lecherous ways.

It really bothered me how everyone was awestruck by some of the scenes and didn’t bother questioning the number of physics laws being broken.

This movie, today, has earned over ₹1000 crore worldwide. In all probability, it will also bag all the major awards this year. It will not come as a surprise if “Baahubali 2” wins the National Award for the Best Picture, seeing how the first film, which I found to be lacking any story at all, bagged the same. Also, if we take a keen look at the 100 crore club films in India, everything apart from “Dangal”, “PK” and “Bajrangi Bhaijaan” came off as a headache to the ticket-buyer.

But “Baahubali 2” didn’t just become India’s top grosser, it made ₹1000 crore worldwide. Let’s think a little logically now. How hard is it for a movie to make ₹1000 crore when it is being watched on 9,000 screens across the world, with 6,500 screens in India alone? I’d rather appreciate “PK” for releasing in 6,000 screens across the world and bagging ₹792 crore and for its brilliant storyline and its lack of flashy visual effects. Hence, I strongly believe that the credit should go to SS Rajamouli for being an amazing businessman.