Friday, April 30, 2010

Saptapadi - Movie Review

Most important part of Hindu marriage is taking seven steps in unison for nourishment, strength, prosperity, happiness, progeny, long life and friendship. The seven elements form most important expectations from the couple through rest of the life and any missing element cannot complete a marriage. K. Viswanath’s Saptapadi is an attempt to give rational behind marriage than performing it as boring routine. He also boldly challenges the varna mentioned in Manu Dharma Shastra.

It is routine to give reviews for new releases but it is little strange to pick up a movie that is released decades ago and did not too well in box office. But the attempt made by the great director was sensational and is a beauty. It is certainly bold because any challenge posed to marriage system that is so firmly understood by Indians. So I had picked it up.


Story revolves around a priest family who by hereditary as well as performance gains right to become priests of Goddess Durga temple. JV Somayajulu, an orthodox priest is the central point in the tale. He is orthodox to such an extent that he relinquishes his daughter for marrying against his wish, despite the fact daughter married Brahmin man. He nurtures his grandson (Son’s Son) with all the devotional relation and makes him priest in Goddess Durga temple. When he learns that his daughter-in-law (daughter’s daughter) has become classical dancer and learnt the art with dedication, he decides to have her married to his grandson and marriage is performed under his supervision.

Daughter-in-law, the heroin, falls in love with another man before marriage thinking that he is a Brahmin. When she finds out that he belongs to lower caste and when she does not have courage to fight the society nor the orthodox grand father, she agrees to marriage. Even her lover, the hero, supports the marriage as he thoroughly understands that his love cannot stand the will of the society.

After marriage when heroin’s husband comes to her room during night, she appears to him like the Godess Durga and so instead of touching her he starts performing puja to the wife every night. When JV Somayajulu understands whole story and taking advice from his buddy Allu ramalingayya, both he and his grandson decide to send the girl to her lover.


It is a very delicate story line and directors skill is exposed while handling such topics. Narration was handled too well to ensure that message is passed correctly and no wrong message was cut across. K. Viswanath’s story based flick was made beautifully even though there is no star cast in the movie. His love for keerthanas continues in this movie as well.

1) Climax scene where JV somayajulu justifies why his decision of sending the girl with the lover. He explains basic philosophy behind the caste system and marriage system and advices not to follow it blindly with out knowing the philosophy.
2) First night scene where the girl appears to the husband like Goddess Durga and husband performs puja.
3) The dance scene where JV smayajulu asks the grand daughter to perform while students are reciting Durga Suktam. Heroin is a classical dancer and has done well in the scene.
4) Allu Ramalingayya advising Somayajulu by narrating story of Adi Shankaracharya.
5) All songs are extraordinary but Govullu tellana song marks brilliance of S. Janaki

A must watch movie I would say. I recently purchased CD of the movie for my own collection.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

A appreciable movie if you understand difference between the value system followed with clear understanding and simply adopting it from earlier generations.