In this road journey of an old hangman and a convict, Chandra Siddarth ruminates on much more than life and death. The prime character Jangayya (Doddana) when he is not summoned to pull the noose, is a veterinary doctor in his village and leads his life based on scruples and righteousness. You empathise with the dichotomy of this character who treats injured animals with love and on the other hand executes his dharma of taking life. He lubricates the noose with mashed banana to ensure a pain-less death but has no hold on the play driven by lord Siva.
Aatagadara Siva
becomes an apt title.

The escaped convict Babji (Uday Shankar) lands in a four-wheeler being driven by Jangayya who has been called by the prison authorities to hang the former. Oblivious of each other’s identities, the journey goes on while a series of characters bump into them. Some ask for a lift and some just pass by. The two-hour journey has these characters that intersect and all at some point have a life changing moment. The film has mostly newcomers and a few familiar faces from the Telugu film industry but what you notice is not them but very well-written, nuanced and also fleshed out characters that stay in your mind for a long time. The director dishes out a warm and poignant story on good and bad, crime and redemption.

Though it is a remake of a Kannada film
Rama Rama Re
. The convict is brooding and reflective but his silence speaks more than anything else. Among all, Dodanna who is unable to carry his own weight, shoulders the responsibility of so many lives and stands out in the film; his noose at one point also becomes the swing for a newborn.

Don’t miss out on the climax assuming you know what will come next. The background score is perfect. Screenplay is tight and holds the film together.


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