Friday, March 24, 2006

Parameshi Prema Prasanga (1985)

Parameshi Prema Prasanga (1985)
Featuring: Ramesh Bhat, Arundati Nag, Anant Nag, Shankar Nag, Manjunath, C R Simha and others.
Directed by: Ramesh Bhat

For this debut venture Ramesh Bhat chooses a tried and tested family entertainer formula. Stories about married couples and the challenges they face specially with regards to trust is something that is as real as life itself. Many movies have successfully tried to showcase this and Parameshi Prema Prasanga (PPP) attempts to do the same.

Parameshi (Ramesh Bhat) is happily married to a village belle Ramamani (Arundati) and they both parent a little boy Paapu. He works for a small time firm run by a vicious lady boss and gossip monger of a colleague team. Simha is the office peon who gets his kicks placing childish bets with the employees. Parameshi is something of a simpleton who is not necessarily aware of the conning mindsets of insensitive people. He falls prey to one of Simha’s little bets and ends up going out with another female colleague in the office a couple of times. This does not gel well with the naïve wife at home and she confronts Parameshi about the same. He scoffs it off saying in the changing social framework one has to be accepting with such socializing. He also goes on to add that it would never bother him if she (Ramamani) would do the same.

True to her strong willed self, Ramamani enacts a little drama herself to convince Parameshi that she is having an affair with a faceless name. Cigarette butts, movie tickets, her unusual staying away from the house – it has all the cliché suspicion-arousing elements that couples are known to succumb to. This makes our hypocritical little man Parameshi very upset and he takes to extensive drinking (of course!) to overcome this unbearable pain. Ramamani is successful in her attempt and is on the verge of breaking the news to him. However, things spiral out of control when Simha, being his mischievous self, adds the final nail in the coffin by sending Parameshi an anonymous letter confirming Ramamani’s affair. This pretty much ends the couple’s happy journey. Parameshi takes off without any news to an unknown destination leaving the helpless and innocent wife and child behind.

Without an option she braces herself to face reality. She gets all kinds of odd jobs to support herself and the growing child. One song later the child is a four year old Manjunath who is shown attending school. A chance encounter brings Manjunath and his father Parameshi together. It is not long before Parameshi realizes this fact and files a case in court for custody of his son. A showdown eventually takes place bringing a tired and weather-beaten Ramamani face to face with Parameshi.

Anant Nag plays Paapanna in all this as a parallel character who is an alcoholic lawyer. Nothing much happens with his character till the last few minutes of the movie. A surprise package of the movie is Shankar Nag who I saw after so many years. It had been a very long time since I had seen Shankar and it was a refreshing few minutes anyway.

Performances wise Arundati Nag proves she is a natural on screen. She emotes well and plays the role of the gullible yet alert village girl with finesse. In a way she is the only major entity in the post intermission parts. Ramesh Bhat is adequate as the suspicious Parameshi. Manju does a good job reminding me of his classic performance in Swami and Friends. Others chip into their finitely scoped character roles although Anant and Shankar were definitely wasted.

Ramesh Bhat does a decent job at putting a cohesive script into execution. Technically the film is well shot although editing could use some work. The climax which was expected to be a major court room drama also leaves a lot to be desired from. Music is nothing to write home about.

Initially my impression was that PPP would be a laugh riot of a movie with major comic sequences. However, I was proved wrong. A script like this could have been a light hearted and comedy based one like Rama Shama Bhama (which also dealt with a similar theme) but Ramesh Bhat chooses to give it a serious and realistic angle. This in a way kills the potential such a time tested script could have had. Bhat’s hesitation with experimenting with a good story is what makes this feature pretty ordinary. With the Nag brothers in the cast, I thought he could have done a lot more than use them as crowd pullers by casting them in minor and lack luster roles.

1 comment:

Rakesh Babu G R said...

I saw the movie today. I had lot of expectations, but I was disappointed. Well, a small correction, the name of
Arundhati Nag in the end is given as Arundhati Rao.