Subhash K Jha Selects The Legendary Chiranjeevi’s 5 Finest
Some actors are great performers,others are big stars ,while some others are good human beings. Chiranjeeevi is a blend of all 3. Spanning a career of 43 years he has held the Telugu boxoffice in a thrall with uninterrupted success. Here is my list of favourite Chiranjeevi films.
1. Swayam Krushi(1987): a film about the dignity of labour, directed by the great K Vishwanath, this one features Chiranjeevi as a cobbler who believes no work is too big or small. It is what you do with your work that defines your place in society.Stripping away from his star persona Chiranjeevi gave a performance that his son Ram Charan Teja has watched repeatedly to see the master at work.
2. Indra(2002): One of the biggest hits of Chiranjeevi’s career, this high-voltage action drama about two rival families battling it out to a blood-thirsty finale, is an adrenaline rush. Chiranjeevi unleashed a primeval passion into the plot. This is one of his most avidly watched films.
3. Rudra Veena(1998): Another rare departure from his high-flying hero-giri, this one directed by the redoubtable K Balachander features Chiranjeevi as a classical musician in a ‘clash’ course with his guru, played by the great Sivaji Ganesan in this power exposition on the guru-shishya parampara where Chiranjeevi strips himself of all star trappings to deliver a performance far more raw and real than anything we saw in Chaitanya Tamhane’s The Disciple.
4. Aapadbandhavudu(1992): You won’t find this one on everyone’s list of favourite Chiranjeevi starrers. But in this his third collaboration with K Vishwanath Chiranjeevi was at his tenderest. Playing a Man-Friday who will do anything for his master(Jandhyala) and his daughter(Meenakshi Sheshadri) . Chiranjeevi gave a performance that dived deep into the dynamics of subservience and loyalty.And mental disorder.
5. State Rowdy(1989): If you want to see Chiranjeevi in an out-and-out masala film then try this one. It’s a state-of-art mayhem spree with action scenes that boggle the mind and a plot that had blockbuster written on every frame.State Rowdy is one of Chiranjeevi’s most successful films to date.His fans have watched it repeatedly, some of them 200 times.Chiranjeevi once said, “I don’t do films for the elite.All my films are for masses. If some of them are loved more than others that is not intentional. All my films are my gift to my fans.”