When director B. Rama Murthy announced the remaking of his
own successful film "Naa Rani Nee Maharani" with Pooja Gandhi, there
was a lot of skepticism as to whether the film can stand up to the comparison to
the earlier hit film released in the early nineties. Malashri was riding the
crest of a big wave at the time she acted in "Rani Mahani" which had a
big superstar like Ambareesh and a budding star like Shashi Kumar. Jaggesh was
another actor who showed his remarkable talent in a comedy oriented role.
But unfortunately, this new remade film despite some changes in the story line suffers because of wrong selection of the artists to the dilution of production values of the film. B. Rama Murthy makes another blunder by opting out of changes which makes the film look like a film of the 1970s rather than a film of contemporary period.
The 1992 hit "Rani Maharani" was a remix of many successful Hindi films like "Chaal Baaz" and "Seeta Aur Geeta". "Chaal Baaz" was released fifteen years after "Seeta Aur Geeta", but was able to look fresh because the actors were capable of delivering goods. And the technicians were able to improve upon their work to suit the new film technology. B.Rama Murthy should have learnt lessons from this experiment.
Obviously he has not. The result is that Pooja Gandhi and her team of artists and technicians look pale in comparison with Malashri and others in the original film. There are many inconsistencies in the film. Pooja, who has done the film actor`s role in the film, is seen rejecting the offer of a film which needs her to expose on screen. But just a few sequences later she is seen in a song sequence which clearly shows her in exposing postures.
Added to these inconsistencies, B. Rama Murthy chooses a sleep-inducing narration. The two heroes are unfit to even act in supporting roles as they are expressionless in most parts.
The story goes like this. Pooja is a film actress who is exploited by her greedy relatives. Being timid, Pooja is forced to agree to all contracts. She wants to move out of this hell and surprisingly comes in contact with tomboyish Rani who is a problematic daughter of peace loving parents. She often plays with young children and creates problems with others. Rani decides to become a film actress for a few days and Pooja wants to move out from the hell she is living in. What are the confusions created later forms the rest of the story.
While Malashri carried off her role effortlessly in the 1992 film, Pooja Gandhi proves to be unequal to play the two roles which are diametrically different from each other. Even the veteran artists look silly on the screen. Less said about the camera work the better in these days when Kannada films are reaching the peak in the cinematographical department. Vinay Chandra`s music is passable in this otherwise silly film which has to be outrightly dismissed as a totally wasted effort.