REVIEW: ‘Kantara’ – A fantastic start and a jaw dropping climax, but loses sight of the core during the process.

The makers of KGF, Hombale films is the major reason for this hyped up release of the much-anticipated movie in the Kannada cinema industry. The film had all the necessary components and scope to be a major motion picture, but as it continued and included more well-known scenes, I thought it started to falter. As a Tamil audience, we are accustomed to a lot of this, thus it makes sense that there are so many analogies to the Dhanush starrer “Asuran.” This may differ across regions and is a fully original storytelling in Kannada. The way plot was told starting in 1890, and the scenes where Panjuruli Deivam was introduced as the protagonist, and the premise was “Godly,” giving the movie one of the most amazing starts ever. The crowd is immediately tickled to the edge of their chairs by this.

After then, the main character of the movie, Shiva, who is portrayed by Rishabh Shetty, is introduced. An furious young man who stands hard against the government and the system to protect it for the people is a devoted worker to his boss and a sincere lover of the forest and environment. Strong and resonant political messages were made in the movie about the tribes living in the forest and the law that violates their rights. Murali, played by Kishore, is the only representative of the government and the law, and he gives one of the best performances in the movie.

The film’s stunning cinematography by Arvind S. Kashyap, music by Ajaneesh Loknath, and some excellent stunt choreography by Vikram Mor are all examples of technical brilliance, but what really stands out is how beautifully the tradition is depicted and how the Bhoota Kola Gods, which are worshipped by the locals of the area, are highlighted. This makes it much more fascinating for the Kannada audience because it has such a strong connection with them. Every actor who played God were really superb but with his spectacular performance in the conclusion, Rishabh Shetty steals the spotlight.

What was ineffective? The story’s most thrilling element—the relationship between Bhoota Kola and present events, the King’s heir, the God’s heir, and the Gods themselves—is avoided by the narration for a bit longer than is necessary. The film drags a little bit since it takes so long to get to the finale, which is the more predicted return of the Gods and is no surprise. The most of the twists are successful, but there are a couple that are not as shocking as the film’s creators had hoped, such the betrayals. Despite a few scenes here and there, Shiva was the only subject of the film, and up until the conclusion, it felt entirely disconnected.

Kantara is definitely a technically strong and grandeur film highly relatable to the target regional audience with emotionally connecting, honestly portrayed tradition of the locals but at the same time a not so new narration and making but with a lot of magical moments for the outsiders like me.