'Sasanasabha' hit the cinemas today (December 16). Here is our review of the box-office release.
Elections are just over in Andhra Pradesh. The ruling party, led by Ram Mohan Rao (Aneesh Kuravilla), is worried. The opposition party, led by Shyamala Bharath (Sonia Agarwal), is also worried. They are worried because the verdict is going to be a hung one and they both are going to need the support of Independents to form the government.
This is when Ram Mohan Rao relies on the services of a political goonda named Durga (Amit Tiwari) to intimidate opponents. Durga has been serving a jail term. When he gets a call from the CM, he takes the help of his fellow prison inmate Surya (Indra Sena) to do the job. Surya, who pretends to help the CM, has a secret agenda. What is it? Who does Surya work for?
Do we need political movies where dialogues are this banal?: 'It is called politics in English and Rajakeeyam in Telugu'. Of course, we know that much even though we don't follow BBC and Eenadu. We went to primary school.
When it is not banal, 'Sasanasabha' becomes ridiculously far-fetched. A multi-term Chief Minister trusts an ordinary criminal whom he heard of just a few hours ago, to do the toughest job ahead of the floor test in the Assembly. It is on the competent performance of this job that his political future will depend. Yet, the CM trusts the stranger blindly.
If the CM is dumb, the Leader of the Opposition is even dumber. She doesn't know of the existence of the most powerful Independent candidate who has the ability to influence other MLAs and in turn, determine who becomes the CM.
On the election result day, the CM and his opponent are nervously watching TV. They know the result on the screen and yet wait for the news presenter to complete her sentence before reacting. Usually, on results days, avid political buffs on Twitter don't wait for the final numbers to be out. They start making correct guesses of the final result on the basis of the vote share trends observed. If ordinary folks can be that sharp, can you imagine the CM and the wannabe CM being so clueless?
The very premise of the movie is laughable. In real life, MLAs are bought with money and political parties plot elaborately with the help of trusted strategists when they have to indulge in horse-trading. The recent political tamasha in States like Maharashtra proves the same. Even astute political brains were taken aback by how Uddhav Thackeray was ousted. In 'Sasanasabha', political strategists and brainy thinking are replaced with one gutsy person, the hero who is not even a politician or a strategist.
The flashback involving Rajendra Prasad (as an idealist politician) is overlong and has too many redundant moments. Aneesh Kuravilla sleepwalks through the role, while Sonia Agarwal is watchable (although she looks more like a TV serial mother-in-law rather than a battle-hardened politician). Indra Sena, the hero of the movie, can't be assessed as long as he doesn't remove his overgrown beard.
'Sasanasabha' is the 'baap' of all illogical political dramas.