10 people from different walks of life are chosen to be a part of a reality show titled
Aatagara, which will have them living on an island sans any contact to the outside world. But, what happens when this show turns out to be a sinister trap and people go missing...
When a lay Bengalurean complains about the lack of good films in Kannada and that's why they don't watch them, usually a hot-blooded Kannadiga comes up with a ready list of must-watch films.
Aatagara will surely end up being one such recommendation from hereon, for it shines in all departments, right from the scripting to the impeccable casting and the rich production values. It is very rare that you walk out of a cinema hall feeling a sense of accomplishment and hope,
Aatagara leaves you with just that.
The film begins with 10 people, which range from a lay fan-girl to a top actress, with a host of others including a supermodel, a drug peddler, a doctor, a fashion photographer, an educationist and even an NGO activist, being sent on a yacht to an island off Karwar. Here, they are asked to live without any contact to the world outside. While the stay begins on a happy, sing-song note, there's something sinister going on and people go missing on the island. Who is playing these games with them on the island?
When it comes to a genre like this, which requires slick editing and some gripping visuals, it is very easy for everything to be compromised with tacky stuff. But, one must hand it to the makers of this film, for it gives one hope for better cinema. The casting is perfect, each character suits his or her role. For instance, while Balaji Manohar's lascivious nature as the fashion photographer can make one cringe, Meghana Raj oozes oomph as a supermodel, something unlike what she has done in her other roles. Parul, as the diva from the film industry, looks every bit her part, while people like Prakash Belawadi reiterate why theatre actors are held in such high regard. Chiranjeevi, who has taken a risk of signing a film that doesn't have him as the solo hero, must be commended. Veterans Ananth Nag and Dwarakish are at their vintage best, while P Ravi Shankar and Pavana emerge silent showstoppers.
Director Chaitanya, whose
Aa Dinagalu is still regarded as one of the best from last decade, has come up with another ace. The script and screenplay deserve applause, as does Anoop Seelin's music, especially for the background score. The twists in the plot are succinct and there isn't one dull moment for the viewer. Sathya Hegde's camerawork is the other pillar of this narrative.
Watch this film to be entertained, for it gives the viewers very little to complain about.