Eega ( 2012, 2 hrs 25 mins)
On Bug Night, the standout entry had to be the Tollywood action flick Eega. I think this was the unofficial fan favourite. With its crazy premise and action galore, it’s hard not to fall in love with the film’s unlikely hero: the housefly.
Nani (Nani) has pursued Bindu (Samantha Ruth Prabhu) for two years. Bindu pretends to not be interested, but secretly loves him as well. She is a micro artist (someone who makes art from tiny canvases like grains of rice), and also a non-profit worker who catches the eye of Sudeep (Sudeep), a rich and ruthless industrialist who always gets what he wants, and he wants Bindu. When he realizes the courtship between her and Nani, he eliminates his competition by murdering Nani, and, consoling Bindu over the loss of her friend, moves in like the shark he is. Nani’s last words to Sudeep were a vow to kill him if he went near to Bindu. This vengeance fuels the reincarnation of Nani as a fly. Yup, you heard me, a fly. Sounds crazy? Well, it actually works. Nani comes back to protect the love of his life, and with her micro artistic talents and love, fulfills his vow as a tiny fly.
I love me some Bollywood films, and in this case, Telugu or Tollywood films (the film industry based in the Andhra Pradesh state in south India). I used to work in Toronto’s Little India, and became familiar with many of the stars (I would still like to marry Vivek Oberoi) and popular films, as well as the Bollywood format. Most of the time, that includes family oriented subject matter, i.e., no overt sexual behaviour, although action and violence are welcome, stories that instill values, comedies and elaborate musical/dance numbers. I use these films as a go to when I have horror movie overload, to cleanse the palette so to speak. Limited T n’ A, some bloody moments, but mostly fun and frolic. So I was thrilled when Eega (which means “housefly”) was included in the lineup for the festival. And so was everyone else because this movie had the crowd cheering.
There was action, a musical number, and sci-fi and fantasy elements that kept you riveted to the screen. The fly’s determination to foil Sudeep’s diabolical overtures towards Bindu was heartwarming and hilarious at the same time, and the performances were great. Tongue in cheek and fun, Sudeep’s villainous portrayal and his spiral into madness as he tries to cope with a vengeful fly included some downright ridiculous moments that had the best comedic timing. Nani and Bindu’s relationship was a touch saccharine but it worked with the film’s over the top story, and coupled with some extensive CGI animation and effects, you got a roller coaster ride that made the unbelievable believable. Definitely worth taking a look if you want a weird and wonderful cinema experience!
Favourite Scene: It’s a tie. This first is the fly workout montage. Like every good action flick, the hero has to get battle ready, fueled by his revenge, to gain the upper had on his enemy. Well, Eega does it up right. Just has to be seen! Then there is a scene that got everyone cheering. I won’t give it away, but the fly gives Sudeep a direct message that will floor you!