Kartik of BollyFools was seeing the IMAX showing right after mine so he asked if I would do a short video review after seeing the very first showtime of Bahubali 2 in the US. Salim of BollyFools then edited it down to this video they posted on the BollyFools Youtube channel. Thanks for the opportunity!
With a sequel, especially one this anticipated, there is that fear that it just cannot live up to the first movie, or the hype. I am here to tell you, after having just spent $40 to see the very first IMAX show of the day, that it satisfies. It completely satisfies. Rajamouli has done it again!! It was absolutely glorious to see it on the huge IMAX screen. Totally worth the money to me. Kartik from Bollyfools Youtube Channel interviewed me moments after I came out of the screening:
Everyone has spent two long years wondering #WKKB – Why Kattappa Killed Bahubali. The first film left us with possibly the biggest mystery cliffhanger of all time. I’m not going to spoiler the movie for you. You need to experience it all for yourself.
I just loved how the movie circled back to the beginning in lots of ways — thematically and visually. You’ll know what I mean when you see it.
I loved being in a first day crowd that was whistling and yelling for the big entrances. Prabhas is AMAZING! One thing I really loved about the film is that it had some wonderful moments of humor. After I saw Bahubali the Beginning, I sought out Prabhas’s other films, and in his rom coms especially he has such a mischievous sense of humor and play in his wooing. And Rajamouli let him show that side. Kattappa as matchmaker is just a delight.
Rana as Bhalladeva turns SO evil. Shockingly so in some parts. Great performance as the villain, and the final epic battle between Shivuvu and Bhalla at the end of the film is everything you could hope for in a mano a mano fight. Really thrilling.
Anushka Shetty really shines as the proud warrior princess. She does have flaws — I liked that she wasn’t just a perfect doll. Unfortunately, Tamannah is only really seen in the final battle sequence. This movie is more about the love story of Shivuvu’s parents.
There are great battle scenes, too, but much of the movie, which almost till the end takes place in the time of Bahubali the elder, is about the family drama. What leads to Bahubali’s death? Why did Bhalla chain Devasena in the courtyard? Who put that arrow in Sivagami’s back? All the answers are very satisfying. You can guess where the story is mostly going to go, just from the first film, but there are still some surprises along the way. Pride goest before a fall, is all I’ll say.
Someone asked me if I like this better than the first film, and I can’t really answer that. Because you can’t get back that feeling of wonderment the first time you saw the imagination and visuals of Bahubali. Now you expect Rajamouli to blow you away. There was one love song that literally went into a flight of fantasy that had me saying “Wow” out loud.
The score is particularly effective in heightening moments of tension and drama. I don’t know that the soundtrack songs are quite as catchy earworms that the first film songs were. But especially the beautiful harmonies of the female voices singing together in this one are growing on me:
I saw Bahubalithe Beginning four times in the theater alone. I don’t know how many times I’ll see this one, but I know I’m taking all three of my sons to see it for Mother’s Day. I’ve told them this is what I want for my present — for us to see it together. That will make the second Indian film they’ve ever seen, but the first in a theater. I loved that at my 2:30 shows there were parents who had taken their kids out of school early to see the show. I told one little boy that someone must love him very much.
There are scenes and tableaus from this film that will always stay with me, but one in particular is Prabhas sleeping with his head in Sivagami’s lap. Since I don’t speak Telugu, I didn’t realize some of the songs lyrics talk about that. This film does have a romance and brother rivalry, but at the core it’s about the relationship of a son with his mother.
This is such a great film! I left ecstatic and wishing I could see it all again right away. There’s revenge that’s sweet, and redemption, too.
Bravo S. S. Rajamouli! Bravo Prabhas and the rest of the cast! You’ve done it again!