NTR: Kathanayakudu First Reviews - Nostalgic Tale of a ‘Demigod’

The first instalment of the NTR biopic - NTR: Kathanayakudu based on the life and times of late actor and political leader NT Rama Rao hit the big screen on 9 January. Helmed by Krish, the film stars Balakrishna in the titular role and Vidya Balan (the film marks her Telugu debut) in the role of NTR's first wife, Basavatarakam. Here’s a compilation of the first reactions and reviews of the film.

Film: NTR: Kathanayakudu
Director: Krish
Cast: Nandamuri Balakrishna, Vidya Balan, Rakul Preet Singh

"Balakrishna, Vidya Balan starrer NTR Kathanayakudu, directed by Krish, often finds itself in the same zone that’s common for biopics, where you are left wondering - Can you be objective while talking about an icon, especially when he is considered to be a God?After all, NT Rama Rao personified Lord Krishna, Rama and scores of other mythological characters, for the Telugu audience. And to complicate the equation even further, in Krish’s version of NTR, the Telugu cinema icon-turned-politician is presented as a perfect man right from the word go...Apart from Balakrishna, it’s Vidya Balan who makes a great impression as Basavatarakam." - Hemanth Kumar, Firstpost "NTR Kathanayakudu is a mixed bag, depending on which kaleidoscope you choose to watch the movie through. As a documentation of a great man’s life, someone adored and revered, the movie ticks a lot of boxes... It feels like director Krish was equally conflicted - to show the man who would become god, or to show the god who was at one point, just a common man?...Where NTR Kathanayakudu scores is in upholding what many lovers of nostalgia would expect from the movie - reel conversations, idiosyncrasies of greats like Chakrapani and GV Reddy, old sets, a lot of trivia. " - Krishna Sripada, Newsminute " If one expects the film to show an honest glimpse into the life of a man who stole hearts over five decades after getting there from nothing or show his struggle, they would be disappointed. Because, this is a film that treats the late Nandamuri Taraka Rama Rao as the larger-than-life hero turned flawless god he was to his fans...NTR Kathanayakudu recreates scenes from old movies and these are a delight to watch on-screen for the most part." - Neeshita Nyayapati. Times of India

Here are some other excerpts from some Telugu publications.

"Balakrishna as NTR has performed well especially as older NTR i.e. 60s age NTR. In few emotional scenes he did good. Entire second half, NBK very much resembles NTR in body language." - Telugu360 "The story and real life of NTR are well documented and known to all his followers. So, that leaves us with very little surprise. Also, there is not much struggle that could be cinematically depicted...we have a film where the first half is passable and the second half is slightly better. The general feeling is that of a sincerely made movie...Vidya Balan playing the lead female protagonist is an absolute delight. It is her combination scenes with Balakrishna that bring the highly engaging moments in the movie. " - Mirchi9

Here are some of the first reactions to the film on social media. Viewers have hailed the climax and Balakrishna’s performance.

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