Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Because Without Them Cinema Would Not Exist - Telugu Film Actresses: My Favourites

It´s not easy to be a telugu film heroine. For one thing, there is not much to do. Whether being romanced by the hero or threatened by some misguided goondas, the possibilities to display your acting abilities (if you have some) are really small. Most telugu movies are male oriented, the hero is the centre of attention and the heroine reduced to a pretty accessory, who has to be there for some short scenes before the songs and who disappears for most of the second half. There are only a few heroines who achieve to make the most of their small amount of screen time and to leave a memorable impression.

But still, you shouldn´t underestimate the role of a telugu heroine. After all it´s her that the hero is fighting all these goondas, all these awesome villains for, growling with clenched teeth: "Indu/Shailaja/Shruti NADI!". Without her, much of the ongoing action would be pointless, if not non-existent. Heck, there wouldn´t be any more dancing! (*Little pause for staring in horror*) The heroine is the driving force behind the hero (and the movie) and therefore irreplacable.

So, let´s celebrate and appreciate some of the most prominent heroines right now in the telugu film industry* who happen to be my favourites:

(*Although you actually cannot bound them to one industry since all of them worked in Hindi, Telugu, Tamil, etc. movies. Which is something that is very special and unique for Indian Cinema, I think, and confirms to actresses only (for the most part). I mean just imagine someone like, I don´t know, Angelina Jolie or Natalie Portman working in a German movie! And not even as the star but as the second fiddle to some unknown german actor. It´s unthinkable. And what about the language barrier!?)

1. Kajal Aggarwal

Although Kajal is my favourite southie heroine I actually took several attempts of writing these lines because I really can´t quite specify why I like her so much. She didn´t have any movies yet where she could sweep me off my feet by her performance, she is not perfect-pretty in the standard way that heroines are nowadays with her crooked nose, her big front teeth and her skinny legs, she is also not that much of an awesome dancer. 
But still I always feel happy when she appears on screen and cannot take my eyes away whenever she´s in the frame. I find her beautiful. I think she is an amzing performer. And giving the right things to do, she can make you sit through an otherwise boring movie just to see her scenes. Maybe it´s because she is not perfect, she appeals that much to me. Because as much as I admire Aish´s beauty I could not imagine being friends with her. I would feel just too intimidated. Whereas Kajal with her girl-next-door-looks, seems to be just the girl I could imagine sitting next to me in my urban design class. And who, like me, instead of paying attention would laugh about my professor´s weird dress sense and his bald spot he so desperately tries to cover with his remaining hair.

2. Tamannah Bhatia

If I would ever have to describe Tamannah in one word, the first thing to come to my mind would be actress. In my opinion she is the only one out there in the south who would be able to stem a film on her own small shoulders. I would love to see her in a heroine centric movie, where she would be the star. I also can´t believe that she is only 21 years old because she seems more mature and confident than some other actresses who are almost ten years older than her. I just hope that her last adventure with that Bunny movie was only an experiment and not a tendency towards her further choice of roles. (I haven´t seen "Oosaravelli" but it seems it was a meatier role than the one before).

3. Genelia d´Souza

I saw Genelia for the first time in JTYJN and I adored her. Her character was someone I could relate to, a normal girl and not a glamorized beauty queen. That was so refreshing. I had no idea that she was already an established actress in the south, for me she was just a new face I liked. Actually, when I think about it, I have to thank Genelia for introducing me to SI cinema because after seeing her in JTYJN I was desperate to see something else with her and the choice fell to Bommarillu. It was my first SI film and I must say that I was rather disappointed. Genelia´s act as the Manic Pixie Dream Girl was SO annoying, SO frustrating that I almost gave up on her. I thought that if every other film with her is like that, I wouldn´t be able to bear it. And then, after a loooong time, I saw Happy and was fully convinced again. Taken down from her crazy trip she delivered a very subtle, subdued and emotional performance that I haven´t been able to even imagine. After that I was very careful to which films to choose, but in the ones I saw her in she always managed to impress me.

4. Shriya Saran

I saw her in only one movie and in one item number but I loved her in both. Maybe I will reverse my opinion of her when I´ve seen more of her movies but right now I think that she is one of the prettiest and nicest heroines I´ve seen on the screen. Yes, you´ve read right, nicest. She is someone I would like to be friends with and hang out because she seems to be a fun person to be around. Do you know those people who seem to be perfect but they´re so unpretentious about it that you cannot help but like them nevertheless how pretty, smart or whatever they are? I think Shriya is one of them.
Some heroines tend to get intimidated or overshadowed by their hero, but Shriya is one of those few who can and will stand her ground and I like her for that confidence.

5. Charmee Kaur

Oh Charmee, where have you been all my life? Seeing you as the best friend of the "heroine" in "Bbuddah Hoga Terra Baap" I would never have imagined that you were an actual heroine! (Although you WERE (except for Sonu) the best part about the movie). But seeing you in Pournami, with your feisty attitude, your awesome dancing and shiny teeth and then in Chukkallo Chandrudu, which has now become my favourite Siddhu-movie, I fell in love with you. You are awesome, Charmee, I hope you will never loose your bubbly face, your curves and that smile of yours and continue to rock.


  1. Aww, no Trisha? :( She'd occupy my nuber one position on such a list, whereas Kajal wouldn't be anywhere near it :P

    Have you seen Genelia's Ready? That's another good one, but I don't know whether you'll like it since it's like a whacky version of MBKD :D Bud definitely watch Urumi, she was crazy fierce in that movie (by god, not the Telugu dub, the Malayalam original!!)

    Charmi was very, very good in Anukokunda Oka Roju - she totally carried that movie on her shoulders. It's a thriller, moves at a slow pace but I truly enjoyed that one a lot and it made me see what a good actress Charmi is (def. loved her in Pournami, that's one of my most favourite Telugu movies EVER).

    Shriya is sadly a VERY underrated actress. She's gorgeous, can act, dances like a dream, is so natural in front of the camera... :( I really enjoyed her in Arjun with Mahesh Babu, but her role was rather limited. My main 'problem' with her is that I don't like most of the movies she stars in :( Doesn't mean I can't enjoy her music videos - Azhagiya Tamil Magan, Kanthaswamy/Mallanna (her and Vikram make one sizzling couple)... I really hope I'll like Awaarapan and Rowthiram. I love her, but I want to love a movie of hers too :/

  2. I don´t care much about Trisha. Maybe I haven´t seen her in the right movies (only with Prabhas and Siddhu) but she never managed to impress me. She´s cute but kind of meh.

    I heven´t seen Ready and Urumi yet but the latter one is definitely on my list. And I would NEVER watch the dubbed version of a movie! Nothing compares to the original as the film geek in me says. ;)

    I would love to see more of Charmee but I´m kind of lost what movies of her are worth watching. So thanks for the recommendation, any other?

    Aww, how cool to find another Shriya lover! We should make a fanclub!:D Many people seem to find her rather annoying or irritating... Can´t imagine why? I don´t like Mahesh Babu much so any other recommendations? (I´m not really well known in tamil movies so the hero doesn´t matter ;))
    I would love to see more of her but as with Charmee I´m lost in the sheer amount of movies she has made and which your comment makes me think not all of them are really good.

  3. Another hit Charmi's solo movie is "Mantra". It is a suspense horror movie

  4. she got state's best actress award for that movie for that year

  5. Can't help you with more Charmi movies besides the ones I mentioned.

    Know what? I consider Shriya to be THE most underrated star in both South and North filmi industries -_- Ah well, she's still young so I hope she won't be playing mothers for at least some 8 years >.<

    I have seen her in Azhagiya Tamil Magan, Kanthaswamy/Mallanna, Pokkiri Raja, Kutty, but didn't really like any of these movies (but Mallanna had the potential to be crazy awesome, yet the editing was horrible >.<) Oh, and I can't forget to mention The Other End of the Line, her English movie. It was harmless fun, but very cliched. Ah, but she's so beautiful I still somehow enjoyed it :D

  6. Thak you all for your recommendations! :)

    @Remini: I have seen The Other End Of The Line by now and although it was pretty predictable, I thought it was cute and sweet and I love cross-cultural romances anyway, so... :) You´re right, Shriya IS beautiful but I also thought that she was pretty good, too, considering she was given much more to do than in her usual indian roles.

    And speaking of her indian roles: despite my indifference to Mahesh Babu I also saw Arjun, since it was the only movie with subtitles on youtube that had Shriya in it and i must say that I was more than pleasently surprised. And not only by Shriya who was her usual beautiful and entertaining self, but also by teh story, by the brother-sister realtinship and teh SONGS! Those were fantastic!

    So thanks once again for the recommendation, I will ckeck out the other ones as soon as I can.

  7. hey i would suggest you to watch tamannah's 100%love, kochen ishtam kochem kashtam and endukenta premantha(actually this movie's climax is crap bt she actd very vl and ram tooo)

  8. Hey Minu,
    Thanks for commenting.:)
    I did watch 100% Love and I LOVED it!:) It is such a sweet movie and an awesome performance by Tammu. KIKK is very good, too. I didn´t see Endukenta Premantha yet but surely will if I get the chance.
    Bye, Martha