ashta chamma [telugu]

I just came back from laughing my heart out, watching this movie Ashta Chemma – Telugu, and since I enjoyed it so much, am doing the next best thing that comes to mind. Of course write a post about it!

I originally thought I’d just write it in telugu, but then since I have a grand total of a maximum of FIVE telugu readers, I figured I’d just do this in English. It’s fun enough, why not share with all eh?


So yes, the movie. It stars the next cute thing on telugu screen – Swati. She’s not only cute and vivacious, but pretty, has a lovely smile and is completely at ease in front of the camera. The rest I have o clue who they are, but they all came together well.
Story goes like this: Pay special attention, if you miss a line, you’re lost.

Lavanya is a cheerful young thing who’s a huge fan of Mahesh Babu, the telugu onscreen movie star (incidentally, am in love with him too:-)) She loves the dude so much, she’s now obsessed with the name – Mahesh. She lives with her aunt. The aunt has a good friend called Amritha. Then there’s an extremely tall fellow called Anand who is friends with her and the family.

Anand gets bugged with her constant Mahesh-japams and decides in a freak sense of humor introduce her to his friend Mahesh. Lavanya and Mahesh eventually fall in love. She with his name and then him. He for her. One day as you can see in the picture above, she fesses to him that she loves him because his name is Mahesh and shows off her tattoo.
The guy freaks.
He tells Anand that his name is not Mahesh but Rambabu.
That scene is spectacularly done. They make it sound like Rambabu is a Venkatappiah, or Muniyandi or even a Bhikharilal.
Rambabu (who was once Mahesh) says some sob story about how he hated being in a village and so came up with this alter ego who lived in the city and changed his name to Mahesh and created this so-called fun character (mahesh) that he visits in the city to his sister – Varalakshmi.
Secretly Varalakshmi starts imagining Mahesh and is falling head over heels in love with the vision of him.

Our hero tries fessing up to the heroine and she balks at the name ‘Rambabu’ and makes a huge scene of how ugly the name is, and how romantic Mahesh sounds. The hero by now knows he’s completely done and is in a soup.
Rambabu is forced (who is still mahesh acc to lavanya) to meet with the aunt who grills him, and makes a kabob out of his very fishy behavior.

Anand in a devilish plan decides he ought go visit Rambabu’s village, Lakkampudi. Varalakshmi sees Anand and thinks he is Mahesh. Anand is incredibly thrilled and proceeds to romance the girl he now fondly calls as Lucky.

Rambabu hears this and lands back in his village to protect his sister. Lavanya follows suit. She and Lucky get into a catfight when they realize they both are getting hitched to “mahesh”. The two heros land and each girl clings to a different guy. The guys are now complete suckers. The girls hate them and love each other and find solace in each other’s arms. (as in comforting girl talk)

Since the two girls are hung up n the name ‘Mahesh’ each of the boy’s individually bribe the local purohit to do a naamakaranam and change their respective names to Mahesh. The boys fight over who has more rights to the name. Anand in another freak narad muni act, decides to call the aunt. The aunt comes and falls in love with the riches and insists Lavanya get married with Rambabu. Lavanya continues to pout and is creating a big drama around the haystacks.

In the meanwhile, the purohit and a lady called ‘Ammaji’ who helps raise Rambabu are in lurve. For unfathomable only a director would know reason, they can’t/won’t/don’t get married.

Aunt recognizes Ammaji and insists she tell her flashback story. 25 years ago, Ammaji was then Anasuya and lost a little baby while she went to greet her celluloid hero (Mahesh Babu’s father Krishna). She wails more on the loss of her pink turkish towel that she had rolled the baby in, than the baby itself. Rambabu darts off suddenly into a flashback, and brings his treasured souvenir chest (one that has all our secrets locked away and have hidden under our bed) out which has the prized pink turkish towel.

Rambabu is thrilled he met his real birth mother.

Purohit declares that his love for her will not vanish with this new discovery. Aunt steps in and relieves everyone of the burden of being magnanimous and large-hearted and declares that the boy is indeed her friend Amritha’s son. Amritha lands soon after and there is a nice complete reunion of mom and son.

Our girl is still sulking about her hero cheating her of the fancy name.

Amritha gets a baby picture of the lost son out and shows her the name that’s written behind.

Her lost son who became Rambabu was originally named Mahesh.

Everyone lives happily ever after.


Telugu teluste maatram tappakunda choodandi. Chaala, simplega, low-budget movie ayina dialogs baguntayi, nenayite padi padi navvanu. Naku chaala baga nachindi. πŸ™‚

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  1. says: RukmaniRam

    hmm. I’ve heard about this film.. and I’m just beginning to learn telugu – by watching movies πŸ˜€ Maybe I should watch it..

    Good narration here btw.

    1. says: rads

      Thanks! I wrote this half sleepy and tired, so it’s a miracle I ran through it. In fact now that I read it, there are a few details I missed, incl OW’s reference of course! :

  2. says: The Cydonian

    For philistines like Metlin ;-), you should mention that this is a contemporary version of Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest. Additionally, all the clichΓ©s in the movie exist for a reason; they’re lampooning just about every ‘classical’ Telugu movie out there, from peddaraayuDu to chinna raayuDu to all KR Viswanath’s movies. πŸ˜€

    In short, you have to be Telugu to get it. πŸ™‚

    1. says: rads

      arghh, I knew you’d come up with this. I was to add the Oscar Wilde reference bit towards the end, but it was quite late and all I was concerned was to get to bed and I forgot!

      heh@your telugu line. Telugu doesn’t mean I got to see all that useless telugu movies there are out there. Like you do anyway! :p

    2. says: metlin

      Yes, I know – it is the “contemporary” and localization that I have a problem with. At least in similar translations (e.g. Spanish), the pun still exists – taking that away sort of destroys what the play is all about.

      In short, you have to be Telugu to get it. πŸ™‚

      I think I’ll live, thankyouverymuch.

      1. says: The Cydonian

        You have to understand… it’s not about the story per se, it’s never the story; Telugu cinema is all about dialogues and word-play. Telugu literature has traditionally been about word-plays and gimmickry that’s hard to translate into English. Rads, notably, did not talk about the best scenes in the movie. πŸ™‚

        In short, yeah, the ending sucked, but it’s entirely made up by marvellous dialogue; it is amazing by contemporary standards.

        1. says: rads

          You right. It was a hard toss-up to write this in telugu or english and ultimately time won. The dialogs were what made the movie stand out. The dialogs are in telugu πŸ™‚

  3. says: Roshni

    Sounds like it is a copy of The importance of being Earnest…. *sigh*… I just knew it… any contemporary desi movie has to be a copy of some good (sometimes not good) english movie (or book)!

    1. says: The Cydonian

      Not a copy, a re-interpretation. The movie director had been entirely open about it.

      Happens all the time with Importance; out here in Singapore, they’re doing a gay re-interpration of the play.

      Also, you’d want to look at the director’s previous movie, GrahaNam; a movie take on an excellent short-story by a famous Telugu author, Chalam.

      1. says: rads

        Grahanam was deep. I think I spent a good few days thinking about the movie after I was done watching. On a side note, am getting better at reading telugu script at a horsetrot pace (as opposed to an ant’s pace) so maybe I can hope to pick up some reading after all.

  4. says: Sudharsan

    What?!! Thats a line by line copy of ‘The importance of being Earnest’ by Oscar Wilde! But as usual, our Indian writers have changed a vital detail- it was a handbag in the original, and is a towel in this. πŸ™‚

    1. says: rads

      lol, yes it is. Quite nicely done tho’ – Frankly, I liked the way it was done more than the story itself. The dialogs were quite witty πŸ™‚

  5. says: maxdavinci

    ila story motham raasate inka choodaniki em undi?

    If you liked this then I’d reccomend two other new gult movies by krishnavamsi.

    ‘Chandamama’ and ‘Sasairekha Parinayam’.

    1. says: rads

      I saw Sasirekha at the movies. Apart from Genelia’s screeching, I thought it was quite nicely done. Don’t think I saw Chandamama.

  6. says: naren

    As sudarshan pointss out , The Importance of being Earnest.

    The plot is completely lame-brained, so if it is funny, the acting musst have been good.

    Laughter is good, aint it?

  7. Oh, I want to watch. I can understand Telugu. But am sure AB can’t. To get him to watch any movie he understands is an effort, this I don’t even want to imagine.

    So, this is going to be a lonely, bored housewife’s afternoon entertainment only! πŸ˜€

    1. says: rads

      LOL@movie watching. I used to be like that πŸ™‚ Then I got bored of fighting, so now I switch gears and figure if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em πŸ™‚

  8. says: Archana

    Ah – I thought bits of the story sounded like Oscar Wilde’s Importance of Being Earnest – and a google search revealed the director did get inspired!

    I will wait for the Tamil remake :-)!

    1. says: rads

      Oh yes, it was in the rolling credits alright. I was to add in a “acc to me a witty line” at the end, and forgot about it! :

      Hope they do take it in tamil. πŸ™‚

    1. says: rads

      lol, Not bad at all Vijay! Wife’s coached u well :p

      btw, as Cydonian pointed out, it sn’t the story, it’s the way the movie was done that makes it worthy. Try watching, wife will surely enjoy it πŸ™‚

      1. says: Vijay

        thank you thank you… it was learnt out of necessity…

        Wife doesnt watch golti pictures with me as I keep asking her “What’d he say again?”…

        Magesh Babu favorite at home as well

  9. says: Sangeetha

    cinema baagane undi kaani meeku Swati nachindantene naaku konchem surprising ga undi πŸ˜›

    naakaite aa ammayi chaala overaction candidate anipistundi πŸ™‚

    but, the movie is fun!

    1. says: rads

      lol, Swati nachaleda? Acho, I thought she did okay kada? Genelia laaga aravadukada? In any case, it’s my first time seeing her πŸ™‚

      1. says: Sangeetha

        indulo still ok lendi. she used to host a show called “Colours” on Maa TV. That was her claim to fame. And andulo Genelia kanna ekkuva overaction chesindi.

      1. says: Ramesh

        “Anand gets bugged with her constant Mahesh-japams and decides in a freak sense of humor introduce her to his friend Mahesh.”

        Aa Anand.

        1. says: rads

          LOL, character Anand aa? Neninka Actor Anand evarabba ani alochinchingu.
          Actualga cheppalante, that guy played his role to creepy perfection. Donga kollu patte vaadu laga unnadu 😐

  10. says: Jyothy


    I watched this movie last month and love it.
    Hightlights were the dialogues and the cool actors. Swati was so good in this movie. She did her role as the crazy girl smitten by mahesh babu very convincingly and naturally.

    Both the guys were funny too.

    The scene where the hero is fed up of being the Mr.Nice guy / peddarayudu was too much.

    Navvi navvi potta chekkalayyindi.

  11. says: bookworm

    i saw it too! it was definitely one of the better telugu movies I have seen. If you guys saw the end credits – the director wrote a dedication “To Oscar – for ‘wilde’ inspiration!” also I can totally relate to the Mahesh babu obsession. I’m pretty sure I will be very, very sad the day Siddharth gets married again. haha

  12. says: Maverick

    Yeah, naaku kooda chala baaga nachindi ….we missed it in theatres so watched the sloppy online version. one of the most hilarious movie in recent times, loved the comic timing of swathi and bhargavi.

    1. says: rads

      Right. Well, it isn’t a visually entertaining or hi-budget tech movie, so as long as the dialogs and visuals came through, it must have been good. πŸ™‚

  13. says: Praveen

    Hmm adapated frm Importance of being Earnest and I heard the director took 2 full years to script it. Will have to borrow a pirated DVD from a friend and watch it soon.

    It is sad that Bhargavi was killed by her husband last month. A very good talent lost!.

  14. says: Big Zed

    LOL!!! ROFL!!!

    I’ve been following you for some time and loving it!
    Had to say something on this one.
    This one makes me want to watch the movie except I don’t know telegu.

    1. says: rads

      Ain’t I glad you decided to delurk! See, how much fun it is to converse πŸ™‚

      It is unfortunate the language isn’t understood, but yes, you’d enjoy it nevertheless.
      Try πŸ™‚

  15. says: Sujatha

    I promise, I tried to follow it. Really. But I’m lost. Hopelessly.

    The last Telugu one I saw was that one with the guy in RDB- Nuvasthaanante Nenoddantaana? Cried my eyes out.

    1. says: rads

      LOL, that was Siddharth. Quite the hearthrob with the young girls. πŸ™‚

      Don’t blame you Sujatha, this movie is amazing purely for the language. Not your fault at all!:)

  16. says: Rads

    I loved this movie too…couldn’t stop laughing…everything is perfect in it, the characters, the script, editing, and music…i got the dvd too recently…nice post…

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