Osey Ramulamma story at a glance
1997 was a time when Vijayashanthi was in tremendous form as a female lead in Tollywood. Her image was elevated to new levels with films like Kartavyam, Pratighatana, Asayam and so on. Precisely at such moment, ace director Dasari Narayana Rao began this project. The story was not that new then. It deals with the struggle of Telangana people. During the reign of Nizam dynasty, and later in the realm of local rich Dora clan, Telangana region was not devoid of many Ramulammas. But, until then there was no film which depicted this issue realistically. Bapu attempted such theme in his venture Kaliyuga Ravanasurudu but this was something very different. The film amazingly represents the Telangana History and culture in language as well as the dressing style. However, the Telangana struggle was not the only inspiration for Dasari Narayana Rao to make this film. The story of Phoolan Devi, a daring lady who showed a real rebellion to bandits as well as the government in Northern India also forms a inspiration to it. Getting raped in childhood, and witnessing lot of struggle in early life, Phoolan Devi grew up with vengeance as her bread and butter and brutally killed those who showed such suffering to her. She is one courageous woman who held her head high by doing justice to her vengeance .Here, Dasari took the backdrop of Doras in Telangana for his film instead.
The character of Ramulamma is a representation of backward classes in Telangana Region. She works as a maid in a Dora’s residence as a slave. She is an innocent young girl who is quite obedient towards her mistress. But misfortune hits her so badly. She gets raped by the Dora for whom she works as a slave. Nobody arrives for her rescue or show a tinge of sympathy towards her- when she needed it the most. It is when Komaranna, a revolutionary singer comes to her help by giving her strong support. He teaches her to rebel against the people who tormented her and gives her heaps of courage. He also teaches her that nothing is lost in a combat , except for the vengeance which is embedded in every nerve of her. But Komaranna dies in a battle with the government which despises any resistance, or questions their wrongdoings. As a result, Ramulamma is left all alone yet again. But already by then, Ramulammma becomes more of a powerful force under the training of Komaranna. Hence, she dedicates her life in searching for those people who made her life an irreparable suffering.
Coming to the lead role played by Vijayashanthi, she showed her acting par excellence in the film. Films like Kartavyam and Pratighatana showed only certain shades in her acting skills. But this film has Vijayashanthi play multiple shades such as innocence, helplessness, sadness, revenge, anger in her character. Her histrionics change accordingly for each of the emotions required for the scene. Director’s brilliance is evident in showing her according to her age and situation in the film. Vijayshanthi undoubtedly blended with ease in every respect for the role of Ramulamma. Dasari Narayana Rao is fantastic as Komaranna who boosts the confidence and revenge of Ramulamma. Ramireddy and Ashok Kumar acted in the negative roles which still bring chills to the spine of the viewer. Experienced actors like Ankusham Rami Reddy, Ashok Kumar, Narra, Shankuntala and so on gave memorable performances
Though the story looks quite routine on paper, Dasari Narayana Rao used all his expertise and experience and made a wonderful script. He included issues like Telangana Struggle, Naxalites resistance, inspirational songs for the common people, Doras and Dorasanis cruelty in the film.
All these aspects are one level. But it is the music director Vandemataram Srinivas, who in real life is quite popular in the rebellious songs speaking about common people’s struggle. His tunes gave the much needed flavor for the film. The title song of the film reverberated in every household for many days after the film was released. Suddala Ashok Teja, a revolutionary song lyric writer penned six songs for the film. Every song in the film is a classic. It is interesting to note that popular music director M.M.Keeravani sang a song for the film. Shyam K.Naidu’s cinematography was breathtaking, with the beauty of Telangana Region explored by him through the camera.
Cast and Crew:
Rami Reddy- Landlord Jagannayak Patwari
Dasari Narayana Rao- Komaranna
Narra Venkateswara Rao –Ramaswamy
Shakuntala- Ramaswamy’s Wife
Ashok Kumar- Landlord’s Son
Writer and Director: Dasari Narayana Rao
Cinematography – Shyam K Naidu
Lyrics –Suddhala Ashok Teja
Music- Vandemataram Srinivas
Producer- Dasari Film University
Release Date- March 1997