Atma Balam features B.Saroja in a right balance between glamour and performance in the midst of senior actors like ANR and Jaggaiah with great ease. Jaggaiah portrayed the role of a psycho which became a defining role in his career.
Rama Rao (Y.B.Raju) is an affluent gentleman and he has a wife named Jagadeeshwari (Kannamba). The couple has a son Kumar (Jaggaiah). During Kumar’s childhood, an unfortunate incident happens in the house and as a result Rama Rao commits suicide. Kumar witnesses this horrific incident and it impacts him very badly. Because of this Kumar turns to become a psycho. Jagadeeshwari sends her son for treatment under a popular psychiatrist (Gummadi ) in a different town. To the society she tells as if her son is studying in a boarding school. As time passes by, Kumar grows up into a loner with his father’s memories and a peculiar person. He becomes very adamant in getting whatever he yearns for. If he fails to get so, he doesn’t hesitate to even kill the opposite person or abuse himself. Kumar has a habit of writing his innermost feelings in a diary. Meanwhile, Jagadeeshwari has a huge factory where an intelligent and handsome young engineer Anand (ANR) works. Anand falls for a beautiful woman Jaya (B.Saroja) and the story takes a real turn when Kumar arrives in the town. Jagadeeswhari requests Anand to reform Kumar and his attitude. Anand forms good friendship with Kumar and plans to transform him with the help of Jaya. But Kumar falls for Jaya and lusts for her. When Anand tries to explain Kumar that it is not possible, Kumar tries to even kill Anand. But eventually, he kills himself. The crime falls on Anand and he is given death sentence by the court. Just before Anand faces the gallows, Kumar’s diary is noticed and Jaya proves that Anand is innocent based on it. The film ends on a happy note by Anand being proven innocent.
ANR is extremely believable as the young engineer and an honest lover Anand. He shares a great chemistry with B.Saroja and excels in scenes involving Jaggiah. B.Saroja gets a character which has both glamour and performance. She does a great job in the climax scenes. Jaggaiah is brilliant as the psychotic personality Kumar and delivers par excellence. Kannamba, Gummadi, Y.B.Raju are good in their respective roles. Relangi, Girija and Ramana Reddy offer good comedy relief in a serious themed film of this sort.
Athreya’s dialogues and lyrics act as a lifeline for an interesting film of this sort. His lines in emotional scenes work wonders. K.V.Mahadevan’s melodious music became a strong pillar for the film with songs like ‘Chitapata Chinukulu’,’Gillikajjalu Pettukune Ammayi’,’Parugulu Teese Vayasunaku’,’Ekkadiki Pothavu Chinnavada’ and ‘Naalugu Kallu Rendainayi’ becoming super hits. Direction by V.Madhusudana Rao is best as always.
Cast and Crew:
Rama Rao- Y.B.Raju
Comedians -Relangi,Girja, Ramana Reddy
Dialogues and Lyrics: Athreya
Based On- Bengali Film “Agni Samksaram”
Producer: V.B.Rajendra Prasad
Director: V.Madhusudana Rao
Banner: Jagapati Pictures
Release Date: 9th January 1964
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