It was widely published that the makers of the movie Sri Siddhartha Gautama spent a colossal amount of money on this epic? film but I am confused as to what areas in the film the money was spent. Film looks like a low budget miscarriage of a movie rather than an epic movie. I regret the decision I took to watch the movie though I expected this type of a disappointment after seeing the list of names of the cast in the papers.
First, the movie was directed on a ridiculously weak script. Though it is mentioned at the beginning of the film that the script was approved by a large number of learned Buddhist dignitaries including monks, the script has many a flaw distorting the accepted story of the Prince Siddhartha on one hand and by creating a mess of a story without a natural flow on the other hand. I am not sure who to be blamed for this, either the script writer or the so called high class dignitaries.
There is no flow in the story which has a lot of abrupt incidents that are not connected well, similar to Professor Sunil Ariyarathna’s Kristhu Charithaya. Now that our filmmakers have made mockeries of both the Christ’s story and that of the Prince Siddhartha, they are left with only few other religious leaders’ life stories to mess up with.
Makeup and clothes don’t look attractive and I am curious if the clothes for the movie were bought from the hawkers at Pettah to cut the budget. The clothes don’t look suitable for a royal family at all.
So is the music of the movie. The background music is disastrous and there is not a single song in the movie that became a hit showing how poor the music composer was. Same can be said about the amateurish dance items of the film. I didn’t see the beauties that were in the history books in the royal dancing troupes. They were ordinary women with very poor dancing skills.
I don’t see the director taking any advantage by bringing second part of the movie up to the Prince’s renunciation of worldly pleasures and leaving the palace forward and then coming back to the birth of the prince.
Camera angles are so hopeless that they cut off heads of the main characters in many scenes. The same can be said about the weak lighting of the movie. The whole movie was filmed in darkness. Even the day scenes were not bright enough.
I don’t see a reason why the producers drafted in Indian cast for the film as there are enough local actors to make this disaster without the help of the Indian actors. Indians don’t add any value to the movie. The Indian actor who casts Siddhartha looks very lethargic, passive and dull and I wonder what happened to the handsome Prince Siddhartha who was supposed to be majestic, yet humble. It is a shame that Yashodhara had to be imported from India as if we can’t find someone prettier with better acting skills. Bringing in Ranjan Ramanayake has not damaged the film as much as I expected it to be. He doesn’t age throughout the film as in his real life. Prince Nanda, performed by Roshan Ranawana is in yet another childish performance as he has done throughout his career. Other Sri Lankan cast like Jeevan Kumaratunga, Wilson Gunarathne, Edwin Ariyadasa, Buddhdasa Vithanachchi, etc. hasn’t done any justice to the movie or the director hasn’t been able to get what is needed from them. Devadaththa, performed by an Indian actor is the only decent performance in the movie. It would have been better if he played Siddhartha’s role as he has the right body built of a strong prince.
In most of the scenes where Indian actors perform, the dialogues are heard as if dubbed for a stupid Indian teledrama to Sinhala. The voices are so unnatural and they are breaking words in sentences in wrong places.
The makeup artists have failed to depict a natural pregnant Queen Maya. They have made her belly look like a football. Even at the scene of the childbirth the sal tree doesn’t have a single flower. In the story we had learnt that seven lotus flowers were bloomed in the first seven steps of the prince but this is not so in the film. One can see this scene done superbly in the Hollywood movie Little Buddha where Keanu Reeves plays Siddhartha. The director could have taken some good help from this movie.
The death of Kanthaka, the horse is very unnatural. The director hasn’t been able to do even simple things like these. Rather than taking the camera to the story, the director harps on too much discussion within the palace walls making the movie boring.
Fight scenes are so ridiculous at the so called showing off of the talents of the prince so much so that I feel like they are the scenes of a Blackadder comedy.
Not showing Prince Rahula while he was the main focus of the scene is another big flaw. Nobody sees any reasons of doing that.
There is no excitement or climax at any stage of the film. This is one of the most boring films I have ever watched.
Since I cannot be as harsh as I wanted to be, I tried my best to keep the language civil while writing my review here.
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Do you know how I can get a hold of the movie? where can I buy it? Thank you!
This movie is not on DVD yet. May be in few months we will see it on DVD. I will let you know then. Maybe I could post you a copy. email me at email@example.com for more info.
“the script has many a flaw distorting the accepted story of the Prince Siddhartha”
-Which ones? Are you are professor in ancient history, and knows for a fact what really happened 2,600 years ago?
“Makeup and clothes don’t look attractive and I am curious if the clothes for the movie were bought at Pettah cloth sellers to cut the budget. The clothes don’t look suitable for a royal family at all.”
-This is a Buddhist movie after all, not a all dancing, all singing Bollywood eye candy. And I don’t think the royals of 2,600 years ago were flushed with luxurious clothing, considering the technology of that time!
“The Indian actor who casts Siddhartha looks very lethargic, passive and dull and I wonder what happened to the handsome Prince Siddhartha who was supposed to be majestic, yet humble.”
-If you want actor to be mean, vigorous and full of heated passions and not serene, go and watch action movies or gangsters. That will satisfy your hot blood!
“There is no excitement or climax at any stage of the film. This is one of the most boring films I have ever watched.”
-There is no fireworks, no magical happenings as He achieved Enlightenment. That’s the point of Buddhism!
GO AND STUDY THE Q’RAN INSTEAD! IT WILL SATISTY YOU WITH ALL THE PASSION, GRANDEUR, MURDER, MAYHEM AND PASSION!
I wrote what I felt after watching the movie. You have the right to express your views.
what i like to say is i was able to enjoy the movie very well because i did not occupied my mind trying to find ‘fatal’ flaws in your opinion.maybe you should practice more ;how to enjoy the moment.
what i like to say is i enjoyed the film very much because i did not try to see fatal flaws while watching it.maybe you should practice more ;how to enjoy ‘the moment’.
oh i just wish who ever you are may you be able to enjoy ‘the moment’ while watching a movie.finding faults and enjoying at the same time can not be done.nothing is perfect.it is just another movie.the real thing is within us.i think everyone knows that deep in their heart/mind.