The romance and romantic comedy genres are the most profitable throughout the world when it works out. Everybody loves to watch a decent romantic comedy film. The filmmakers don’t step back when it comes to rom-coms so they churned out Hundreds of such films in Tollywood. But how many of the Telugu romance movies are versatile is arguable. Considering that the lead pair have to meet and eventually fall in love, and finally get married towards the climax, the writers have limited scope for creating conflict. Most of the writers tend to follow the successful films in order to impress the audience.
Conflict in Telugu romance movies:
The conflict is rom-coms is basically of 2 types: the personal issues between the couple and the family problems. The personal issues are mostly the fear of losing the friendship forever (Tholiprema, Nuvve Kavali etc) and ego (Kushi, Fidaa, Oohalu Gusagusalade etc). The family problems range from the inter-caste marriages, factionist background, ideological differences to the broken relationships. We rarely witness triangle love stories in Telugu cinema at present, but they used to rule the industry in mid-90s. The retelling of classic stories like Devadas-Parvathy, Laila-Majnu, Romeo-Juliet etc are made into films once in a while.
The template of Telugu romance movies:
The most used template of rom-coms in Telugu cinema has a profound structure. The story starts with introduction of lead actors, moves to the love story with multiple segments of comedy and eventual breakup at the interval. Generally, the friends of lead actors generate some humor with minor subtracks. The second half narrates hero traveling to heroine’s home and convincing everyone to finally approve their marriage. The comedy tracks in second half are mostly contain the orthodox family of heroine and modern or silly nature of the hero. As it has more scope for family drama, romance and comedy, the writers repeated this story structure countless times. The first major use of this template is in the Bollywood epic love story ‘Dilwale Dulhaniya Lejayenge’. The film was a massive success at box-office and the audience still talk about the film. The story structure first appeared in Tollywood in ‘Nuvvu Naaku Nachav’. But the significant difference between the two is that the Telugu version starts when Venkatesh arrives a few days earlier to attend the marriage of Aarthi Agarwal and falls in love with her. The film has been a blockbuster and started the trend of such films.
Current trends in Telugu romance movies:
There are tons of films made with same pattern which continues to this day. The success of the film depends heavily on the comedy tracks and songs in the film. The only variation to the story structure is in ‘Bommarillu’ where the major conflict is between father and son, and the heroine lives in hero’s house for a week to convince everyone. The recent film, ‘Ninnu Kori’, too has a similar structure but the hero, instead, tries to pursue the married heroine. ‘Mahanubhavudu’ adds OCD to hero’s character by following the same structure. Most of the films with this pattern are successful giving confidence to upcoming writers to experiment with this template. The trend is changing recently and the industry is inclining towards intimacy and intense love stories. However, the hero convincing entire family to succeed in his love is the overused formula which never gets old.