Raj Shetty, who plays one of the lead characters, is also the director of the crime drama set to release on November 19.

raj shettyRaj Shetty in a still from Garuda Gamana Vrishabha Vahana
Flix Film Tuesday, October 19, 2021 - 15:24

The trailer of the Kannada film Garuda Gamana Vrishabha Vahana starring Raj Shetty, of Ondu Motteya Kathe fame, and Rishab Shetty dropped on Friday, October 15 and has already garnered 2.5 million views in four days. The trailer promises a gripping crime drama set in Mangaluru. Directed by Raj Shetty, the movie is set to release theatrically on November 19.

The trailer is set to a foreboding English song (specifically designed for the trailer) and traces the lives of Shiva (Raj Shetty) and his friend Hari, portrayed by Rishab Shetty. The raw and intense shots in the trailer encapsulate the world of gangsters in coastal Karnataka. Raj, who is from Mangaluru, and Rishab, who is from Kundapur, are on familiar ground in these roles with their accents and mannerisms on point. The film is based on a Yakshagana play depicting an ego clash between Shiva and Hari.

Throughout the trailer, there are many glimpses of life in coastal Karnataka. The many shots of Hulivesha dancers are a throwback to the Tarantino-inspired Rakshit Shetty film Ulidavaru Kandanthe, which was one of the first recent Kannada films to capture the popular cultural dance form onscreen. The trailer focuses on a child dancing rhythmically to Hulivesha and shows Hulivesha characters in the background in other scenes involving the main characters.

However, many viewers pointed out that along with the two main leads, most of the characters are men with little or no women characters present in the film.

Yet, the popularity of the trailer is not a surprise. It has been four years since Raj Shetty directed Ondu Motteya Kathe, his debut venture. OMK was widely praised for its heart-warming sincerity with Raj portraying the quintessential Mangalurean man who is shy and filled with insecurities. Since his debut wowed critics, Raj has acted in a series of films like Gubbi Mele Brahmastra, Mayabazaar 2016, Katha Sangama, and also wrote dialogues for Rishab Shetty’s Sarkari Hi. Pra. Shaale, Kasaragodu. But in interviews, he has admitted his frustration at not being able to bring the shades of OMK into his acting roles.

In Garuda Gamana Vrishabha Vahana, Raj’s character Shiva is closer to the Kubera he portrayed in Mayabazaar 2016 alongside Prakash Raj. But it is Rishab Shetty’s role that intrigues in the trailer, acting as a calming force to Raj’s violent streaks. Rishab debuted as a lead actor in Bell Bottom as Detective Divakara, an earnest constable by profession and a detective at heart.

The trailer’s popularity also indicates that there is an appetite for crime sagas set in Mangaluru. Rakshit Shetty recently revealed that he is filming Richard Anthony, the sequel to Ulidavaru Kandanthe.

If things had gone to plan, Garuda Gamana Vrishabha Vahana would have released in June but the pandemic pushed the release to November, with Raj insisting that the film should release theatrically and that it is meant for the big screen rather than on OTT. The trailer has only increased the anticipation for the film and it remains to be seen if Raj Shetty and Rishab Shetty can deliver on their interesting premise.

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