Sai Korapati’s Production Tungabhadra is a tale of village politics between two big families and a parallel love story between the village head’s daughter and his trusted henchman. At a glance, you’d probably guess what's going on, the predictable love story between the lead pair who hail from immiscible parts of the society, and how their love has to bear the brunt of larger scheme of things. But director debutant Srinivas Krishna Gogineni adds in touches of elegant rustic drama bringing forth the village flavor beautifully. You’d probably be reminded of the more off-beat Tamil film Subramanyapuram 1980 (Annamayapuram in Telugu) that brought out the raw and brutally honest truths about villages and their revenges that get passes down generations. Tungabhadra was a more commercial telugu version of that with a sweet love story laced into it.
Adith Arun makes a come back after his previous minor debuts in Telugu and Tamil with this film and surely makes his presence felt. He commands attention with his mature performance in the film, be it with intense scenes with strong dialogue delivery (Nenu Gurtupattam Guripettam okkate he says - identifying is just as good as fixed my target) or emotional scenes with just expressions (tannu navvute koti mallele virisinattu untai ra.. he tells his friend her smile is alike a thousand jasmine buds blossoming. There's a fun bit where he desbribes the girl's eyes like saphiries, neelalu and his friend teases saying they're pelalu instead, pop corn, because they pop out so much!). He looks a little like actor Ram but he surely makes his own style of acting predominate any resemblances that distract you. Dimple Chopade suited her role of a small town girl with her dusky skin and Indian features. Satyaraju was commanding in his role and supports the film well as the village head and a political leader.
Music is a big plus for the film as Hari Goura adds in some catchy tunes. The background track for everytime love blossoms between the lead pair is particularly a nice one. A few things that spoil the dish are some forcible comedy scenes like the bit with Saptagiri in it. He is an individual candidate trying to score a few votes and his scene seemed inserted for unnecessary comedy. But otherwise, the Andhra accent and the humor laced in dialogues do lighten the atmosphere. The story is a little too predictable but instead of a hunky dory ending, the director goes on less-treaded path and this adds a nice touch.