Saptapadi (1981 film)

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Saptapadi poster.jpg
Theatrical Release poster
Directed byK. Vishwanath
Produced byBhimavarapu Buchhireddy
Written byJandhyala (dialogues)
Screenplay byK. Viswanath
Story byK. Viswanath
StarringJ.V. Somayajulu
Allu Rama Lingaiah
Sabita Bhamidipati
P. Ravi Shankar
Music byK. V. Mahadevan
Veturi Sundararama Murthy (Lyrics)
Edited byG. G. Krishna Rao
Distributed byJyoti Art Creations
Release date

Saptapadi (English: Seven steps) is a 1981 Telugu drama film written and directed by Kashinathuni Vishwanath. The film garnered the Nargis Dutt Award for Best Feature Film on National Integration.[1][2] The film is not only about the seven steps that one takes to become a part of the institution of marriage and a ritualistic exercise that completes the act of shedding the bachelorhood and entering a more stable state, but talks about an individual's journey breaking away from the shackles from the conservatism to finding a path of understanding, encompassing and enlightenment. The film was premiered at the International Film Festival of India, and the AISFM film festival.[3]


Saptapadi deals with the transformation of an individual so devoted to (mired in) the concept of rituals, that it takes an act of God (will be discussed shortly) for him to realize the true spirit behind the rituals and true meaning of the prayers. Yajulu is a man of great conviction. According to him rules and customs, that have been passed down generations thus standing the test of the time, are there for a reason and hence are immutable; traditions are trademarks of a culture and customs, its signature. He does not mind losing his daughter for his principles.

He is well into his twilight years which give him even more reason to not mend his ways. In his footsteps follows his Gaurinadha (grandchild from his son), gearing up to be a head priest at the local temple. Yajulu's will prevails over Hema's (grandchild from his daughter) wish and Gauri and Hema end up being married. However, Hema is secretly in love with a flutist, who is not of her caste. The brilliance of Viswanath comes full fore at this point, when on the first night, Gauri witnesses Durga devi in Hema, and walks out of the room completely shaken up. Gaurinadha, being an ardent devotee of the Devi, realizes that his wife is in love with another man, hence she is like a mother to him, nothing more, nothing less. This act of God triggers Yajulu's thought process to seriously question, for the first time in his life, the validity of his position on matters that involve caste, creed and religion, justifying the steps that Yajulu takes one a time, from the first one in trying to understand Hema's real interests till the last one, when he sees her off with her love interest on the boat.

The crux of the whole film is contained in a beautiful conversation that happens between the characters played by Allu Rama Lingaiah and J.V. Somayajulu.



All music composed by K. V. Mahadevan.

1."Akhilandeswari Chamundeswari"Veturi Sundararama MurthyS. P. Balasubramaniam, P. Susheela 
2."Ayigiri Nandini"Adi SankaracharyaS. P. Balasubramaniam 
3."Bhamane Satyabhamane"Veturi Sundararama MurthyS. Janaki 
4."Govullu Tellana"Veturi Sundararama MurthyS. Janaki, S. P. Balasubramaniam 
5."Marugelara O Raghava"ThyagarajaS. Janaki 
6."Nemaliki Nerpina Nadakalivi" (Peacock dance)Veturi Sundararama MurthyS. Janaki 
7."Om Jatavedase" (Sri Durga Suktam) S. P. Balasubramaniam, S. Janaki 
8."Vrepalliya Eda Jhalluna"Veturi Sundararama MurthyS. P. Balasubramaniam, P. Susheela 
9."Ye Kulamu Needante"Veturi Sundararama MurthyS. P. Balasubramaniam, S. Janaki 


Year Nominee / work Award Result
1981 Kasinathuni Viswanath Nargis Dutt Award for Best Feature Film on National Integration Won
1981 Kasinathuni Viswanath Nandi Award for Best Screenplay Writer Won
1981 Kasinathuni Viswanath Filmfare Award for Best Film – Telugu Won


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