High on the success of 'Pataas', Kalyan Ram returns with an action-comedy whose outmoded story line tilts in favour of a Kona Venkat spin. The hero is actually a 'sher', but a good deal of (un)creative energies are spent not on propping up the character but on making references to "Anna garu", "Rajini sir", Balakrishna (footage from 'Sri Rama Rajyam' and punch line from 'Legend', no less), Murari Mahesh Babu, Pawan Kalyan, Jr NTR, SRK's lungi dance, and even a legendary scene from a legendary film in which Kalyan Ram had acted!
Gowtham (Kalyan Ram) is a son of Rao Ramesh, a builder. His mother and a brother complete his family. But before that, there is Puppy (played by Vikramjeet Virk), Hyderabad-based gangster from Kolkata-based Dada's (played by Mukesh Rishi) world. Gowtham rubs Puppy on the wrong side and in a near-funny showdown outside the Registrar's office, the latter declares his intention to interfere with Gowtham's love affair, if and when Gowtham falls in love with someone. Sher soul that he is, Gowtham gladly accepts the challenge. In the event, he falls in love with Nandini (Sonal Chauhan of 'Legend' and 'Pandaga Chesko' fame). From this time onwards, it is a matter of existential crisis for Puppy and Dada.
Director Mallikarjun borrows from the Kona Venkat idiom, making Brahmanandam constantly be astounded of the hero's supposed genius. It is inconceivable, though, as to what is so intelligent about the hero getting a doctor do his job by subjecting him to shock treatment. Twice, the intelligent hero uses NTR's mask to scare the daylights out of Shafi, who neither looks paranoid nor perplexed in his role. Such ideas are the stuff of TV serials, if not a primary school skit.
As much as the writer (Diamond Ratna Babu) tries to project Puppy and Dada as a comedy villain and a ruthless don, respectively, the proceedings are milk-and-water, never going beyond the level of puerile antics. In one scene, Puppy is seen rehearsing for marriage even as the cameraman has no clue how to make Fish Venkat, the bride, look like Fish Venkat. If Tagubothu Ramesh overdoes his booze act, Raghu Kunche, Duvvasi Mohan, and Prabhas Sreenu as Puppy's funny sidekicks get to do a thankless slapstick or two. Ali is thoroughly wasted in a role that borders on the imbecilic. Prithvi Raj shines yet again on the strength of his own dialogue delivery, not because he gets to speak a worthy line or two.
A hero can say things like ".. kani inka ae tappu chesina kodatha", but such kind of behaviour requires a thoroughgoing characterization so as to have an impact. In a repeat of the Antyakshari-kinda comedy, the funny sidekicks (two of them from the 'Gabbar Singh' batch) are seen striving hard to relive that scene. But the scene itself ends abruptly.
Sonal Chouhan plays a bubbly youngster with a passion for photography and an OCD for taking too many selfies, and, given her standard and IQ level, our intelligent Gowtham is a perfect match. One photograph taken extempore even becomes the cover picture of an India Today edition. All their genius come in handy when Puppy catches them red-handed as they are vying to kiss each other despite the strenuous efforts of the buffoons to stop them!
It is not clear whether Brahmanandam's nakhras irked the hero from the beginning or not. This is how sketchy and half-baked the screenplay is. As for the songs, Thaman's good songs have been squandered away in settings that won't wow even a Rip Wan Winkle who went into coma before Hyderabad's first amusement park, forget Ramoji Film City, came into existence.
MS Narayana as the lungi Baba and Rao Ramesh in a senti act are the two takeaways from second half.
Kalyan Ram spreads himself think trying to do comedy, emotion and action with no effective backing from the director and the dialogue writer. His punch lines fall flat, almost tasting like mothballs. Sonal cackles up the screen, but she can't be trusted to act.
Mukesh Rishi passes muster, like other characters.
Thaman is one technician who does a good job, while the cinematography is not impressive.
Verdict: A stale line that is given a Kona Venkat spin, a thankless spin at that. Despite Brahmi and a bevy of other comedians, the film doesn't come into its own.
తెలుగు వెర్షన్ రివ్యూ
Rating: 1.8 / 5.0