'Andhhagadu' hits the screens today. Here is our review of the entertainer.
Gautham (Raj Tarun) is an orphaned and blinded youngster who was condemned to be brought up in an orphanage as a child. He had three all-weather friends in the orphanage.
As a youngster, Gautham yearns for a soulmate and two eyes. One fine day, he happens to meet the ever-so-helping Nethra (Hebbah Patel), a doctor by profession. Pretending to be a person with normal eye sight, he woos her. In no time, the good doc falls in love with Gautham, only to discover at the earliest that he is blind.
She dumps him in a huff.
The heart-broken Gautham starts disliking her, but as Nethra still loves him, she arranges for an eye transplantation. In no time, Gautham can see.
Strangely, Gautham can also see a ghost (Rajendra Prasad as Ranjith Kulkarni) and a car in his mysterious dreams.
Meanwhile, Babjee (played by Raja Ravindra), a dreaded goon who is a law unto himself, is found ruthlessly eliminating those opposed to his commercial interests.
Why is the ghost after Gautham? What does it demand of him? What is Raja Ravindra up to? Answers to such questions are found in the second half.
To be sure, 'Andhhagadu' keeps on misleading the audience in the name of delivering twists. There is a difference between the kind of twists you see in an authentic thriller and those seen in movies that overdo twists for the sake of it. While the twists in the former are organic to the story, in the latter, they are frivolous.
Writer-turned-director Veligonda Srinivas makes an all-out effort at hiding till the climax the formula that is writ large over the story. When the formula arrives, the film is shoddily narrated, complete with a tempo-stripping comedy scene involving Raj Tarun and Rajendra Prasad.
While some of the 'nautanki' the hero does is unnecessary, a dumb heroine who is extremely Mother Teresa-eque in helping two young drunk men during a night because they might just get hurt or hit someone in a road accident is beyond pathetic. How come every girl just starts behaving the way the hero wants film after film? Are they robots? Remember, scenes later, the same Miss Large-Hearted speaks so insensitively when she comes to know that the hero is blind.
In the name of comedy, most writers strip the love story of emotional strength, as if a comedy doesn't need touching emotions.
'Andhhagadu' scores to the extent that humour quotient keeps it going in the first half. Raj Tarun shines in the whole rom-com track. Although the Hebbah pair-up is getting repetitive, the actors delivers good with his ease in acting and dialogue-delivery.
Despite the fact that formula is waiting to take over from time to time, the funny twists regarding Rajendra Prasad's identity keep the proceedings going.
Ashish Vidhyarthi as a doctor is leveraged for some comedy and it works.
The second half takes a beating in the first 30 minutes or so, mainly owing to an overdose of Nata Kiriti. He has long got self-conscious. One wonders why most directors can't see it.
It's Raj Tarun all the way. One has to give it to him for working on the body language of a blind man well. Except in songs, he makes a mark with respect to all other scenes. It's a commercial script that he gets to do, including action. Hebbah Patel looks good, but gets to play a character with no much scope for acting. We have seen the best of Raja Ravindra in the past; he doesn't offer much here. Comedian Sathya is OK. Sayaji Shinde and others fit the bill. Paruchuri Venkateswara Rao is adorable.
Shekar Chandra's music is underwhelming. An item song can be purged out and it wouldn't make any difference. B Rajasekhar's cinematography delivers goods.
A screenplay that banks on twists and Raj Tarun's acting skills, 'Andhhagadu' will entertain you if you are looking for some popcorn stuff. You could complain about the jaded element that raises its head towards the climax, but if you can be 'blind' to its flaws, give it a try.