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Winner Review

Winner Review
Banner:
Lakshmi Narasimha Productions
Cast:
Sai Dharam Tej, Rakul Preet Singh, Jagapathi Babu, Mukesh Rishi, Ali and Vennela Kishore
Direction:
Gopichand
Production:
Srinivas (Bujji), Tagore Madhu
Movie:
Winner

Winner

IndiaGlitz [Friday, February 24, 2017 • Telugu] Comments

Winner Movie Review

'Winner' hits the screens today.  Here is our review:

Story:

As a child, Siddhu (Sai Dharam Tej) was separated from his doting dad Mahender Reddy (Jagapathi Babu) by his scheming grandpa (Mukesh Rishi) so that Mahender takes up jockeying years after he left it after marrying his love interest (Kalyani in a brief role) against Mukesh Rishi's wishes.

While Siddhu grows up to be a father-hating orphan by choice, the rich dad keeps endlessly waiting for his son to come back.

Twenty years pass like this.  This is when Siddhu falls in love with Sitara (Rakul) and ends up falling in a sweet trap she lays just to escape being married to a terrific jockey (played by Thakur Anoop Singh) against her wishes.

The trap results in the entry of Mahender Reddy in Siddhu's life.  The second half is about what follows this twist.

Analysis:

The film is torn between a story smelling of old-style formula and a backdrop (horse racing) that is supposed to give it a trendy feel.  While the backdrop becomes a footnote, the story is thrown to the winds, with no emotional core to the love story and a forgetful attitude towards Mukesh Rishi's character.

What are the main characters doing with the comedians when they should be working towards ending their existential problems is something you will never understand.  The amount of time the hero spends in teaching this or that comedian an inconsequential lesson is disproportionately more than the amount of time he spends on learning jockeying and winning his game of a lifetime!

Rakul is supposed to be a woman of substance, but all that she can think of when Singham Sujatha (Prudhvi) wields his gun is go to a restaurant with him.  And until our hero abducts her and takes her to the sports authority building, she can't even go about winning the gold medal that has been her dream.  What's more, she pulls off a super-quick victory in the race so that there is enough time for a leisurely duet.

Abburi Ravi thinks he is writing for Balakrishna and squanders away superb dialogues like this one on Prudhvi: 'Records lo na peru undatam entra.. Na peru meede records untayi'.  In a stretched comedy track involving Tej, Prudhvi and Rakul, the comedian manages to induce a sense of deja vu at best.  Perhaps his directors are taking him far too seriously nowadays.  What is the point in making him do gravity-defying fights?  Are our directors forgetting the point of a parody?

The second half was expected to have its highs in terms of both heroism and sentiment.  While a couple of scenes involving Tej and Jagapathi Babu make a mark, we somehow are taken aback by the film's descent into hackneyed story-telling.  Even Ali's track evokes comedy not because of the situations but because of the dialogues.

Tej's Mega family backdrop is invoked almost regularly.  His very introduction scene has a Chiranjeevi reference in the form of a variation of the 'Rough adistha' punch line.

Although the hero does a fine job overall, one feels being slow in dialogue-delivery and dances (the dance choreography is off the mark, to put it mildly) don't seem to suit his temperament.  Rakul, who is seen more often than a heroine would in today's films, is convincing as a glamorous performer.  Jagapathi Babu is at his usual best, whereas Thakul Anoop is very promising and very likely to stay here.  Mukesh Rishi fails to put an impressive show.  Anasuya's special song passes muster.  People may not like to see her as a spoilt brat, not to speak of how a farmer-loving hero can sing paeans of such a brat moments after beating up her friends!  Vennela Kishore, Raghu Babu, Hari Teja, Suresh, Sonia Agarwal and Kalyani fit the bill.  Bithiri Sathi makes an okayish cameo.

Thaman's songs are hardly the kind of saving grace they were in films like 'Sarrainodu'.  Chota K Naidu's cinematography is overall fine, but the CG contamination could have been avoided in many frames.

Verdict:

'Winner', made to a done-to-death template, works due to some comedy moments here and there.  Tej takes up a tough role.  Gopichand Malineni's treatment falls short of expectations.

విన్నర్ తెలుగు వెర్షన్ మూవీ రివ్యూ

Rating: 2.5 / 5.0

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