Venky Mama Movie Review:
What do we don’t expect from a Masala movie: deep philosophical thoughts, moral dilemmas, ironies of life, etc. On the flip side what we do expect from it: our heroes doing death-defying stunts, songs, and comedy in whatever form they come in, rousing emotional dialogues and hero saving the world and heroine after the whole army failed to do. But we go and watch them on the first day because masala movies are not about what they show but about how they show it to us. Any average moviegoer can easily predict the twists and turns coming from a mile away but we still wait from them because they give us the emotional high and gratification. We don’t expect logic in the story or much from the story itself as long as it is done with some grace.
Bobby’s Venky Mama is unabashedly a masala movie but it has fallen flat on its face when it comes to execution. It neither takes itself seriously nor does it ask us to. It has an idea to start with and stops right there.
This movie was written as a combination of its two stars. Daggubati Venkatesh
and Naga Chaitanya
. Chaitanya plays a nephew to Venkatesh (as in real life). Something tells you that this combination should work. It does but only to an extent because they don’t have anything to work with. This movie rises and falls with Venkatesh’s performance. Actors are as good as the lines they had given. Stars don’t need lines. Their mere presence turns a mediocre scene to a bearable one.
Venkatesh who is an affable star and a sensible actor tries to pull this repetitive and crass comedy as much as he can but even his star power is not enough to save this movie from its director. Naga Chaitanya, who is getting better and better with each movie, holds his own in dramatic and intense moments but pales in comparison to his uncle in comedy. There isn’t much to talk about the leading ladies. Neither stands out from the rest of the cast too (which include great actors like Nassar and Rao Ramesh). They merely do their bit.
Does it mean the movie is totally bad? Now there are few good moments here and there but were not given enough time to breathe. Editorial choices really baffle us. Crucial moments that were supposed to make us empathise with the story were cramped up and supposed comedy scenes were given enough time to drench us with their absurdity. Songs are only a few and they don’t disturb the flow of the story as there is none. Cinematography by Prasad Murella gives a sense of atmosphere and grandness to save the climax from becoming a total spoof.
Venky Mama like many others shows us that the Masala genre is the most abused genre of them all. Setting a combination with a workable idea is not merely enough. Setting the bar low and not crossing it is a bad thing. We hope they realize that we do like our old wine in a new bottle but it should be a good looking one too.