Any movie can became a good brand ambassador of itself by major concentration on freshness in story idea and conceptualisation. When we get even a similar story to the previously seen films, we enjoy watching them on screen as the fresh energy acts in synergy with chemistry of leads and also, the peculiarity in characters chosen keeps the momentum alive. This is what we were hit with by Pelli Choopulu, an expected breeze of fresh country air. The production team came up with new film, Mental Madilo, promising a homely entertainer once again. Let’s see how it panned out ..
You can give choices to any person but not Aravind (Sri Vishnu). From an young age, he even gets confused to choose between red shirt or yellow one if he is left with choices. He doesn’t know how to judge merit or even go with his gut as he falls prey to the lack of conviction towards one choice. Hence, his father (Sivaji Raja) has to decide things for him and even his mother has to make it easy.
He is also extremely shy with women and that is because of an embarassing situation in his younger days. He can’t even speak to them and his father worries about him getting married. They search for 3 years and then find, Jahnavi (Nivetha Peturaj) for him. She likes him despite his shy nature and he opens up a lot due to her. He shares everything with her but one day, he asks for her to cancel their engagement. Why did he do so? Is there another girl in this story? Watch the movie on screen to know more..
Nivetha Peturaj is a value addition to pretty performers in Telugu Cinema. She livens up the screen with her infectious smile and takes care of the proceedings whenever they slide out of control. She springs a surprise with her honest performance as a forward thinking girl who falls in love with a shy guy.
Sri Vishnu has always been a limited person on screen. His expressions are even more limited to him lookimg into blank spaces with wooden exoressions. In this movie, cleverly it is character trait and he also tries hard to show a believable expression once he needs to do so and for him trying , we can say he is on a good path.
Amrutha as Renu is not useful in this dynamic as she seems to be an after thought than inclusive from the beginning. She seems to be a good actress but the writing did not allow her to go beyond clichés. Sivaji Raja scores more marks among all the other actors.
Cinematography by Varadaraman is inconsistent to say the least. He really falls flat when he needed to capture the beauty of Mumbai. He needs to learn more about reflective lighting and ambiance in outdoor setting and if he learns that aspect, he will shine better as his indoor skills seem to be second to none.
Music by Prasanth Vihari is not an ear sore or a haunting masterpiece. It tries to follow the narrative and keep it simple and effective. But few choices don’t really match up to the film and we forget the songs as we walk out of the theatres. He needed to come up with much more effective back ground score for some scenes as they lack in impact.
Editing by Viplav is more in sync with what director wanted than script demanded. Few scenes could have been removed as they don’t make any difference to the narrative. An editor needs to identify such flaws and alert the team too. Somehow he seems to have gone with the director’s demands than making a good cut.
Writer-director, Vivek Athreya got his story idea worked out well in the first hour but he missed to bring the same novelty to more cliched second hour. The resolution point had to be rushed in few melodramatic cuts and in a rather not so funny scene in the end. It needed much more depth as it involves trust of a girl and a new relationship that had to blossom.
After the initial conflict he tries to cleverly set up and foreshadow the second hour but overtly predictable tone dilutes the impact further and further. It is the protagonist who needed to understand what he needs between attraction and love but making it as a choice, writer undermines his own story.
Nivetha Peturaj’s performance
Sivaji Raja comedy
First hour sequences where love blossoms between main leads.
Effective chemistry between the leads.
Not many relatable scenes in second hour
Old world approach in conclusion.
Sri Vishnu might be trying his hand at different types of films as much as he can but he needs to come out of his single expression mould acting and characters to show off his versatility. This time in a more old premises and short film type handling he tries to score a good hit. Even though movie starts off on a fresh note, ends up in cliches due to predictability. Still, a nice first hour makes it a fun weekend popcorn movie.