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'Dookudu' Review: 'Drama'tic Magic

Film: Dookudu
Rating: 3.25/5
Banner:
14 Reels Entertainment
Cast: Mahesh Babu, Samantha, Prakash Raj, Sonu Sood, M S Narayana, Brahmanandam
Music: S S Thaman
Dialogues: Kona Venkat
Cinematographer: K V Guhan
Editing: M R Varma
Story, screenplay, direction: Srinu Vaitla
Producers: Anil Sunkara, Achanta Ram, Achanta Gopichand
Release date: 23/09/2011
 
The much delayed and most awaited movie has finally arrived. It has brought Mahesh Babu along with Samantha under the direction of Srinu Vaitla. Let us take a plunge into the details.

Story:
Shankar Narayana (Prakash Raj) an honest man with ideals who does a lot for the poor. His good deeds find enemies (Kota, Supreeth, Sayaji). Shankar’s son Ajay (Mahesh Babu) grows up to be an honest and tough cop.

While the whole world thinks Shankar Narayana is dead, he is actually recovering in a hospital. Meanwhile, unaware of all this flashback Ajay sets on a mission to hunt Nayak (Sonu Sood), a dreaded mafia don. In this process, he comes across Prashanti (Samantha) and falls in love with her. Meanwhile, Shankar Narayana recovers but he is not supposed to go through any sort of stress.

For this, Ajay starts doing all sorts of things to keep him happy. The story takes a turn when Ajay discovers about the attack on his father and decides to take revenge. How does he do that? Whether he is successful or not forms the rest of the story.
 
Performances:
Mahesh Babu gives a powerhouse performance. His versatility in acting and emoting of various expressions is impressive. As usual, he rocks with his style and handsome looks. 

Samantha looks sweet. She manages to do justice in songs and the light romance track. However, she must reduce her dose of makeup and start focusing on adding few extra pounds, that will make her double sexy.

Prakash Raj was matured as usual. Though he doesn’t have intense scenes in it, he maintains a contained act and does his bit as required.

Sonu Sood looks stylish as a villain but his characterization is not that powerful. This time, he was not able to create the required impact. 

Nasser was natural, Brahmanandam was hilarious, M S Narayana was fantastic, Vennela Kishore brought few extra smiles and made his presence felt, Sonia was alright, Subbaraju made his presence felt, Kota was effective, Sayaji Shinde was standard, Aditya Menon was apt, Tanikella Bharani was elegant, Supreeth was okay. Special mention must be made of Parvathi Melton. Her item song and her oozing sex appeal is a visual delight. The others did their bit as required and added value.
 
Highlights:

  • Mahesh Babu’s performance
  • Brahmi, M S Narayana comedy
  • Second half
  • Parvathi Melton’s item song

Drawbacks:

  • First half
  • Length
  • Routine Vaitla formula
  • Weak romance track
  • MLA get up Mahesh Babu got wasted

Analysis:
The two names, Mahesh Babu and Srinu Vaitla, are enough to set high expectations for the film. But the best way to enjoy this film is to go with an open mind. As such, this is a typical Srinu Vaitla film and his formula and pattern is the same from start to finish.

Subba Raju’s character resembles Jaya Prakash Reddy in ‘Dhee’. Brahmanandam’s character resembles what he portrayed in ‘Ready’.

Only difference is, the commercial elements are high and for a change he has shown villains as villains and not converted them to good beings.

As usual, Vaitla relied on his strengths ie comedy and dialogues. During the first half, things are quite erratic and it is hard to connect. Many were looking at their watches for the interval bang. During the interval many gave thumbs down reactions and somewhat negative vibes.

The much hyped Mahesh Babu’s MLA get up is wasted in the film. The purpose of raising curtain for a reality show by Mahesh Babu is not at all convincing but boring. Taking the bigger risk of reality show to keep father happy is like a cock and bull story. The entertainment graph falls down suddenly due to that. Audience gets disconnected to the film at that moment for about 20 minutes. Although the purpose of that reality show is not convincing, the pattern in which it goes with other artistes brought the humor.

But second half covered up the entire thing and no one looks at the watch anymore. There are few points which are worth mentioning here:

  • When Dharmavarapu faxes a celebrity photo to the villains. All are shocked. You must watch the film to enjoy that.
  • The scene between Sonu Sood and Prakash Raj. It is a straight lift from ‘Sarkar’ scene between Amitabh Bachchan and Zakir Hussain, but a weak imitation.
  • Last twenty minutes comedy and the dialogues of Brahmi and M S Narayana

Overall, the film has the right ingredients to appeal the family audience and though most of it is expected, it is the pace and ability with which the audience is engaged and the entertainment value they get.
 
At the box office, with no other film in sight and the hype created, the film will be invincible. 

Bottom-line: Routine Vaitla's flick

(Venkat can be reached at venkat@greatandhra.com)

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