Movie: Ladies and Gentlemen
Banner: Shridi Sai Combines
Cast: Mahat Raghavendra, Adivi Sesh, Chaitanya Krishna, Kamal Kamaraju, Nikitha Narayan, Jasmin Bhasin, Swathi Deekshiith and Others
Story: Sanjeev Reddy
Music: Raghu Kunche
Editor: Naveen Nooli
Cinematography: Jagan Chavali
Producers: M V K Reddy, Madhura Sridhar Reddy
Director: PB Manjunath
Relese Date: Jan 30th, 2014
Mahesh Bhatt endorsed the film a couple of days back and predicted that it will be the predecessor for bold subjects in Tollywood. Well, that is bound to generate a lot of curiosity as the audiences go in expecting a lot of masala. So, let’s see what the film is about…
Like all films of this genre, the film follows the stories of three couples who are impacted by social media. So, we have a student Krishnamurthy (Chaitanya Krishna), a bored housewife Priya (Nikita Narayan) and a call centre employee Vijay (Mahat Raghavendra).
Though Krish dreams of having a girlfriend, like all boys of his age, he is shy and awkward. So, he hunts the Net to make friends with girls. One day, his prayers are answered and Deepa (Swathi Dixit) sends him a friend message.
Then, there is the rich but bored housewife Priya who has an ideal husband in Anand, who runs his own software firm (Kamal Kamaraju). But she wants the little joys of life which Anand has no time for due to busy schedules. So, when her college friend Rahul (Adivi Sesh) pops up suddenly, she ends up flirting with him.
Last, but not the least, there is Vijay (Mahat Raghavendra). He is a call centre employee, but dreams big and does not think twice before taking huge loans and resorting to inappropriate means to make money. And he splurges on his model girlfriend Anjali.
It is an ensemble cast of not-so-big actors. But all of them, both male and female cast, put in decent performances in keeping with their characters.
The main highlight of the film is surely the now popular Raghu Kunche song, Social network andi babu. The song is all over social media and is likely to be around for quite some time. Once again, Raghu Kunche comes up with that one song which the audiences will hum for a long, long time.
Cinematography, editing, screenplay all are decent.
The producer has taken care to provide the right backdrop for the film to make sure that it adds authenticity to the plot. As for director PB Manjunath, he debuts with the film. After working as an associate director for various films like Back Bench Student, etc, he gets a chance to make his own film. While his style of telling is in keeping with small budget films, he unfortunately gets to work with a stale story.
- First half
When a director who had worked in small films makes a film, then it is taken for granted that he will spice it up with lots of sleazy scenes to draw the B, C centre audiences. To be fair to Manjunath, he does make a clean film vis-à-vis the subject he has chosen.
He could have added adult scenes just to attract the audiences, but he tries to make it as situational as possible.
The director while trying to talk of social media actually makes a strong comment on human relations and emotions. Though the film meanders soullessly till after interval, it suddenly gets a jerk and suddenly springs to life in the last 20 minutes. From the time the pub song comes, the story suddenly begins to fall together. Director Manjunath manages to tell all that he wants to say in those few last scenes and that’s exactly why the film was made.
Another huge plus is the fact that the director does not take diversions merely to titillate the audience. And works as a warning call to all those who are caught in the Web of circumstances.
Of course, while its commercial viability is questionable, one has to accept that the director justifies his story by the time the final credits roll.
If the film manages to break even, then more and more film-makers will surely work towards touching upon sensitive subjects without turning them into adult comedies.
Bottomline: Honest attempt
(Venkat can be reached email@example.com or https://twitter.com/greatandhranews)