Mahesh Babu tries hard to salvage a dicey masala mix

Mahesh Babu tries hard to salvage a dicey masala mix
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Highlights

After essaying dignified roles in films like ‘Bharat Ane Nenu,’ lungi-clad Mahesh Babu plays to the gallery and he is at his best in comic-timing but couldn’t sustain interest of the audience beyond a point.

After essaying dignified roles in films like 'Bharat Ane Nenu,' lungi-clad Mahesh Babu plays to the gallery and he is at his best in comic-timing but couldn't sustain interest of the audience beyond a point.

Apart from kids-rescue operation and picturesque locales, the much-taunted Kashmir backdrop doesn't jell with this story which is primarily a comic-caper from director Anil Ravipudi, who is yet to come out of his 'F2' hangover.

Honestly, the vibrant patriotic mood in the Kashmir border gets diluted as the film moves to the town. Adding to it, Mahesh taking on an adversary (local Minister), who is no match to his Army Major position in the movie, takes the sting out of his 'heroics' and turns into usual hero-baddy tussle.

Coming to the story, Major Ajay Krishna (Mahesh Babu) is a highly regarded as an efficient crisis manager in the Indian Army.

Bharathi (Vijaya Shanti) is a Kurnool medical college professor, her son works in army with Ajay. When Bharathi's son dies in an army operation, as a morale duty, Ajay Krishna goes to Kurnool to support his colleague's family.

State minister Nagendra (Prakash Raj) develops grudge against Bharathi and attempts to kill her family. At the same time Ajay arrives at Kurnool and rest of the movie is a confrontation between Ajay and Nagendra.

Among actors, Rashmika goes over-the-top as she falls all over Mahesh and Prakash Raj's villainy lacks the punch as he sometimes behaves almost like a clown, while the role of Bandla Ganesh turns out to be a damp squib.

Clearly, Anil Ravipudi banked on Mahesh's charisma than a good plot and churned out a 'masala mix' packed with ingredients but this disjointed effort is a gamble of sorts.

Mahesh Babu plays a Major and fits the bill. His character and theme song are kind of a tribute to Indian Army but the Kashmir euphoria is short-lived because his adversaries change and then on it takes the shape of a routine potboiler and disconnects with the beginning episodes.

Of course, Mahesh showcases his flair for comedy in this family entertainer and would be banking on his legion of fans and festival crowds to give him a winner.

For Vijaya Shanti it is a cake-walk because she has played righteous roles in the past but this film justifies her comeback to silver screen.

However, Rashmika who rose to fame with her performance in films 'Geeta Govindam' and 'Dear Comrade' has chosen a cliched heroine role which will dent her image a bit.

No doubt, Anil Ravipudi tasted success with films like 'Raja The Great' and 'F2.'

But when he joined hands with Mahesh Babu, he should have spent more time on the screenplay to fill the gaping holes.

But he takes things lightly, like heroes in his fun-centric movies.

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