Balayya fights a lone battle
Balayya fights a lone battle

The atmosphere is appropriate. The fans have waited long enough to see their he-man explode onscreen.  The title of the film – Jaisimha- is also a nice way to carry forward the Simha franchise which seems exclusively suited to the swag and pizzazz of Balayya.  As it has been the norm in recent times, a Chennai-based big name to wield the megaphone too is part of the deal. 

 After the other top-billed directors from Kodambakkam who recently have dabbled in Telugu filmdom, it is the turn of the veteran helmsman K S Ravikumar to make a return to mana industry. Bringing up the glam quotient and the inexplicable chemistry which lights up the onscreen interactions, there are three heroines – two unknown- Hariprriya and Natasha Doshi and one well-known – Nayantara. 

 So does the lion roar into the hearts of its followers and blasts its way to succeed at the box-office one more time?

Sadly, it doesn’t.  Whiplashed into submission like the ones seen in circuses, the king of the jungle is helpless as its master, the director picks up a weak, ineffective storyline, which fails to ignite curiosity but bogs down the narrative right from the beginning. 

The shaky start and a submissive Balakrishna throws a wet blanket as the scenes roll on, in which the hero and his new-born child are moving from state to state, till they settle in Kumbakonam  in Tamil Nadu where the action continues till the end after zig zag trips from Vizag and back.

A  bearded  Balakrishna and his past gets unravelled as the illogical twists and turns barely manage to put together a story – one that of a daredevil mechanic who takes on an aspiring politician, who loses everything and seeks revenge. Having forced to meet the fan club expectations, there are dream sequences where our hero gets physical with the lady slapping her bottom time and again and there are three  duet sequences  with all the ladies brought in for the audience .

The much vaunted sizzle that was thought of as an added attraction with Nayantara’s presence dissipates in no time as she is not seen in any intimate moments with her beau and serenades all by herself in the romantic portions, including the song. 

One wonders why she is there in the first place when she is not the main heroine! There are many such inconsistencies in the film which altogether ends up torturing the viewers with its extra long running time of 160-odd minutes. Surely, such films cannot be watched anymore in modern times, which are made for and expected to be sustained only by a narrow band of dedicated fans and none else.