Director Vijay Bhaskar was twice lucky with ‘Victory’ Venkatesh and he’s all set to test his luck for the third time with Masala. For this film he stays in a safe zone by venturing into a ‘photocopier’ mode. He picks up the script of Bol Bachchan and presses ‘CTRL + F’ and then replaces Ajay Devgan and Abhishek Bachchan with Venky and Ram respectively. He also does the same for the supporting cast.
Though he does that effortlessly and aimlessly, he must be lauded for climbing up a few notches for creating a milieu of cheerfully cheesy jokes and a slaughterhouse of English language. In this process of overloading the film with masala staples, he’s forgot the essentials of storytelling, building a believable character arc, constructing coherence and above all staying close to LOGIC.
Venkatesh plays an able-bodied-dumb-witted, Robinhood-esque village headman who loves to break bones and murder English. His gawky English one-liners sound like a series of college-ish gags strung together and they become tiresome after you cross a certain zone of tolerance. Ram plays Rahman, his alter ego, also called Ram and another alter ego, also called Rahman. Confused? It hardly matters.
As the film progresses, one cliché mount on the other and the director forcefully lands it in the ‘comedy of errors’ zone. At times you feel Masala finds some resemblance with Denikaina Ready and at times you feel, for heaven’s sake, why an over-exposure to gay comedy. To match the lame story-telling and staggering stereotypes, the sequences are made loud and the performances overblown.
Venkatesh takes the meaty chunk of the pie with his comedy. He is ably supported by Ram and the latter with his ever flowing energy holds the pieces of the film together. ‘Horrible sir Horrible’ Jaya Prakash Reddy, with his antics, induces more laughter into the comic template. Kovai Sarala is a miscast in her role. There’s nothing much to talk about Anjali and Shazahn Padamsee. They are just there to fill in the gaps in some emotional scenes and to dance for ‘Same to same’ Thaman’s cringe-worthy tunes. The jarring background score accentuates the film’s look-and-feel and qualifies it as 100 % nonstop nonsense. Wait; is it me, or everyone has heard something similar to that of Bodyguard.
Masala is a Vijay Bhaskar film which smoothly slides into S V Krishna Reddy territory and a dash of Priyadarshan comedies. The copy-paste elements are fine but the director’s improvisations over the original are painful.The movie’s title can be replaced with ‘Mass-ala’ for itscrowd-pleasing moments, gravity-defying stunts and flying-in-the-air vehicles that suck all the air of realism. Masala is an assortment of crude and genuine laughs, and an experiment to test if the same silly ‘Telugufied English’ jokes work with us. And it reiterates the fact that ‘Repetition would not be considered cynical’ in Tollywood. Mind it.
Shirt catch dirt… wash by surf excel. Movie catch dirt… can’t do anything to excel.
My Rating: Expectation – 7/10; Reality – 5/10view less