• Khaidi No 150

    You have a problem, you need a solution for that but no one is listening to you. You are shouting at your higher pitch, trying more than you can and everything you can. Still nothing. What would you do? One of my friends, I met today tried something radical, something very extreme. I felt he did the right thing. But law said he is wrong! Convicted him as a criminal! Why? I think it was an important problem that he talked about, it was about our roots, our survival, our food. I felt it was undermining his actions, somehow they just did not give him his due. What is your take on that?

    Plot : Kaththi Seenu (Chiranjeevi) is the coveted prisoner number 150, in the Kolkata central jail who is a thief. But he is the most smartest person you can meet. He has a charm and talent. He lets one big criminal escape from the jail and then as the Jailer agrees for his demands, he helps them in catching the person. As they are happy for catching the big criminal, they forget to put a leash on Kaththi and he escapes. He lands like a cyclone in front of his associate and friend(Ali) in Hyderabad. He helps him plan to shift to Bangkok but at the Airport Kaththi meets Lakshmi (Kajal) and falls for her. Destiny lands him in with the opportunity to lead a new life as Shankar (Chiranjeevi). Shankar is a hydrologist and he is trying to help his village, Neerooru, to find the water they have in their name. With this identity change, Kaththi gets opportunities to make as much money as possible. Being a thief, did he utilise those opportunities or did he help the villagers? What did Shankar do? A big corporate, Aggarwal (Tarun Arora) is also involved in the matter! What is the fight all about? Who won? Watch the movie on screen to unveil the answers.

    Performances : The main highlight for this movie, as in any movie he has been part off, 149 previous ones to be precious, is Chiranjeevi. He looked smart, tried to showcase difference in two characters, achieved that, he showcased that he still can dance with loads of grace and then he made it evident that he is the better actor, Chiru, that we all adore. He is the man of the Match in this 50 – 50 One day Match. At the age of 62, many would have thought about what more do I need in life but he just changed that perception, reduced his body weight, danced with nimble feet along with his young Star Son, Ram Charan Tej and never looked like he left the scene. It is his film all through.

    Kajal Aggarwal has been part of most of the biggies last year and she started this year with biggest of them all. But she has a limited presence and all she had to do was to show up and be sexy in songs. He did that with no strain. Tarun Arora if he needed to be taken seriously in Telugu films, he should put in the effort to learn the language and say the lines. The dubbing and lip sync were off putting. Brahmanandam as Doberman was fine in scenes with Chiru but there was nothing new that he could add.

    Ali, Raghu Babu, Prudhvi, Posani, Raghu, Jaya Prakash Reddy and others were there to do their job. They did fine and there is nothing important in what they did to write about. They were there to fill up the 147 minutes time. The old actors who played as villagers and residents of Old age home were good.

    Technicalities : The main credit should go to Ram Charan Tej for assembling such a cast and going through with the production even though he was doing his own movie on one side. The production values in the movie are no less to the stature of the man in spotlight, Chiranjeevi and it was a worthy debut as a producer by young star hero.

    Ratnavelu was right on the money with his camera work and his visuals were the best part of the runtime. He did not let the screen look dull for a moment and everything looked as it was intended. Thota Tharani work on sets was visible in songs and the legend did his job well. Devi Sri Prasad, did manage two blockbuster songs for the album, Ratthalu and Ammadu Lets Do Kummudu but his back ground score was a let down. In recent times, he gave his best in Nannaku Prematho but here he was only good in few scenes. He could have been a bigger help had he concentrated more on the score within the time he had. Gautham Raju’s editing followed the original to the tee and it was good enough without any jerks.

    A.R. Murugadoss is known for making films with all commercial elements highlighting a social cause. He mixed all of that in his Kaththi but the remake needed much much better core writing team and director to give it necessary punch. The movie loses in thess key factors. VVVinayak, once upon a time was a good commercial director but here even to match copy to copy of Murugadoss, he lost the intensity. He did capture Shankar episodes well, but all important factors that would hold your interest through out were handled highly pale in comparison.

    He is the first culprit for not being able to transfer all the effort that a veteran actor was putting on screen. He was ok in bits and pieces but if you have seen the original, you miss the intense drama and necessary emotion that makes you care for the plight and enjoy the stardom of Vijay. Vema Reddy and Sai Madhav Burra, followed the original in their dialogues and except for a monologue by Chiru, which was also inspired by Original. The impact that such a climax created in original was missing here trying to make it a 90’s potboiler. The scripting team Vinayak, Paruchuri Brothers and two young dialogue writers, had lot to learn from original but just made a lazy copy paste.

    Analysis : It is a Mega Event ful comeback of the biggest Star of Telugu Cinema. The film needed to reach the anticipation level and hype around it but with a lacklustre effort from scripting team led by VVVinayak, the impact falls down flat on screen. With such an actor and star at their disposal bigger than Vijay, they could have easily made it more impactful like previous one Tagore, but they missed the target by inches. Still they made a film, that will satisfy the fans of the star but even they would forget the film until and unless it creates wonders at box office. A prestigious movie of Megastar needed but more effort than this. All in all, the difference between Kaththi and Khaidi No. 150 is the conviction of A.R. Murugadoss. Watch it for the efforts of the Megastar and to enjoy him on screen again after a decade.

    Rating : 3.25/5

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