Thursday, August 13, 2015


"Telugu movies have come of age. First it was Bahubali and now Srimanthudu," was the line yesterday by, (now I know), a big Mahesh Babu fan.
I had resisted going to this movie as the trailers promised nothing exciting. Yet, I fell for the above line and went today to see this movie, expecting something on the lines of Nenokkadine. The movie began ten minutes late, perhaps waiting for the theater to be filled. But it remained half-empty. This should have tipped me off.
The beginning was a LOUD song and dance sequence in God's prayer, hoping perhaps that the movie works? Sigh! I thought if the beginning is as mundane as this, what do I expect from the movie?
The song and dance over, it was the routine, quickly falling in love with the heroine to meet again and again...fall in love...fall out of love... and then separate when she discovers he is rich and taunts him about knowing nilch about his native village. He leaves for that village which happens coincidentally to be her native village as well.
This is the first half, wasting 1+ hours watching the apathetic romance happen. Before interval, the hero is seen bashing up some gundas and this is a precursor to what's to come.The second half is filled with gunda -bashing and more bashing and then some more bashing and then the film ends.

Some questions:
1. Just because a bimbette tells the hero that he doesn't know about his village, is it an inspiration enough for the hero to leave everything, go to a village, adopt it and take care of its infrastructure?
 2. The hero joins a rural degree college in the middle of the academic year just because the heroine happens to study there but seems more absorbed in study than the pretty lass. So why did he join that college?
3. He also drops out when he wants and implements all he has learnt in the village that he has adopted. Don't know why they have a three-year degree course if everything can be learnt in a few months (or is it days)?
4. The hero is shown helping a poor family get its daughter married . Why this incident , no one knows, as later they make no impact on the story at all.
5. Why does the otherwise good looking Jagapathi Babu have to act as Mahesh Babu's father? Why does he have to have white hair and a white beard when his wife sports jet-black hair?
6. What are the hero and the heroine's mothers (Sukanya and Sithara) doing in the film?
7. Does just rolling out a map of the village mean that you are a civil engineer and are capable enough to plan the village infrastructure?

No plot conviction:
The movie doesn't give enough time for a plot to linger and build. It just fast forwards itself jumping from one incident to another. There is no cohesion, whatsoever.
The audience is not convinced of the hero's motives. The hero himself seems to be just going through the motions and not convinced about what is expected of him in the movie.
The villains haven't done enough evil to get bashed so badly, forget getting killed at the end.
 Lot of characters are introduced with very brief roles, bordering on cameos. And everyone seems to have sleep-walked through the movie.
Mahesh Babu for the nth time, speaks through clenched teeth and bashes up people. He definitely seemed bored of the repeat stuff.
And what's with Mahesh Babu's heavily made-up face. Does he think he is aging or what?

Two bright spots in the movie
1. The reliable Rajendra Prasad, as usual, doing his best
2. The absence of Brahmandam and his clich├ęd dialog, acting and script.

Just remembered I didn't mention the heroine's name. Uhh...does it matter ?
Go at your own risk, and only if  you have nothing else to do.

Pay heed to what Jagapathi Babu keeps saying in the movie, " Nuvvu emi chestunnavo naaku artham katmaledu, ra."

Friday, August 7, 2015

Sizzle-Drizzle or Fizzle?

Sizzle Drizzle, a Sizzler feast at Melange, Golconda Hotel

Sometimes you are so bedazzled by a so very polite and attentive service that the quality of the food is easily condoned.
It happened with me today. A sucker for sizzlers, I went to Golconda to partake of their sizzlers feast. For me, it was a different experience, as what was offered was an imaginative and adapted version of the regular sizzler, where Indian sizzler was offered with dal and nan, Continental with bruschettas and Oriental with fried noodles and rice.
Something very, very different than what I am used to...potato cutlet, rice/noodles with lots of veggies. But then I told myself, why not be adventurous and give the palate a new twist ( and taste) ?
I ordered the 'Little Feast.' It promised five vegetables with penne, tomato, basil, and vegetable croquettes.

The waiter offered to serve me the sizzler on plate. Having never been made this offer earlier, I declined and dug into it directly. The dish sizzled for a few seconds and then went dead. It was all fizzle and no sizzle then on. By the time I hit the last bite, it had gone stone cold.
The vegetable croquettes were very nice. Crunchy on outside and soft inside. Though lacking flavors, it was alright. The penne pasta by itself was good, though no vegetables found in it. It turned out to be a mix of macaroni and penne. But however experimental, a cream-based  dish on a sizzler? The vegetables were a very sad state of affairs. They looked slightly steamed and had no crunch expected of a sizzler dish.
The waiter helped me patiently by offering different sauces and condiments to pep up the taste but then when you start with something as dead as the above, one can't really infuse much life into it.The quantity wasn't too great either and the balance definitely not.... far too less veggies in proportion to the pasta and the croquettes.
Was served bruschetta also on the side, which again, was just okay.

To keep this review short and simple, all I need to do is present a REAL sizzler in contrast and I think that says it all. I had this at KOBE, Chennai. This was almost five minutes after being brought to the table. It kept sizzling for at least ten minutes more and was scalding hot till the last mouthful and this, despite me being a very slow eater.

If I go back for the sizzler, it would be for the excellent service by the waiter (Mahesh) who was very patient in listening and trying to compensate for the lack of a gratifying experience. 
If you go thinking this is not a sizzler dish, then the tastes are quite decent. Of course, a superb ambiance awaits you, if you do.