Nani has been on a roll lately, with his last three films garnering positive reviews and appreciation from the audience. For his latest release, he’s teamed up with the director who introduced him, Mohan Krishna Indraganti, and his first co-star, Sreenivas Avasarala. The combination, along with the promotional content, garnered plenty of hype for the film, so let’s see if it lives up to it.
Katha, Screenplay, Darsakathvam
I don’t believe in spoiling the plot of a film before watching it. If you haven’t seen the movie yet and would like to know the plot, you can read more about it here.
Gentleman promotions hinted that Nani would be seen in two different lenses in this film. This is true, but the way in which this is achieved is a little routine. Nevertheless, having a duality gives the film more content and forms the crux of the suspense that keeps the audience intrigued till the end. Because the film’s strength lies in the suspense and mystery of this duality, the film might have benefited from more focus on that and less focus on the introductory love stories. They are only mildly entertaining and it feels as if they could easily have been shortened while retaining their impact in exposition. There is also a lack of consistency in some of the characteristics of the characters from the beginning to the end that should have been taken care of.
While the main focus is on Nani’s duality, I did like how Indraganti depicted the story, ensuring that the female protagonists got enough screen presence and scope to perform. If he had taken the same care with the antagonist in the film, the ending of Gentleman might have had a bigger impact, but it almost feels anti-climatic when the antagonist is defeated. In addition to this post-climax slump, Indraganti explains the entire story of the film in dialogue at the end and, while this might help those who haven’t been able to keep up, it does feel a bit unnecessary.
Nani has delivered a phenomenal performance in this film, exhibiting charm and suspicion with equal prowess. He is definitely a talented artist and I’m curious to see how long he can keep up this string of hits.
I believe this is Nivetha Thomas’s debut in Telugu cinema and she is a wonderful young actress. Her performance in this film is clearly a highlight and I would argue that it even outshines Nani’s. The scenes with the two of them are fun to watch and it is great seeing a level headed female protagonist have her own agenda in a Telugu film. I’m looking forward to seeing more of her in future Telugu films.
Surabhi plays the character of Aishwarya, a young heiress to a business tycoon, and she is pretty convincing but doesn’t have much scope beyond that.
Sreenivas Avasarala tried a different avatar in this film and is only mildly successful. I don’t think this is his fault though, because it seems like the director didn’t expect more from his role. Sreemukhi plays an investigator and she does a good job. I don’t know why she doesn’t get more roles in movies. Tanikella Bharani has a very small role in the film that is somewhat trivial. Vennela Kishore is hilarious as the office manager. Rohini puts in a convincing act as Gautham’s (Nani) mother and it’s great to see the two together again after Ala Modalaindi.
I was surprised to know that Mani Sharma was the music director for this film because I haven’t seen a film with his music in a long time. He does provide a good enough album, though Saturday Night Fever feels a little out of place in the movie, and the BGM elevates a number of the scenes. Of the songs, I like Chali Gali Chudhu the most.
P. G. Vinda took care of the cinematography and the scenes are pretty appealing as most major Telugu films nowadays are. There is a good variety in the locations that helps make the love stories seem somewhat fresh, and the scenes with high suspense are attention grabbing (thanks in part to the BGM).
Indraganti is a talented director, but he hasn’t been doing well in recent years. While Gentleman does suffer from some unnecessary and elongated scenes, it is still packed with suspenseful drama, light comedy and hummable songs, and shows that he still has what it takes to score a hit.
Kids will probably not understand the few scenes that are inappropriate for them, but there are some concepts touched and hinted at in this film that parents might not want them to see.
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