Nandini Reddy is back with an original script this time and, though the output isn’t as  well done as Ala Modalaindi, it still provides some fun entertainment with deeper moments sprinkled throughout.


Katha, Screenplay, Darsakathvam

Note: 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.

The story of Kalyana Vaibhogame reminded me of older films, like Happy, where the characters are in similar situations. Most of the characters in this movie are pretty straightforward and small details about them are mentioned throughout the movie to make them eccentric. I wish the director had given more background and justification for the lead pair’s objectives, however, because they come off more as characters with labels than actual people. For example, if Shourya (Naga Shourya) is so passionate about and successful at making video games, why don’t we see him working on anything throughout the movie (like we do in OK Bangaram)? Small details like these would have helped shape the characters even more, adding an element of realism that would have worked well with the rest of the film.

What really makes this film worth the watch is the situational comedy and hilarious dialogues that exists throughout; a majority of the theater was laughing throughout most of the movie. While the film does feel a little stretched at times, this comedy and the feel-good romance leave you with a smile at the end.

Performances

Naga Shourya

Naga Shourya plays the freedom loving video game developer, Shourya. His acting is adequate and works well with the other characters, especially Malavika, Raj Madhiraj, and the actor who plays his grandmother. Like aforementioned, his character would have been more believable if the director had taken care to justify his ambitions and success. Nandini Reddy should have focused more on this and less on establishing the carefree, party-frenzy romeo aspect of his character, which doesn’t really add much to the movie. His transformation is also very rapid near the end of the film and should have been paced better.

Malavika Nair

Malavika plays off the role of Divya very well but, like the problem with Shourya’s character, it is hard to buy that she is a state topper studying medicine. Nevertheless, Malavika delivers and emotes well. Her character’s transformation and internal struggle are more evident throughout the movie.

Raj Madhiraj and Aishwarya

Raj Madhiraj and Aishwarya act as the parents of Shourya and his adorable disabled brother. They both justify their roles, and Raj Madhiraj’s character has some good words of wisdom throughout the movie.

Anand and Raasi

Anand and Raasi perform as Malavika’s parents and it was refreshing to see their own transformation from the beggining to the end of the film.

Others

All the other actors are apt in their roles, though the inclusion of the American model, played by Pearle Maaney, seemed unnecessary. Thagubothu Ramesh appears at the end with a necessary twist, but his role doesn’t add much to the film. Ashish Vidhyarthi continues his role from Ala Modalaindi. I found this really effective as I was a fan of Ashish’s original role in that movie and it was a pleasant surprise to see him in this film as well. It converted what could’ve been a tired and bland conclusion into a comedic one.

Production Values

Music

The music of this film is by Kalyani Koduri and he does a passable job; though the songs aren’t as fun and catchy as his previous soundtracks like Oohallu Gusagusalade and Ala Modalaindi, they fit while watching the movie, especially the wedding song, Chakkandaala Chukka. The intro song, Pelli Pelli, was borderline annoying except for the chorus; overall, it was an okay attempt at something different.

Listen to the entire soundtrack here

Cinematography

G.V.S. Raju provides some good visuals, especially for the wedding scenes, which seem grandeur and exciting, and the songs, which, other than the intro song, are satisfying.


Final Verdict

I really like Nanidni Reddy’s own style of film making, especially the way she slips in strong ideas, like dealing with a disabled family member or openly talking about menstrual cycles, into a light-hearted family-friendly romantic entertainer. While Kalyana Vaibhogame isn’t near perfect, it still makes for a fun watch.

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Tags

kalyana vaibhogame, kalyani koduri, malavika nair, movie review, naga shourya, nandini reddy, telugu movie

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