'Dhamaka', produced by Abhishek Agarwal and T G Vishwa Prasad, was released in theatres today.
Swamy and Anand Chakravarthy are lookalikes (both played by Ravi Teja). The former is a jobless guy, while the latter is a rich businessman. Pranavi (Sreeleela) falls in love with both.
Anand's father Nanda Gopal Chakravarthy (Sachin Khedekar), the owner of a corporate entity, is facing a threat from a monstrous corporate honcho named JP (Jayaram). The clash between the two men results in a bloody tussle. There is also a twist in store. Will the good guys win in the end? Of course, they do. That's what the second half is about.
Ravi Teja is good as both Swamy and Anand, although the distinction feels unnatural in retrospect. Is this the most energetic of his performances in recent times? Considering that 'Khiladi' and 'Ramrao on Duty' were off the mark, you could say yes.
Sreeleela suits the song-and-dance format more than the love/comedy scenes. As someone who knows Telugu, she dubbed her character and the result is not great. Jayaram, recently seen as a non-stereotypical spy in 'Ponniyin Selvan', is good in a negative role. At least, it is not Jagapathi Babu playing a routine character for the nth time.
Sachin Khedekar, as the businessman Anand's father, leaves no impact. Tanikella Bharani is wasted, while Rao Ramesh is okayish. Ali and Praveen have nothing to do. Hyper Aadi's repartees with Rao Ramesh are sometimes hilarious. Pavitra Lokesh, Tulasi and Rajashree Nair are also seen. Raghu Babu, Krishna Bhagawan and Satyam Rajesh don't elicit laughs despite their vast experience. That's because the writing is insipid.
Music director Bheems Ceciroleo revs up the mood with the help of the most energetic singers (read Mangli and Nakash Aziz) out there. 'DandaKadiyal' and 'Jinthaak' are eminently enjoyable. Dance choreographers Sekhar VJ, Jani Master and Yashwanth chip in with befitting creativity. It's the songs that are the saving grace.
Cinematographer Karthik Gattamneni of 'Karthikeya 2' fame gives us a feeling of watching 'Ala Vaikunthapurramuloo' here and there in terms of the colour palette. Sri Nagendra Tangala's art direction also played a role in this. Prawin Pudi's editing is apt.
The film's story, screenplay and dialogue writer Prasanna Kumar Bezawada had an interesting thing to say: "Dhamaka is like another Rowdy Alludu, the Chiranjeevi-starrer released in 1991". For the benefit of those who haven't watched that movie, here is its storyline: An industrialist named Kalyan gets replaced by his lookalike Johnny by his enemies. The plan of the villains to implicate Kalyan in a murder case gets foiled by Johnny's smarts.
The similarities between that Megastar movie and 'Dhamaka' don't last long. And that's good. But what is problematic is the lack of originality at every turn. The film pays a hat-tip to two blockbusters: Chiranjeevi's 'Indra' and Allu Arjun's 'Ala Vaikunthapurramuloo'. The former is a direct and straightforward one. The latter is subtle. Remember the boardroom scene from 'AVPL'? There is a similar one here as well; Ravi Teja, Sreeleela and several other good guys indulge in an extempore dance-off in the presence of the bad guys inside a workplace.
The screenplay in the second half heavily hinges on the Sreenu Vaitla-Gopi Mohan-Kona Venkat school of writing. The male lead hoodwinks the villain by directly infiltrating his turf and by pulling wool over his eyes by pretending to be an innocent person. The over-the-top nature of writing and the lack of hilarity flatten the impact of 'Dhamaka'.
The love track is a total washout. The heroine is not the only one who is a Theda Queen here. Even her mother is - she is fine with her daughter testing the waters with the two men the latter is attracted to!
The villainy has been portrayed with no understanding of the real world. JP goes and threatens businessmen, says he will shed their blood, and/or kills them at will. This is not how grabbing corporate entities works in real life. JP grabs companies like a local politician grabs lands!
'Dhamaka' is a largely illogical film that tries to pass off stale ideas in the name of vintage Ravi Teja-style entertainment.