'Bhaag Saale', produced by Vedaansh Creative Works in association with Big Ben Cinema and Cine Valley Movies, hit the cinemas today (July 7). In this section, we are going to review the latest box-office release.
Arjun (Sri Simha Koduri) is a chef from an economically backward background. He falls in love with a rich girl named Maya (Neha Solanki) by projecting himself as an Ambani. In a quirky twist of sorts, a Nizam-era ring goes missing and Arjun and his parents (Rajeev Kanakala and Bindu Chandramouli) get entangled in a comedy of errors. A local gangster named Samuel (John Vijay) is after them.
A bunch of clowns, among them an egomaniacal cop named Promise Reddy (Satya) and a goon (Harsha Chemudu), are drawn into the circus.
Sri Simha Koduri's two previous films, 'Thellavarithe Guruvaram' and 'Dongalunnaru Jaagratha', didn't have him in fleshed-out roles. For the first time since 'Mathu Vadalara' (2019), he shows a semblance of promise.
John Vijay, as a comedy villain, offers an outdated style of acting. Nellore Sudharshan (once again, as a friend, after last week's release 'Samajavaragamana'), and '30 Years' Prudhviraj don't leave an impact. Harsha Chemudu and Satya are good.
Music director Kaala Bhairava doesn't offer anything memorable. 'Prema Kosam' (sung by Mangli) and 'Kootha Ramp', with their respective sensibilities, work to an extent. Editor Karthika Srinivas R's work is not so sharp. Cinematographer Ramesh Kushendar is sincere but not awesome, while production designer Shruthy Nookala's work is middling.
The film begins with the introduction of a Nizam-era diamond ring that changed hands during the colonial era. There is a brief reference to how the French Revolution, too, affected its destiny. The narrator is Siddhu Jonnalagadda. Despite his familiar voice, the narration loses fizz right after the first sentence.
The villain, we are told, is embroiled in plenty of murder cases. But we are never sure how it affects his capacity to do whatever he wants. Clowns support him in his endeavour to trace the diamond ring. His perpetual casual mode annoys us after a point. Prudhviraj gets slapped in a scene and that's the only random thing that we remember about him. Satya calls himself Promise Reddy but is never seen making any promises. He is busy showing attitude and throwing tantrums. RJ Hemanth hails from a Zamindar family and is thankfully limited to a scene or two.
The hero's character had to be a banger. As a daydreaming chef, he behaves like a con artist more than a skilled professional.
The film's idea of comedy is outdated. "Underwear lopala veskunna nuv Superman vi," says Nellore Sudharshan to the hero. Do you find it funny? If no, brace up for many more such lifeless jokes. There is a basic reference to Mahesh Babu's 'Businessman'. The villains with silly weaknesses are unsparing in their routineness.
The crime comedy tropes are just too many. Coincidences, a precious object changing hands, characters developing a sudden capacity for action, greediness resulting in problems for middle-class people, a seductress, liberal use of expletives in the name of comedy, first-night comedy, blunders that lead to more problems, and more are too routine.
Writer-director Praneeth Bramandapally delivers a damp squib.