Ohmkar’s Raju Gari Gadi (2015) Movie Review
Opened: 16 October 2015
Star Cast: Ashwin Babu, Dhanya Balakrishna, Chethan Cheenu, Eshanya, Poorna, Posani Krishna Murali, Raghu Babu, Rajeev Kanakala, Pavithra Lokesh, Saptha Giri, Prabhas Srinu, Dhanraj and Shakalaka Shankar.
Music Composed by Sai Karthik
Cinematography by Gnanam
Editing by Nagaraj
Censor Certificate: UA
Runtime: 135 Minutes (after voluntary cuts)
A group of seven individuals Ashwin (Ashwin), Nandu (Chetan), Barbie (Eshanya), Su (Dhanya Balakrishnan), Shivudu (Dhanraj), M Y Danam (Shankar) and Bujjimma (Vidyulekka) are selected for a Television reality show “Dhayyam tho 7 rojulu, Pattukunte 3 kottulu” (Those who spends 7 days in this haunted Nandigama palace and survive will get Rs. 3 crores). Program head Pakoddi (Prabhas Seenu) and Chekodi (Raghu Babu) have arranged all kinds of scares for the contestants, but the ghosts of the palace Bommali (Poorna) and Bommali Raja (Posani Krishna Murali) put on their own show. As we are taken on the ride with the characters, the film plays with your mind and offers genuine surprises and excitement not seen once the main story comes into focus. The catch, it turns out, two of the seven contestants are unknowingly related to the consequences happening over here.
The acting is pretty much even, Dhanraj, Shakalaka Shankar and Rajeev Kanakala come up with convincing performances. Rest of the characters Ashwin Babu, Chethan Cheemu, Sapthagiri, Posani Krishna Murali, Pavitra Lokesh and Prabhas Seenu have played their roles fairly well. The scenes involving Poorna and Posani Krishna Murali fails to make an impact. Debutant Eshanya is sizzling in her short role. Dhanya Balakrishna and Vidyullekha Raman are far from satisfactory.
The story of group of individuals getting trapped in a haunted place is nothing new. We have in seen films like Hansu, House on Haunted Hill, Paranormal Activity, Rose Red, Grave Encounters etc. But the stories in Raju Gari Gadi are twined in a random way and makes first half a really entertaining affair, thanks to Shakalaka Shankar, Dhanraj and conversation between Maa TV Associates. But it’s the second half where the film actually starts to test your patience with unnecessary detailing. Though the story has heavily inspired from our regular horror – comedy films like Prema Katha Chitram with some minor changes towards the second half. Still the feeling one gets is that there is an honest effort to make a good film but it’s just that makers failed to present the soul of the film in a gripping way. As it mostly happens in films of this pattern, some of the connecting stories are too weak and as a result, the film loses its steam, somewhere in between the second half. Even the happenings of the story contains very less relevant to justify the title the film. With Raju Gari Gadi, director Ohmkar will surely surprise you with his skill set.
Coming to other technical aspects, Cinematographer Gnanam and his camera place a range of visual challenges before the viewer that adds the mysterious feel that lingers throughout the film. Rerecording by Sai Kartheek and Audiography by Radhakrishna are too good and add to the flow of narration. Dialogues by Sai Madhav Burra shine through the first half of the film. Sahisuresh’s art work and set design are commendable. Nagaraj’s editing is fine in the first half, but fails to keep the track in the second. Visual Effects of the film are fine. Apparently, the biggest advantage of Raju Gari Gadi is the shoestring budget of 3Crs.
Raju Gari Gadi is a film that has been presented far more drollery than what it is worth. The film manages to give you some entertainment, but that is not all that you want from a horror comedy for sure. A tightened narration and soulful script could have given more pleasing look to this “gadhi”. All in all, Raju Gari Gadi tries to package too many things, but ends up being an effete motley of half-baked stuff.
Survi Review: 1.5/5 (0.5 more for the quality in Technicalities – 2/5)