Movie Review: O Sthree Repu Raa
Cast: Asish Gandhi, Vamsi Krishna Koduri, Kunal Koushik, Deeksha Panth, Shruti Mol, Manali Rathod, Swapnika, Harsha Viva, Shaan, Veera Babu, Shyam Sunder.
Producer–Story–Director: Ashok Reddy
Music: GV; Editor: Ramanjaneya Reddy; Script & Dialogues: Pavan Rachepalli; Camera: Siddam Manohar, Devara Harinath.
Censor Certificate: A and Runtime: 125 Minutes
A group of youngsters who have nothing else to do, think that it will be worthy if they dabble into of spirits. Writer Mounika (Deeksha Panth), her boyfriend Kalyan (Ashish) pick up their close buddies on their way home to fulfil this mysterious plan. The subject opens with Mounika receiving a challenge from publishing house to complete a novel based on 1992 folklore “O Sthree Repu Raa”. It’s about a ghost that comes at night, and calls the individuals out with some hypnotic voice and kills them or does something to them. Soon, Deeksha, Kalyan and friends chain up to talk with spirit world through Ouija board. That’s when ghost start narrating her 1990’s flash back, stating that Kalyani (Shruti Mol) loved Srinu, a zamindari’s son and wishes to marry him. When she was about to start her new life, she was killed. Taking this as an opportunity local guy Mangaraju spreads a rumour stating Kalyani started taking revenge on Ambapuram village, to prevent the ghost from killing you up, you need to write “O Sthree Repu Raa”, so that ghost would see that and go away, to return the next day. And if by any chance this gets erased, the ghost would gobble you up. Rest of the drama is all about what happens to Mounika and friends.
Shruti Mol who plays the part of Kalyani, who has to be called the female protagonist, looks okay but the role doesn’t offer her anything to perform at all except linger around in half sarees. Asish, Deeksha Panth, Vamsi Krishna and Kunal Kaushik, who play the leading roles don’t look embarrassing, as the film so shallow that no one will bother about dissecting any aspect of this film. Rest of the stars are mediocre in their limited characters.
The rather oddly titled film is based on a tale that has been told umpteen times in different hues by many other accomplished directors. Based on 1992 true events. The movie tries to dig deep into the old world of blood thirsty ghost whose tales are found abounding in the repertoire of our grandmothers and lores. Short film director turned director Ashok Reddy’s O Sthree Repu Ra narrates couple of stories in a multi linear way, with the basic connection that links them all being “Popular Telugu Folklore”. The movie flutters between present and past. The attempts to evoke fear and shock in the viewers are handled in very amateurishly and it is not a surprise given the fact the script is so poorly conceived and is replete with harebrained loopholes (like for example, the lead actors play Ouija with using coins and If O sthree Repu Ra was a belief spread by a greedy man, why the heck did ghost worry about it and return for revenge the very next day, why didn’t they come up with something like O Sthree Eppudu Raaku (Oh! Lady never come back) etc). At a time when different films are ruling roost, the makers might have assumed that there is space for a movie belonging to the horror genre.
The stories are tatted in a random way and instead of making the journey thrilling the film actually tests your patience with unnecessary detailing. There’s nothing more disappointing than a movie that starts off enjoyably, only for it to get progressively worse and worse the longer it goes on. Technically, music by GV is competent, the two musical compositions which is best serve as accompaniments to this flaky story being narrated. Cinematography by Manohar and Harinath is fine. Editor should have done away with the flash cuts, just to avoid predictability. Production values by Reading Lamp Creations are alright.
O Sthree Repu Raa develops zero thrills, uses countless cheap jump scares (never works), has a bothering double twist climax that is telegraphed from the very beginning, and is packed from weak actors that are in many cases plucked from various films in the same genre (though based on a true story). In the end, O Sthree Repu Ra is a conscientious exercise in film making which will be brushed aside with scorn by the audience.
Survi Review: 1/5
PS: There is a similar event happened in Bangalore, Where a ghost roams around visiting people’s houses. To prevent the ghost from killing you, you would write “ನಾಳೆ ಬಾ” (NaaLe ba means “come tomorrow”) on the door of your house. The ghost would see this and go away, to return the next day.