'RED' has released in theatres today (January 14). Starring Ram Pothineni in dual roles, the film is a remake of 'Thadam' (Tamil). What does the film have in store? Does it pack thrills? Is it worth a watch? Here we tell you in our review.
Aditya (Ram Pothineni) is a petty thief who is pressed by circumstances to save his friend Vema (Sathya) from danger. Siddharth (Ram, again, as an identical twin) is the MD of a construction firm who is in love with Mahima (Malvika Sharma). Just the latter's life is going smoothly, he ends up being accused of murder. Even as Sid is being questioned by the cops (led by Sampath Raj and Nivetha Pethuraj), Aditya confuses the department. Where does the truth lie?
If Ram looked reckless and irreverent in 'iSmart Shankar', he is unusually involved here. The actor brings the intensity that Sid requires and the frivolity that Aditya requires. Nivetha Pethuraj, who enters the screen after an hour, is not so convincing as a cop. After playing soft roles in films like 'Brochevarevarura', she has been cast in an atypical role.
Amritha Aiyer and Malvika Sharma fit the bill. Sampath Raj is routine, while Vennela Kishore has a short role. Nasser and Posani Krishna Murali have cameos, while Satya delivers no laughs. Pavitra Lokesh and Sonia Aggarwal are good.
For a film with just three songs, a lot was expected from Mani Sharma. If 'Dinchak' clicks big-time as part of the flow, the one duet doesn't work. The background music struggles to get into the skin of the script. The Melody Brahma should have done much better. Sameer Reddy's cinematography is adequate. His work in the night scenes is as adept as that in the day-time scenes.
If you have watched 'Thadam', the plot might have intrigued you. 'RED', as such, will look jaded. Arjun Vijay's somewhat subtle act is replaced with Ram's somewhat straightforward act here.
The pace of the first half is too slow. The love track involving Ram and Malvika cries for a soul. The track between Ram and Satya doesn't pack a punch. Even the situational comedy is just so-so.
The actual story takes off only close to the interval. Sampath Raj starts off on a confident note, only to start looking dumb later. Nivetha's character was much hyped-up. All we get in her is a sorry SI who can't think beyond basics.
The second half, on paper, was peculiar and emotional enough to make a big difference. But, somehow, the narration struggles to rise above ordinariness. The storyline is superb on paper. There is no doubt in that. However, the same doesn't translate well on the screen, probably because Kishore Tirumala's dialogues and screenplay have no inventiveness.
The last 20 minutes is gripping. That is only if you haven't watched the Tamil original.
After a blockbuster like 'iSmart Shankar', Ram is now also looking at delivering a hit in Hindi, Tamil, Malayalam, Kannada, Marathi, Bengali and Bhojpuri, the languages in which 'RED' is releasing as dubbed versions either in theatres or OTT. The film is competing with 'Master', which has reportedly entered the profit zone in several territories on Day 2. 'Krack' is still going strong. Can Ram deliver a Sankranthi hit? Let's wait and watch.