Gentleman movie review: Prajwal shines in this thriller
Gentleman is a Prajwal Devaraj show all the way, featuring the actor in one of the best roles in his career
Gentleman opens with a Yakshagana performance, which shows the story of Ravana’s brother, Kumbhakarna. It is a reference to the condition of the film's protagonist, Bharath Kumar (Prajwal Devaraj). Bharath, who works in an electronics showroom, suffers from a rare disorder — sleeping beauty syndrome, which is said to occur in one among a million people. It makes one fall asleep for 18 hours a day, leaving just six hours for the rest of their activities, including work.
Chikki Chikki Chikkappa, Chochlategintha sweetappa... Chikki Chikki Chikkappa, nidde enda ellappa, these sweet lines, often told by Varu, his brother’s daughter, help him chase conman Johnny (Prashanth Siddhi), who abducts the child (Aaradhya). In a parallel track, the film explores the ova scam involving a mafia dealing in human egg cells. Director Jadesh Kumar has dealt with two fresh themes, which are new to Kannada cinema.
The film starts on a slow note, establishing the various characters, Bharath's family, the company he works at while handling his sleeping disorder, and the many challenges he faces as a result of his condition.
In between all this, he also finds love in Tapasvini (Nishvika Naidu), a dietician. Her parents are trying to find her a match, and she finds a suitable groom in Bharath. However, the latter is not ready to reveal his health issue, due to a fear of losing her. An untoward incident reveals the truth to Tapasvini. She initially distances herself from Bharath, for not opening up to her, only to return to him later. The reason for her decision forms one part of the story.
On the other hand, the plot brings to light the embryo trade. Bharath has to dig deeper into the circumstances around his brother’s (Pranav) accident, with the help of inspector Shivmurthy (Sanchari Vijay) and doctor Swaminathan Rai (Arjun), only to uncover some startling truths. How this 'gentleman' goes on to take revenge leads us to an action-packed climax.
Jadesh Kumar has understood the strength of Prajwal Devaraj as a mass hero, while also gauging the viewers’ liking for a different kind of storytelling. He has pulled off an intense drama in Gentleman. The film brings together all the elements of a masala drama — action, love, and humour — and adds twists to make it a good thriller. There is some formulaic action and a couple of cliche scenes, but these flaws can be overlooked.
Gentleman is a Prajwal Devaraj show all the way. Apart from maintaining his mass hero image, the actor has understood the behaviour of a character suffering from sleeping beauty syndrome and gives a laudable performance. The director deserves credit for giving Prajwal one of the best roles of his career.
Jadesh Kumar has also given Nishvika Naidu more to do than just playing the love interest and she has taken a new approach to her role. The rest of the actors, including Sanchari Vijay, Prashanth Siddhi, Pranav, Arjun, and Vijay Chendur, provide good support.
Music director Ajaneesh Loknath has composed both the background score and the songs, something the composer doesn't generally do. And he has met the requirements to an extent. A few episodes of Gentleman show some interesting picturisation by Sudhakar Shetty.
All in all, Gentleman is a gripping film, well worth the price of admission.