Chal Mohana Ranga Review: Only entertaining in parts
Those who go in expecting something different and interesting because the story was written by Trivikram, are in for a disappointment
Mechanical engineering graduate Mohan Ranga's (Nithiin) sole aim is to leave for the US to lead a blissful life. He manages to get a visa on his fourth attempt as an escort to the corpse of an old lady from his neighbourhood as her family members cannot travel back to Hyderabad. He lands in New York and is in pursuit of a job with the help of a friend Vilas (Madhu Nandan) and a sponsor Ramesh (Rao Ramesh). He meets Megha Subrahmanyam (Megha Akash), his childhood sweetheart, who relocates to the US to pursue higher studies. Life turns out to be a joy ride for Mohan, who gets closer to Megha after a road trip. The duo are poles apart in attitude, outlook and temperament but they fall for each other. Their relationship hits a snag when she jets off to Coonoor.
Cast: Nithiin, Megha Akash, Lissy, Rao Ramesh
Direction: Krishna Chaitanya
The film's story is provided by Trivikram, while the dialogues, direction and screenplay have been handled by Krishna Chaitanya of Rowdy Fellow fame. The problem with the film is that the story resorts to using tired clichés as key conflicts between the lead characters. Sample this: Megha cannot forget Mohan Ranga and is forced to consent to marry a person she's never met. If it’s Baldev Singh (Amrish Puri) for Simran (Kajol) in Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge, here it’s Mrs Subrahmanyam (Lissy) for Megha, who wants her daughter to get married against her wishes.
The first hour of the film largely draws its strength from the comedy. At times, you may find the narrative boring, but you sit through with patience expecting razor sharp writing and astute twists due to Trivikram’s involvement in the film. Unfortunately, though, the film is painfully predictable and meanders too much. The treatment isn’t entertaining either as the writer explores the tired subject of dysfunctional families, showcasing the strained relationship between daughter and mother.
Like Trivikram's earlier film A...Aa, the mother calls the shots here as well and the daughter has neither a say in her marriage nor doesn’t she get any emotional support from her father, who gives her space to cope with her difficulties but doesn’t console her.
As the film's second hour kicks in, the film completely goes off the rails and it becomes clear that the writer-director duo had no idea where to go with the story as they introduce some insignificant secondary characters just to provide some laughs. The force-fit comedy proves to be overkill. By the time the lead pair realise their mistake, brush aside their egos and get back together in the end, you’re completely drained.
This is one of those films where the audience knows that the story will have a happy ending and one of the supporting characters will end up as a scapegoat, even if the confused leads themselves seem clueless.
Megha Akash fails to bring believability to her character. Nithiin lacks confidence and this is definitely one of the most poorly etched roles he has essayed in recent times. Although some early scenes between them evoke laughter, their characters are neither likable nor do they share any chemistry. It’s surprising to see a fine actor like Rao Ramesh wasted in a stereotypical role. And Sanjay Swaroop, too, only has and insignificant role to play, without any notable dialogue, even during the climax! Lissy, Narra Srinu, Madhu Nandan, Prabhas Srinu and Satish don't make much of an impact with their performances.
The much-hyped pedda puli song which garnered accolades from renowned American singer Akon stands out in the first hour. Besides that, none of the songs are appealing on screen and two of them are poorly placed too.
If you go in expecting something different because of Trivikram’s name, then you are in for a disappointment as this film is entertaining only in parts.