Where Is The Venkatalakshmi Review: What is this Venkatalakshmi?
Director Kishore Kumaar tries to stick to the stereotypes of the horror-comedy genre, but he serves it up with juvenile jokes and spectacularly silly situations that just don't work
Director Kishore Kumaar (Laddu) brings back the popular horror-comedy genre with this week's release Where Is The Venkatalakshmi. The formula of this genre is simple -- make your audience laugh at their fears.
Set in the backdrop of Bellampalli, this film tells the story of two aimless youth -- Chanti (Praveen) and Pandu (Madhunandhan) -- who stalk a girl, trying to woo her. In a startling turn of events, they fall unknowingly into traps, only to be redeemed in the end.
Cast: Praveen, Madhunandhan, Raai Laxmi
Direction: Kishore Kumaar (Laddu)
With Where Is The Venkatalakshmi, director Kishore Kumaar tries to stick to the stereotypes of this genre, but he serves it up with juvenile jokes and spectacularly silly situations, like the protagonists wearing a saree and dancing in front of the lustful goons and a woman flaunting her curves in the bathroom before scaring these guys as a ghost. He is unsuccessful in weaving in a situational comedy that should gel with the plot perfectly and complement the lead characters. The dialogues of the protagonists in this genre have to be funny, but here, they are loud and adulterated.
Midway through the film, it’s clear that the writing and direction have gone bonkers and the predictability lessens the emotional impact. The narration meanders too much to arrive at its core and the treatment isn’t entertaining either. One doesn’t need an intelligent approach, but they should stay true to the genre and stick to the tone of the film. The plotline smacks of familiarity to the average Telugu audience and the conflicts too come off as outdated and implausible, with almost every character being cliche. Despite some embellishments like the popular number, Papa Neekedante Ishtam, the screenplay is embarrassingly amateurish and nothing really happens in the film.
The performances of Praveen and Madhnunandhan don't really hold up, but the blame for this goes to the poor script, which reduces them to a laughing stock. Raai Laxmi tries to take our attention away from the film's many flaws. Everything from her make-up to her costumes seems designed to make the frontbenchers' jaws drop. Pankaj Kesari, who plays a crucial role in the film, is reduced to a stock caricature.
Despite having a cast with some potential, director Kishore Kumaar has failed them miserably. The only thing that works in this poor excuse for a film is Hari Gowra’s music and background score.