Khiladi Movie Review: A perfect recipe for disaster
Srikanth Vissa’s story has its characters in an old-fashioned template and eventually it gets unfathomable as the logic goes off the rails
Formulaically designed by blending genre tropes of a heist thriller and a crime actioner, Ravi Teja’s Khiladi fails to please the audience of either genre. It is an unfortunate mess of a film about a most-wanted criminal Mohan Gandhi (Ravi Teja) who is serving his sentence for a crime he has committed (?). Then we have a psychology student Pooja (Meenakshi Chaudhary), who wants to do her thesis on Gandhi’s case. In the process, she gets to know that Gandhi has allegedly killed his family members, including his wife Chitra (Dimple Hayathi) and his in-laws (Murli Sharma & Anasuya Bharadwaj). The lone survivor in Gandhi's murder story is his child, who is fond of her killer father. Moved by the plight of Gandhi, Pooja is determined to go out of her way to bail him out of jail. What happens next is nothing but an assault on our senses!
Srikanth Vissa’s story has its characters in an old-fashioned template and eventually it gets unfathomable as the logic goes off the rails. Despite setting up its premise in an intriguing manner, Khiladi loses steam early on. There are too many twists that add little value here, and by the time the film reaches its climax, all you feel is restlessness. The restlessness is complete shock at the surreal climax, which would definitely beg its writer to rework or rewrite the script.
Khiladi doesn’t work because it’s amateurishly directed (by Ramesh Varma) and also because even those scenes of Ravi Teja’s long chases are so tackily filmed. Even then if you survive this film’s every other flaw, chances are you will be exhausted by those relentless action sequences, twists, and the usual stock of skimpily dressed women (unfortunately, the two female leads) and belly dance numbers. As you step out of the theatre from the distressing feeling of this fallacious enterprise, you cannot help but understand that this is a failure of epic proportions.
To call Khiladi a time pass fare or an enjoyable experience is to profess that you really don’t have a life. Because apart from two foot-tapping mass numbers -- Atta Soodake and Catch me Catch me -- this Ravi Teja-starrer offers little by way of entertainment. Yet, it may appeal to the ardent fans of Ravi Teja who are more than willing to forgive the fact that this tasteless film has no plot to speak of, yet unfolds at a sluggish pace over two hours and thirty minutes.
On the performance front, we have often seen Ravi Teja play a similar role, and as Mohan Gandhi, he is no different in his portrayal. Arjun Sarja, as an honest CBI officer, is intriguing, but he is short-changed by the script. Devi Sri Prasad’s music is pedestrian and doesn’t bring any value to the story.
After delivering a resounding hit with Krack, it’s disheartening to think that Ravi Teja has used his star power or image to get such an atrocious film made, which in turn only spoils his reputation.
I assure Ravi Teja fans that watching his Unstoppable episode with Nandamuri Balakrishna will more likely make you smile than this painful boring movie that shrewdly wastes the charm of your favourite actor.