F3 Movie Review: A laugh riot
While F2 explored the frustration of married men, F3 is all about money
Anil Ravipudi, a director best known for dishing out comedy entertainers with a mix of action, drama, and romance, used money as an element to attract his audience in his latest release F3: Fun and Frustration. The film tells the story of two greedy men Venky (Venkatesh), and Varun (Varun Tej), who believe money is important and is the only quick fix to their problems. And, Anil, thankfully, didn't disappoint the movie buffs. F3, the second film in the fun franchise of F2, is one of those films, which make you laugh out loud. In fact, the film comes off as a breath of fresh air after watching a couple of mindless action entertainers.
Cast: Venkatesh, Varun Tej, Tamannaah, Mehreen, Murli Sharma
Director: Anil Ravipudi
While F2 explored the frustration of married men, F3 is all about money. Honestly, the film has no real story to speak of, at best a wafer-thin line about how a man's (here men) greed leads to misery. Hence the director often relies on slapstick humour to keep the momentum going and he succeeds to make you laugh with a lot of wisecracks.
Like its predecessor, much of the film's comedy is derived from the situations, actors, and their interactions. Prepare to laugh your guts in that scene in which Venky, Varun, and Paul Baby (Ali) realise that they were betrayed by the supremely guileful women (Pragati, Y Vijaya, Annapoorna, Tamannaah, Mehreen), with the latter repeating their ideas of scamming people.
The film is enjoyable in the first hour and does get a little tiring towards the second half, especially of the ways Anand Prasad (Murli Sharma), a business tycoon and the owner of the JK group of companies, tries several ways to deduce his real heir. It's at this stage we have to keep recollecting and connecting the scenes to Chiranjeevi's Chantabbai (1986), which also runs on a similar thread. These sequences also make us believe that the film is steeped in 1980s naivete and old-fashioned melodrama. The film doesn't take itself too seriously and the script, at times, veers down a predictable path. (A feeling similar to Virat Kohli enduring his century drought!)
Nevertheless, F3 has many moments of unadulterated humour that try to get a good laugh out of you. It's to Anil's credit that he connects all the stories competently, leaving nothing incomplete and with no character feeling cheated.
Of the leads, it's unarguably Venkatesh who emerges the star of the film, having mastered the art of using gestures and expressions his way in and out of tricky situations. He is cast as an RTO agent suffering from night blindness and he lit up the screen with his trademark humour. Credit to Anil Ravipudi for perfectly mining the family-hero image of Venkatesh and exploring his strength to the fullest. Venky was perfectly complemented by Varun Tej, who plays a man with a stutter. Together, they brought the audience to their feet.
Take their faceoff with the five women, taming a bull as a test, or even that scene in which they try to cheat one another with hapless plans or their imitation of Pawan Kalyan and Mahesh Babu's popular lines from Gabbar Singh and Sarileru Neekevvaru or their satirical take on the rise of OTT space — it is these moments and many other that make F3 such a pleasure to watch.
Murli Sharma, as Anand Prasad, gets a good role and he delivers a competent performance. One of his lines, “Prapanchaniki telisina pancha bhoothalu aidu, kani aaro bhootham okati undi...adhe dabbu (The world knows only of five natural elements, there is however a sixth bhootham and that is money)” strikes a chord with the audience. Tamannaah is impressive in her portions, especially in the second hour. Mehreen doesn't get any scope to perform and she goes missing in some of the key portions of the film.
Sunil returns to his vintage self, while Vennela Kishore, Ali, Rajendra Prasad, Pradeep, and Pragati lend support in substantial roles. Sonal Chauhan and Pooja Hegde add the glamour quotient and they are alright. Devi Sri Prasad disappoints big time with his songs and background score.
F3: Fun and Frustration is a consistently enjoyable film that's more surefooted than its predecessor. I am sure you will break into plenty of laughs seeing Venky and Varun at the top of the things. And yes, there's F4 on cards too!