Now that the Money Heist Phenomena is now covered, lets move onto some of the other new releases. We covered Cinderella yesterday which was bit of a trainwreck. And now moving to the other new releases. And I finished watching the new Telugu film Paagal on Amazon Prime. This movie did have a theatrical release in August after the cinemas were open after the 2nd wave of the pandemic. The film has now found its way to the OTT space. I did not watch its trailer and so I went in with a blank slate. So then is Pagal worth your time, stay tuned.
Story & Screenplay
Paagal follows the story of a young man who goes in search for unconditional love similar to that of his mother after her demise. And in this process he meets many women. The story is quite unique although far fetched. The germ of the story is what makes it different from the other rom-coms. The screenplay is a bit of a mixed bag to be honest. It begins really well with the story of a son and his mother. That brief 10 minutes really touches you as you would find yourself smiling and also shedding a tear at the end of it. Post this flashback, things are breezy and entertaining. The first half has several comic moments that are engaging and will keep you invested throughout. The moments really manage to tickle your funny bone more often than not. The problem begins in the second hour though. What needed to be another breezy half, turns out to be stretched in parts and often a bit repetitive, not to mention a change in tonality as well. Some of the sequences will potentially bore you although the performances do keep you engaged which I will get to in my following segment. The drama also goes out of hand and the writing goes for a toss. It unnecessarily gets a little heavy as well. By the time the films gets a little back on track towards the end, you kind of may lose interest in it. That said, the second half also does have its moments and is not completely a trainwreck but the moments as few and far between. In other words, the screenplay blows hot and cold.
Dialogues, Music & Direction
The dialogues are entertaining and will force you to chuckle especially in the first hour. The music is decent, the BGM is excellent. Director Naresh Kuppili does quite a good job here especially in the first hour. He is able to extract humour and the right amount of emotions but having said that he should have edited the extra flab from the second hour for a tighter finish.
Bhumika Chawla as Prem’s mother is wonderful in a cameo. Her role of briefly 10 minutes really leaves a lasting impact. Murali Sharma as Raja Reddy is his usual best. Rahul Ramachandra as the roadside goon is hilarious and provides some amazingly funny moments. Megha Lekha as Radha impresses in a cameo. Simran Choudhary as Sophie looks pretty and does a good job. Nivetha Pethuraj as Theera is brilliant and she tries to hold the second half together when things are crumbling. Vishwak Sen as Prem is outstanding. I had watched him in the Telugu Film “Hit” last year as well. He definitely has a good screen presence.
Paagal has a unique and entertaining concept and can be watched once despite a not so impressive second half. Available on Prime.