It is still a Wednesday but we don’t follow any rest days at Popcorn Reviewss. So with the same momentum I finished watching the new Telugu film The Ghost which is now streaming on Netflix. We have always been an audience that enjoys a good action entertainer. But one key to many action films is how effectively they are able to hit home with the emotional quotient of it. If it is just action without any emotions then the film in general would fall flat. So then does The Ghost manage to impress, lets find out.
Story & Screenplay
The Ghost follows the story of an ex Interpol officer who would stop at nothing to protect his sister and her daughter. The story is absolutely nothing new and you will most definitely be reminded of films like John Wick or even The Transporter. There are a couple of things that were at stake for me as far as this film was concerned. Firstly, how good are the action scenes and sequences. And secondly, how effective is the motivation behind the action which could be in any form be it emotional or otherwise. While the film does score in the former, the latter is where the film falls short. The screenplay standing at about 135 minutes promises to be an adrenaline rush. And it does deliver on that account but there are many flaws that overshadow it.
The opening sequence sets the tone of the drama to follow. There is zero buildup and you see the two protagonists shooting down a bunch of people for reasons that are best known to them. While the intention was to open with a bang, this was a bit of a hit and a miss for me. And I say that because I was barely settled into the drama and I really did wish for some sort of world building at the very beginning. Because there was none, the action sequence which was very well choreographed lacked the soul as there was no emotional connect to it.
In the subsequent scenes you are given a small flashback of the protagonist before the actual story begins of him going to save his sister and her daughter. Here I must say that there was a lot of scope for the writers to form a heartwarming bond between the characters that would have paid off well as the film would progress. But the emotional angle is missing which subsequently dilutes even the most stylized action sequences. To give you a perspective, John Wick had an interesting motive that made you invest in the action that transpired onscreen. But here that same ingredient is missing that makes the drama bland.
The twists and turns are also predictable and you don’t feel a thing while watching the drama. Yes, if action is all you look for then there is plenty here in a drama that is consistently watchable. But if you are looking for more meat there isn’t much here. Even the characterization is pretty one dimensional for all the characters in a drama that even lacks a strong antagonist. The final act is watchable where the protagonist goes in full throttle mode shooting and slicing people left right and centre but the overall screenplay is weak here although supremely watchable.
Dialogues, Music & Direction
The dialogues are alright, nothing much to shout about. The music is decent but at times stalls the flow of the drama. The BGM spits fire and is outstanding. The cinematography is good, the VFX is a bit of a suspect but the action sequences are well designed. Director Praveen Sattaru does a fair job here in designing a slick action thriller but I feel he could have invested better in the emotional element of the film.
The performances are decent here. It really breaks me to say that talented actors like Manish Chaudhari and Gul Panag are absolutely wasted with almost no scope whatsoever. Anika Surendran as Aditi is decent. Sonal Chauhan as Priya looks hot and really excels in combat sequences. But this is an out and out Nagarjuna Akkineni show. He is oozes of style and is so agile even at 60! He has a towering screen presence wherein he commands your undivided attention. He is absolutely brilliant here, firing all cylinders, literally!
The Ghost is a slick action entertainer but the lack of emotional content is a big deterrent making it an above average affair. Available on Netflix.