Some combinations instantly raise expectations like one that of Puri Jagannath and Balakrishna. As we know, Puri is a master in elevating the heroism and Balayya is a lion when it comes to high voltage action. So, Paisa Vasool gathered all the heat before release. Let us see, how Theda is this Theda Singh?
Bob Marley (Vikramjeet Singh), a Mafia don operating from Portugal controls Hyderabad remotely using his agents. Unable to bear the atrocities of Bob Marley, Indian police looks for a Neech Kameena like Theda Singh (Balakrishna) to hire on an unofficial operation to elimiate Bob Marley. Through IPS Officer (Kyra Dutt), immediately Theda joins on the mission but only to get into the trap of his neighbor Harika (Musskan Sethi), who is on the search for her missing sister Saarika (Shriya). There are many twists in the tale… how are Theda Singh and Saarika connected in a Portugal flashback? What is the actual identity of Theda Singh? There’s a flashback to reveal many unknown facts and a climax for happy ending.
From the very name of his protagonist Theda Singh, director Puri Jagannath hinted on how Theda film he made. Still struck in his Pokiri template, yet again Puri wasted the brilliant opportunity of exploring the best in his most powerful star hero Balakrishna. Instead, Puri made every bit a fool out of audience by churning silly comical bits which looked strange on the heroic stature of Balayya. Addicted to some crazy film making in last few years, Puri continued to test the same style even on star hero, which is definitely uncalled for and unpardonable. Except Theda Singh characterization, definitely entire story or script Puri (if) had on paper was filled with unprofessionality.
Direction wise, Puri never appeared serious in his storytelling. Majority of the scenes really made no sense. When opening and climax scenes happened one after the other in chronology, why the heck is this 130 odd minutes tormentation in the name of screenplay, one of the patrons was complaining while leaving the auditorium. Dialogues were good only in parts and the ones written in first half on Balayya, Musskan track are of lowest quality while Balayya modulation made them at least bearable.
Mukesh G’s camerawork offered nothing new and framings followed the old school of Puri Jagan films. Editing by Junaid had too many sharp cuts and the rescue episode of Shriya in Portugal is the best. Anup Rubens musical score is just average with couple of eneregtic tunes and background score is also the same. Production standards from Bhavya Creations need a pat because how come Anand Prasad invested good money into this sort of feeble making is still a big question?
Onto artists, Balakrishna is a cent percent a director’s actor. He surrendered himself to captain of the ship and just followed Puri instructions unworried on what the final output will be. As Theda Singh, Balayya made fun of himself forgetting the stardom factors. While Fans are to enjoy only a part of the antics but he seems to have thoroughly enjoyed playing Theda character. Coming to stunts and dialogue delivery, age factor was evident throughout both in body and voice. Musskan and Kyra are wrong picks. They appeared more as vamps and less as lead ladies. Shriya took control of second half with all her experience in portrayal of a betterly written character. While Vikramjeet Singh is just passable, Kabeer Bedi and others are acceptable. Ali’s comedy did not appeal much. Prudhviraj and others just made their appearance felt.
Opening, ClimaxBalakrishna SincerityDialogues Here n There
Puri Jagannath DirectionMusskan, Kyra First HalfPathetic Film Making
Having watched Puri’s last few debacles, it would be a sin to expect any miracles happen in Paisa Vasool. So, he did not disappoint us or jumped any far above our calculations. Paisa Vasool continues the weakest form of Puri but only one point to feel pity is Balayya Babu who believed so much in Puri. From picking a thin storyline with enough meat in it to sketching a wayward screenplay and unskilled direction, Puri remembers audience with each every episode that he is no more the same whom you saw in Pokiri times. One thing for sure is, when Puri comes out from Pokiri hangover, we can expect better films from him.
Beginning the first half on a promising note by introducing us directly to main antagonist, immediately Puri’s narrative begins to slide down from Balakrishna’s entry with title song. Gettign him onto an undercover job or Theda taking on the local gangs, everything reminds us of Pokiri style but nowhere close to the classic. The thread of Prudhvi used to interwine with main plot is also weekly dealt. Kyra is just hopeless in these parts. Musskan and Balakrishna episodes are also shabbily handled. Traveling on a bumpy screenplay, as we get close to interval block…Puri appeared promising for few minutes opening some twists on Musskan closing the first half on a very mediocre mark.
Second half takes us directly to Portugal flashback and once again the agony continues. All the scenes on Balayya, Shriya though can be handled entertainingly but Puri clearly lost his touch. Once again unveiling Theda Singh as RAW Agent Nandamuri Bala did not comeout as great as Mahesh Babu’s pre climax police act in Pokiri. Dialogues here on National integrity and patriotism are out of place. Once the locks are widely opened, rest of the last 20 minutes odd are a ritual climax. But here, Puri tried to spark a new fangled screenplay connecting it with opening scene. All in all, Paisa Vasool is not a paisa vasool film for common audience. For Nandamuri Fans, it is just partly acceptable and entertaining for Balayya characterization. Blame it on Puri Jagan for whatever the disappointment one has. In Box Office terms, the film hasn’t got any steam to hold on long. CJ rates Paisa Vasool with 2.25 stars.