Lost his sheen, talented filmmaker Ravi Babu is making meaningless films of late. Aaviri is another horror-thriller from the director who also played male lead sharing screen space with Neha Chauhan and Priya Vadlamani. Will this latest attempt provide him a much needed break and how far the golden hand of Dil Raju helped Aaviri?
Ever since the death of little girl Shreya, elder daughter of entrepreneur Raj Kumar Rao (Ravi Babu) and his wife Leesa (Neha Chauhan), their family witnesses weird happenings in their newly shifted house, though it is fully secured. Their younger daughter Munni (Baby Sri Muktha) behaves abnormal and tries to escape from house. Who is the unwanted guest and why it is causing troubles to Raj Kumar Rao’s family?
Aaviri is considered as one more typical Ravi Babu film set on the standards of Avunu. But few minutes into the film, one gets a feeling that we are lost. Story fails to draw a parallel between mother-daughter sentiment and how a sinful flaw committed by father affected entire family including his two daughters. Asthama disease used to connect the basic sufferings of two kids is actually a good stuff. Screenplay by Sathyanand is so badly written and less than two hours of run time appears more than a four hour watch. Instead of thrills and frills, we start to laugh our hearts out in serious episodes. Direction, very rarely do we find Ravi Babu mark. Music by Vaiddhy is acceptable and so is the camera work by Sudhakar Reddy, editing by Marthand K Venkatesh. Production values of Flying Frog banner are just ok.
Onto performances, Ravi Babu got a full length role. Most of the time he spends on his company’s merger with a Japan company hitting actual content to a six. Sometimes, he made us laugh even in serious eerie situations. Neha Chauhan is decent and her over-shouts in second half will leave viewers in fever. The little girl Baby Sri Muktha who played younger daughter Munni is good. Bharani Shankar and Mutkthar Khan did their parts. While Priya Vadlamani of Husharu fame is a key for climax, Himaja made her presence in first half.
Like every horror movie has its premise set in a house, here too Ravi Babu picked an age old bungalow where proceedings unveil. But the difference is Ravi Babu showed his color sense and visuals looked bright, of course not the content. While the basic plot is pale, the way Ravi Babu’s screenplay brings actual twist at the very late hour served major obstacle in the slow paced narrative. Situations are familiar and so called thrilling episodes failed to evoke any excitement. Characterizations lacked spine and climax which is expected to be something different centered on Ravi Babu and a tiny flashback connected to his office employee is so silly.
First half begins on encouraging note with the death of Ravi Babu’s elder daughter in swimming pool. Following scenes establish mother-daughter bond and episodes shot on younger daughter’s misbehavior is typical Ravi Babu style. Repeated trials of younger daughter to escape from the house are boring. In between comes police friend Mukthar Khan to aggravate the pain. Interval goes dim and unflashy while Neha Chauhan as Ravi Babu’s wife steals the show to an extent. Himaja as baby sitter is very brief.
Into second half, observing the CC TV footage and the eerie things happened in house is again foolishly handled. Bringing in Occult Science professor (Bharani Shankar) to crack the evil spirit or the way spirits run away from heat and high temperatures is executed awfully. Hide and seek between Ravi Babu, Bharani and evil spirit is a laughing stock. Finally, the steam room trick and flash back on Priya Vadlamani will beat our sweat out.
All in all, Aaviri is one more ignorable film for Ravi Babu. Except Dil Raju being the brand associated with, there is nothing to ignite us. Having lost his midas touch, Ravi Babu’s name might slowly disappear from main stream Tollywood if he continues to make films of this poorest quality. CJ goes with 2 stars and save your-self from getting steam boiled.