Behind the Movie Ganga: Lawrence popularized the horror-comedy series of Muni in South India. When the first two in series (Muni, Kanchana) stood out as commercial hits, third one ‘Ganga’ is also embraced well in Tamil Nadu. Facing lot many hurdles, ‘Ganga’ has hit the Telugu screens today. Let us see, how entertaining is this third installment in ‘Muni’ franchise?
In the Movie Ganga: Story begins with introduction of Raghava (Lawrence), a timid personality working as cameraman in a TV channel. The channel management plans a marketing tactic to go up in TRPs by creating a horror show to be shot in Bheemili in the direction of Nandini (Tapsee) with Raghava as cameraman. Channel crew chooses a spooky house in Bheemili beach shore to set in artificial ghosts for their script. You can guess on. The real spirits eventually haunt and chase the crew. Meanwhile Raghava is in love with Nandini. Story takes a known path when six devil spirits including Ganga (Nithya Menon), Gundu Shiva (Lawrence) enter into Raghava and Nandini to complete the revenge. Who is Ganga and Shiva? What is their story all about?
Values of the Movie Ganga: The horror-comedy template of Lawrence created for ‘Muni’ is still working fine even in this third installment. Difference is just a change of premise and backdrop. If Raj Kiran, Sarath Kumar capped the revenge rationale in first parts, it’s Nithya Menon this time. Rest, it’s the same fun and similar treatment. In this way, ‘Ganga’ is clichéd and a dated format. What makes difference is, wonderful acting of three leads (Lawrence, Tapsee, Nithya) and realistic treatment of flashback. Script wise, there is plenty of predictability. It’s the direction with fun filled execution transcends all the drawbacks. Dialogues by Sashank Vennelakanti are just average. Rajavel Olhiveeran’s camera work is conventional. Kishore Te’s editing could have improvised the exhaustive second half. SS Thaman’s musical score was good in first romantic song canned well and BGM vitalized the final thrill. VFX for climax portions mirrored Hulk kind of fights in climax. Production values of Bellamkonda Suresh are subtle.
Performance wise, Lawrence is a gifted actor. He can play any number of characters on the same screen with tremendous ease making audience to sense the differentiation. His cowardice histrionics in first half are just an extension of ‘Kanchana’ and romance with Tapsee entertained. Lawrence uplifts his acting skills to top with Gundu Shiva’s soul possessed Raghava’s body. On female part, Tapsee is a complete contrast from her regular bubbly image. She was amazing in glamorous look. She outperforms Lawrence in first half with spooky expressions bedeviled by Ganga. Coming to Nithya Menon, what an astonishing artistshe is. You just fall into sympathetic eye with the authentic portrayal of physically challenged. It is Nithya who adds the story value for movie. Among the rest, Kovai Sarala advances her Arava comedy. Manobala, Sriman, Pooja Ramachandran, Renuka, Suhasini, Bhanu Chander etc did their portions.
Out of the Movie Ganga: When Lawrence is trying a tested formula with popular mould, he could have driven with much regularity. Instead, the hard work in penning of characterizations and executing the plot with balanced dose of comedy and horror ingredients made ‘Ganga’ a passable fare.
First half restored the expectations of audience. There was copious fun with accurately placed situations generating the much needed goose bumps. Entire Bheemili episode is worth a time-pass. Tapsee in fact steals the show single handedly closing interval on a shocking note. Lawrence is restricted only to humorous portions with first half story driven in Tapsee’s direction. Once the twist in tale is revealed by taking us into flashback mode, the narration drags and drags instilling boredom. Comedy becomes loud and over the top like an exact reflex of pure Tamil flavor. Climax is graphically well worked on but bland and easy calculable. However, the efforts of Nithya Menon in showing a final impact on audience are to be beholden.
All in all, ‘Ganga’ is a decent show of Lawrence, Tapsee and Nithya. Commercially, the film is sure to mint gold at BO especially in lower order centers. Except mediocre second half, ‘Ganga’ scares and entertains equally throwing a glimpse at ‘Muni 4’ in the offing.
Cinejosh Verdict of Ganga: Laughter in Fear.
Cinejosh Rating: 2.75/5.0
Reviewed by Srivaas