Sarileru Neekevvaru Movie Review: Mahesh Babu Rehashes his Okkadu with a Slight Dookudu Twist


Somewhere around the interval bang, we have the hero (Mahesh Babu) asking his friend, where they are standing, the friend replies “Konda Reddy Buruju” and backs up saying “neeku vasthu ikkda correct” (meaning you have a great astro/locational advantage here). That was the location of heros’ (read Mahesh Babu) launch to stardom in the 2003 blockbuster Okkadu. That line delivers the message from the hero and the director that, they are playing it safe. Stick to respective success formulae.

In story that can be described as “Saving Private Ryan” meets “Okkadu”, we get a fair dose of laughter, thanks to some good lines and great comic timing of the support cast. The script is both the strength and weakness of the movie. The Indian Army is shown as dysfunctional corporate unit that has a one-man solution for everything. A cruel minister is reduced to a corporal in the army as retribution. The police, legal and political authorities fill in as clowns in the circus.

Anil Ravipudi’s F2 formula script is filled with punches and one liners that are given a million come backs. Funny for the first time, fizzling out on repeat. While the humour lightens up the intensity of the drama, it dilutes the characters. The characterization of all the lead characters is unbalanced. Every single character is reduced to a comedian, which makes us wonder if they can be taken seriously. The background score is heavily inspired by the soundtrack of URI, which now stands symbolic for anything Indian Army. The music has nothing to boast about and like the rest of the technical aspects including cinematography is highly template driven.

Mahesh Babu rehashes his Okkadu with a slight Dookudu twist in almost every frame. Intense to begin with and comic by the end. Vijayashanti’s comeback could have been better. She is reduced from a “Prathighatana” style teacher to a eulogy singing support to Mahesh Babu.

Prakash Raj reprises his previous roles with sincerity although his character is betrayed by the writer. Rajendra Prasad is wasted in a sidekick role, however the other sidekicks (read heroine gang) hold your attention with some good work by Rashmika, Rao Ramesh Sangeeta and Ajay. 2 stars for dishing out a pongal which can be called “Saving Milk Boy” and another half star for the laughs.