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Mehbooba review: A cliched love story

The script and narration lacks depth and does not impress

TELUGUCINEMA.COM

Saturday 12 May 2018

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Movie Title

Mehbooba

Director

Puri Jagannadh

Star Cast

Akash Puri, Neha Shetty, Vishu Reddy, Murali Sharma, Shayaji Shinde

In Hyderabad (in India, there is one in Pakistan as well), Roshan (Akash Puri) gets dreams of getting killed right from his childhood days. In Pakistan, a girl named Afreen (Neha Shetty) suffers from similar dreams.

Afreen gets engaged to Nadir (Vishu Reddy) but she doesn’t want to get married to him and comes to Hyderabad to study Engineering as part of an exchange program. In Hyderabad, the paths of both Roshan and Afreen cross. He saves her in an incident.

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Meanwhile, Roshan gets selected as captain in Indian Army and before joining the job, he wants to go trekking to Himalayas with his friends. At the same time, Afreen gets a call from her mother to come Pakistan immediately.

An incident in Himalayas makes Roshan realize that Afreen is none other than his lover in his previous birth and both of them are reborn to unite in this birth. How will Roshan go to Pakistan to bring his Dulhan?

The theme of reincarnation is favourite for many filmmakers, it also works at the box-office. Many films were made with this theme in the past but ‘Magadheera’ comes to our memory as it was released in the last decade.

Director Puri Jagannadh has not added any new angle to this beaten-to-death plot line except one. The boy who was Pakistani Muslim has now become an Indian Hindu and the girl who was an Indian Hindu girl in previous birth is now a Pakistan Muslim girl. Other than this, he has added regular tropes that we have seen in this genre. In these kind of movies, both hero and heroine get that ‘I know you from before’ feeling, they get these vibes whenever they cross paths, some song, or place or story keeps haunting them from their previous birth.

In Puri’s film, Lata Mangeshkar’s famous song ‘Lag Jaa Gale Ke Phir’ from Woh Kaun Thi? is the trope that is used. This song reunites them in this birth. Other trope is that a villain tries to ruin their love story in both the births and borders play spoilsport to their love theme in both the births.

Puri tries to stress the point that lovers are not only reborn to get united, they can also break borders between the countries to achieve it. Well, it all seems good on paper but the lofty idea has not translated effectively on screen.

For a love story to click or engage audiences, first and foremost the love episodes should be terrific. In both the births, the lovers don’t actually indulge in “romance”. In one janma, she likes him because he saved her from a Pakistan soldier trying to take her modesty, in the current janma she likes him because he saved her from eve teasers. This ‘liking’ part is okay but for audiences to feel their love there has to be some good romantic sequences. That is totally missing.

Added to this, the songs are quite old-ish, there is no contemporary feel at all.

Even though Puri Jagannadh has used patriotic sequences and has extensively used high-end graphics for sequences, the film suffers from lack of good romance for a love story.

Fortunately, throughout the movie, we get to see the good and confident performance from Akash Puri. In his debut movie as lead actor, Akash Puri is so assertive of talent. He has it in him to become a star. Neha Shetty is okay. Murali Sharma as Neha Shetty's father is effective. Villain Vishnu Reddy irritates with loud acting. Shayaji Shinde should stop indlging in such overt acting.

The film has flashes of good writing (dialogues) but his screenplay and direction is clichéd. There is also no entertainment, and the narration is slow-paced.

Cinematography and making values are terrific. It needed engaging narration than the lavish scale of visuals.

Bottom-line: Puri Jagannadh's son Akash Puri shines in debut movie Mehbooba. The script and narration lacks depth and doesn’t impress. Despite grand production values and glittering visuals, this reincarnation love story is as clichéd as the theme doesn't appeal at all.

Mehbooba review: 2.25/5