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Movie Review: Manyam Puli
Cast: Mohan Lal, Kamalini Mukherjee, Jagapathi Babu, Namitha, Kishore, Vinu Mohan and Others
Music: Gopi Sundar
Cinematography: Shaji Kumar
Dialogues: Rajasekhar Reddy
Story & Screenplay: Uday Krishna
Release Date: 2nd December 2016
Mohan Lal won the hearts of Telugus with 'Manamantha' and 'Janatha Garage'. He now wishes to create a market for his Malayalam films. 'Puli Murugan', the first-ever Rs 100 crore grossing Mollywood flick, is being dubbed as 'Manyam Puli' in Telugu and it released Today in good number of screens.
Kumar (Mohan Lal) who was born in the forest loses his parents in the childhood. He wants to take revenge on the Tiger which killed his Father and executes the plan successfully. Since then, Kumar keeps rescuing the people everytime they were attacked by the deadly Tigers in the forest region. Because of his brother, Kumar leaves the forest area and starts working for Daddy Girija (Jagapathi Babu) in the town. After sometime, Kumar and Daddy turn into arch-rivals. Why did that happen and how Kumar overcame the challenge ahead him forms the rest of the tale!
Mohan Lal walks away with top honors with his screen presence, natural performance and breath-taking fights. He has got the knack of getting into the skin of any character. The hardwork put in by him in the stunts at this age could be seen on the screen.
Kamalini Mukherjee performs well. However, The glam quotient went missing completely.
Jagapathi Babu does pretty ordinary stuff. There is nothing special about this character either. Namitha appears in the role of vamp. Lal and Kishore are alright.
The Two Songs composed by Gopi Sundar are passable. It's his Background Score which elevates the heroism to a whole new level. The humming, Puli ra..Puli ra..Manyam Puli ra..' hits the right chord. Shaji Kumar's Camera Work in forest sequence is praise-worthy. Picturization of Action Blocks by Peter Heins is the major highlight. Production Values are appreciable, when compared to the budget constraints in Mollywood. Neither Story nor Screenplay makes the viewer glue to the screens. Seems like, Director Shaji Kumar's sole aim is to please the fan base of Mohan Lal with every scene. He, however, fails to leave a mark of his own.
Mohan Lal doesn't bother much about his image or stardom while picking up subjects. That's why we were able to see him in films such as 'Kalapani' and 'Manamantha'. Obviously, Telugu Audience would assume a Rs 100 crore grossing Mollywood blockbuster 'Manyam Puli' to be a very different subject. Anyone who expects this Mohan Lal-starrer to offer something afresh will be left disappointed as its just a routine commercial movie.
Storyline of 'Manyam Puli' is wafer-thin. Even the Screenplay isn't gripping enough. People doubt if this movie has really collected a revenue of Rs 100 crore. But then, It's the beautiful locales in forest region of Kerala, thrilling action sequences and terrific background score stand out.
Telugu Audience can't connect much with the heroism-elevation scenes of Mohan Lal as people here treat him more like an actor than a star. Scenes of Mohan Lal after he shifts to the city were tad boring. The characterization of Jagapathi Babu and his performance are below par. There is lag in the Second Half. Telugu Audience feel the film to be slow paced even after 20 minutes trimming of the Malayalam version.
Climax saved 'Manyam Puli' from ending up as a disaster. The 15-minute action sequence designed by Peter Heins is marvelous. Overall, 'Manyam Puli' is a regular commercial entertainer with a forest backdrop.
Bottom Line: Only For Hardcore Mohan Lal Fans!