Adhugo movie review: This Ravi Babu adventure comedy has an interesting premise, but boring execution

Hemanth Kumar

November 08, 2018 14:31:36 IST


It’s not every day that you come across ideas like Ravi Babu’s Adhugo in Telugu cinema. This is a film where a piglet, named ‘Bunty’, becomes the cynosure of all eyes. While Bunty holds the key to great riches for quite a few gangsters, his master moves from pillar to post to find Bunty. There are four gangs, and a young couple, who are out there to either kill Bunty or save him from a certain death. Why is everyone after this seemingly harmless piglet?

To begin with, he has a distinct birthmark which, an astrologer says, is a sign of good luck. And then, in another scene, the piglet is subjected to a lot of pain by a goon who is too eager to get rich. In a way, the piglet becomes an elixir for everyone around him. Whoever possesses him, will have a lot to gain from life. As interesting as this premise might sound, both Bunty and the viewers are subjected to increasing levels of agony as the narrative progresses. This is a film which wants to treat its lead character, Bunty — the piglet — with great care and affection, but also can’t resist butchering the story in the name of comedy.

Teaser poster of Adhugo. Facebook

Teaser poster of Adhugo. Facebook

The film is about a lot of people and their aspirations. There’s Abhishek (Abhishek Varma) and Raaji (Nabha Natesh), a young couple who are in love with each other, but Abhishek’s lack of focus in life doesn’t go well with Raaji. There’s ‘Six Pack’ Shankar, a gangster who wants to illegally grab a lot of land in Amaravati. Then there’s a Gutkha kingpin who has a lot of anger issues and an annoying habit of spitting on his gang members. And competing with him is another goon who is into human trafficking. Clearly, there’s a lot going on in the world of Adhugo. And one fine day, Bunty brings all of them together and it turns into a crazy ride within no time.

As far as ideas go, Adhugo is quite exciting; however, writer and director Ravi Babu chops every ounce of Adhugo’s soul to fit into his version of comedy and adventure. When he made his first set of films like Allari, Ammayilu Abbayilu and Party more than a decade ago, his sense of humour was unlike anything that was being made in those days. Cut to 2018, nothing has changed in his style of storytelling, especially when it comes to comedy. Now, it looks too tacky and silly. In the first act of Adhugo, we are introduced to the film’s young couple Abhishek and Raaji. There’s nothing endearing about their relationship, and Abhishek’s eccentric behaviour, which is so typical of several Ravi Babu’s comedies in the past, is jarring. Nabha is the damsel in distress in the plot, and Ravi Babu doesn’t allow us to empathise with anyone in the film, except Bunty to an extent.

The good thing about Adhugo is that everyone is on their toes. The film doesn’t expect us to invest our time into a particular subplot or characters. But then, there are so many subplots moving and intertwining at such a fast pace that you just give up after a point. And it just gets even more bizarre as it progresses. One of the most jaw-dropping moments in Adhugo is a spitting contest between the piglet and a gangster. If you end up laughing in that sequence, maybe this film is indeed for you. But if you are left scratching your head about the stupidity of using such a scenario to evoke laughs, then you know why Adhugo is such a big mess.

Is it a kid-friendly film? The image of a cute piglet pulling off backflips and acrobatics, and seemingly harmless gangsters, might give you an impression that it’s suitable for kids, but you’re better off watching content on ChuChu TV than having to watch Adhugo. The tacky visual effects are the least of its concerns. Even if Bunty was a better-looking piglet, he couldn’t have saved Adhugo from being such a terrible experience. The problem lies in its writing, the tone of the narrative, its comedy which swings between bizarre and crass, and over the top acting by almost everyone in the film. If anyone wants to trick you into watching the film, you should do what Bunty does quite often in the film - Paaripo! (run away).

Updated Date: Nov 08, 2018 14:31 PM