'V' is currently streaming on Amazon Prime Video. The biggest direct OTT release to have come out this season, the Telugu-language film stars Nani and Sudheer Babu in lead roles. What does the film have in store? Does it work at all? Let's find out!
DCP Adithya (Sudheer Babu) controls a riot on the streets of Hyderabad like a true super-cop and gets decorated. On the same night, a fellow cop gets brutally murdered by a serial killer (Nani), who challenges the DCP to trace him. Adithya forms a team to nab the killer, only to be challenged with one more gruesome murder. The DCP knows for sure that the antagonist aims to kill more, including the son of a Minister. To his luck, the DCP gets help from the killer's deliberate clues, which are decoded by Apoorva (Nivetha Thomas), a novelist. But can he successfully nail the case?
If there is one role that Nani should have stayed away from, it's this. As Vishnu, a serial killer with a painful past, he is not just unimpressive but also a big let down. Sudheer Babu, who gets more number of scenes than Nani, is okayish. Nivetha Thomas gives a very lame performance. Aditi Rao Hydari is interesting in the two or three scenes that she gets. Vennela Kishore, Tanikella Bharani, Rohini and others are wasted. The less said about Adarsh Balakrishnan and Harish Utthaman, the better.
PG Vinda's cinematography is adept. If he shows his class, SS Thaman manages to do justice to the genre with his background score. Amit Tridevi shows sparks of his talent with 'Vasthunna' song, but that's there to it. Expect nothing more from the songs. The pub song and the party song are forgettable.
The first act is staged fairly well. Other than the first 20 minutes or so, there is nothing that holds.
Did the makers call 'V' a mystery drama? Truth to be told, mystery in the film is limited to a dozen bullets refusing to hit Nani in unison.
The flashback episodes fail to create any interest in the rest of the second half. When an orphan marries an orphan, we all know what happens in our films, especially when the son of a political heavyweight is a bad guy.
The dialogues are a disaster. In the entire career of Mohanakrishna Indraganti, he must have penned uniformly lousy lines for the first time. When he is seething with revenge, pray, why does Nani obsess himself about filmy references to K Raghavendra Rao and Boyapati Srinu? Ridiculous!
At one point, Nani's character comes across like a rip-off of Vikram's character in 'I', minus all its ominous vibes. Our directors need to get inventive with serial killers. They can't keep showing the same done-to-death tropes and expect the audience to sit at the edge of the seat. Not done!
It is going to take you some time to unsee the silly romantic track involving Sudheer and Nivetha, who would have been convincing only if she were a honey-trap. Nothing else could have explained the rank stupidity of the track.
Wasn't this film called an action drama? Indraganti should have called it a 'shootout non-drama where bullets are sprayed without hurting anybody much' film.
Expectations from Nani were high after 'Jersey'. Although 'Gang Leader' was an immature film, it delivered some laughs at least. 'V', unfortunately, is a crashing bore that doesn't hold any suspense, much less mystery.
Director Indraganti apparently wanted to project Nani as an action hero with the film. The Natural Star becomes the Unnatural Non-Star in trying to emote menace. There is no menace in him. Or, maybe, the director didn't know how to bring it out.