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Prasanna Vadanam Movie Review - A compelling thriller

May 3, 2024
Little Thoughts Cinemas, Arha Media
Suhas, Payal Radhakrishna, Rashi Singh, Nandu, VivaHarsha, Nitin Prasanna, Sai Swetha, Kushalini
Edward Stevenson Pereji, Kandala Nitish
Karthika Srinivas R
Kranthi Priyam
Ashwanth & Prathibha Reddy
Varada Venkatramana
Tejaswi Sajja
Vijay Bulganin
Manikanta J S, Prasad Reddy T R
Arjun Y K

'Prasanna Vadanam', produced by Manikanta JS and Prasad Reddy TR, was released in theatres today (May 3). In this section, we are going to review the latest box-office release.


Radio Jockey Surya (Suhas) suffers from Prosopagnosia, also known as face blindness. Thanks to his rare, irreversible mental condition because of which he can't recognize faces or facial expressions, he falls into a soup when he gets framed in a murder case. His woes multiply when it turns out that powers-that-be could well be after him. In his quest for salvation, he has none to fall back on. His sympathy for a dead woman named Amrutha (Sai Swetha in an extended cameo) doesn't help. Meanwhile, his girlfriend (Payal Radhakrishna), ACP Vaidehi (Rashi Singh) and SI Ramachandra (Nithin Prasanna) have a stake in what he does next. These characters come with divergent motives.


Suhas didn't get to experiment much with his expressions in 'Ambajipeta Marriage Band', his only overrated movie to date. In the film under review, however, he tries his hand at versatility. He shows both vulnerability and timidness. Payal Radhakrishna plays Kathya, his love interest. The actress has a mellowed presence in the larger scheme of things.

Rashi Singh is effective as a cop who can put her weight down in the police department. Nitin Prasanna is good in terms of how he shows fear. Viva Harsha as Surya's friend is natural.

Technical aspects:

Cinematographer S Chandrasekaran deploys minimalistic camera angles. The muted colour palette also complements the dark mood in the second half. Vijai Bulganin's music is never loud; it also goes hand-in-hand with the dark mood of some scenes. 'Ninna Monna Naalona' and 'Po Po' pass muster. Karthika Srinivas R's editing and Kranthi Priyam's art direction are adequate.


Writer-director Arjun YK weaves a compelling thriller around a tricky premise. What happens when your physical disability turns out to be your biggest undoing in a series of rare coincidences? That's what the film taps into. It is not like the film has multiple twists. There is one solid twist and the cat-and-mouse chase screenplay follows from it.

Usually, in a lot of crime thrillers, you can fairly guess the twist or nature of the characters on the go if you walk into the theatre after knowing the exact placement of the twist. For example, if reviews have revealed that there is a twist in the pre-climax phase, the thriller becomes easy fodder for guesswork. In contrast, 'Prasanna Vadanam' packs in its twist in an unexpected manner.

The power dynamics in the police department have been portrayed with healthy regard for reality.

The love story is not overbearing. When the negative characters are not around, the film becomes conversational and even feel-good. Suhas' character finds the right rhythm when he tells the heroine that only she has the right to make the decisions about her life.

On the flip side, one wonders why the male lead, despite being an RJ with a following of his own, doesn't think of leveraging his network or the social media to bail himself out of an existential crisis. There are coincidences that are unnatural. For example, just when Surya goes to the parents of a key character, a crucial detail about their child is being discussed openly. It is so convenient. A key character trying to trick the male lead in the climax feels like an elaborate contrivance when that character could have achieved the intended outcome in far less complex ways.

Closing Remarks:

'Prasanna Vadanam' is a well-made thriller with neat performances.

Critic's Rating