Producer Prem Kumar Patra (of Aa Naluguru and Vinayakudu fame both of which won Nandi awards ) comes up with a decent and righteous theme again. But this time he has failed in roping in a director who could have embellished the plot in a compact manner. Not that he could have made it a bit glossy for the commercial market, he did fill in song and dance but the point is the theme itself is very utopian, illogical and could have been easily wound in a little more than an hour. Just to drag the screen time the audience has been treated to unnecessary details of the five characters.
Director Anil Jason’s debut feature film is a far cry from his first short film Key, a gripping drama starring Jagapati Babu. The auteur’s central character is Raghuram (Vasu) an IPS officer turned politician, a Chief Minister who creates NGF (Next Generation Force), a pilot project, the aim of which is to make it compulsory for a person in each family join the Police Force. The goal is to train them and send them back as conscientious, peace loving and good citizens for a better society.
The film opens with the CM saying that politics should be taken as a profession, reservation should be based on financial status and governance should be measured by its work and not tenure. The ex-CM (Nagineedu) is peeved with the pet projects unleashed by Raghuram and feels that Venkat (the coach in the police academy) and CM Raghuram who are friends are aiming at consolidating their vote bank for the next 30 years by using NGF to take the State ahead.
Now, the ex-CM and another character (Posani Krishna Murali) plant their man to create differences amongst the trainees. The next half of the story is about how the five characters termed unqualified and unfit are asked to leave the academy, save the CM from being assassinated later on. Filmmakers should strive to stay away from clichés, killing one of the lead characters in the climax in every patriotic story.
The Censor Board cuts the word Andhra Pradesh in the opening scene spoken by a character but retained the visuals of the ‘Andhra Pradesh Police Academy’ curiously. Writer Suddala Ashok Teja plays the role of a man who lives on his family occupation singing Oggukatha and prohibits his son from joining the Police Force. One of the five heroes, Kranthi who played the silent lead in Mallela Theeram Lo Sirimalle Puvvu is seen in a gregarious role but the Telangana dialect doesn’t suit his soft look. Henceforth, we will find many filmmakers showing a fair amount of characters speaking the dialect whether it is required or not for obvious reasons.
The director likens the five characters in the story to Pandavas, Venkat as Dronacharya and CM Raghuram as Krishna. The characters go about their job mechanically. A little more spark would have brightened up the screen. Main characters joining Police Academy for a goal to be revealed at the latter stage is an outdated concept. The camaraderie or the scenes at the academy give us a déjà vu feeling. Last ten minutes of the story is interesting but poor screenplay and dialogues mar the show. Asmita Sood is for the glamour quotient in a cop’s dress. Cinematography is the only asset. There is a dialogue in the film that goes…idhi praja swamyama ledha panchatantra katha? This holds good for the film too.