Mindless comedies work only when certain aspects of the film don’t go overboard, that where many remakes have fallen flat recently. This Masala, marinated and cooked, leaves you with no complaint or bad taste of that sort. Masala is undoubtedly a thorough entertainer, one because the children will freak out on the obviously juvenile dialogues, the rest of the audience will smirk at Kovai Sarala’s dances and hamming skills and Ali-JP Reddy’s encounters and of course the primary crowd pullers — Venkatesh and Ram — ensure that they hold the film together. The gladdening aspect is while you are through with half the film you notice that the decibel levels are surprisingly low and tolerable, those who’ve watched Bol Bachchan will not fall off their chairs because most of the punch lines have been faithfully translated; For instance Ramzan lo Ram untaadu Diwali lo Ali, I cut him horizontally (nenu vadini addanga narukutaanu) and fruitables etc. If we are waiting to see Anil Ravipudi’s dialogues to gauge his skill, this might not be the film because all the lines are an exact replica of what we’ve heard in the original. Even the temple, it’s lock in the opening scene and names like Sania are a direct lift from the original Hindi film which is turn was a rip off of the old Golmal.

Venkatesh as Balram plays a feudal lord who abhors liars, is fond of English. He employs Rambabu (Ram) as a dance teacher for his sister Meenakshi (Shahzahn Padamsee). Rambabu is actually Rehman who has faked his name for survival and his sister’s marriage. Now Rambabu is compelled to tell one lie after the other till both the master and employee land on a cliff settling scores during the climax. Being part of a comedy is not new to Venkatesh, here he butchers English with confidence and complements his brother-in-aw Rehman (Ram) quite well and the duo cause a riot in a medley of songs that comes just before the break. Ram with his effeminate expressions plays his part to perfection and never oversteps in Venky’s territory.

Anjali and Venkatesh, the hit pair from Seetamma Vakitlo Sirimalle Chettu have been repeated. While the former thrills with her slightly subtle act, the latter is all over with his transliterations. The film is lavishly shot, all the artistes are prominent names and are good in their places.

Director Vijay Bhaskar hits bulls eye without any exaggeration, and tones down all the crude innuendos we’ve heard in Bol Bachchan. The canvas is huge, colourful and the negative role by Posani Krishna Murali is an asset to the script, anyone else in his place might not have had the same impact. Songs, re-recording and cinematography all stand out and Vijay Bhaskar who made this for the target audience i.e the masses and the producer who aimed to make it big deserve all praise.

MASALA

Cast: Venkatesh, Ram

Director: K. Vijay Bhaskar

Music: Thaman

Genre: Comedy

Plot: A youth fakes his identity to an employer who hates liars

Bottomline: It is absurd but fun, if you haven’t watched the original