In colloquial Telangana Telugu, ‘ bombhaat’ is used as a remark of appreciation - ‘super’, ‘awesome’... However, the Telugu science fiction romance drama bearing this title, now streaming on Amazon Prime Video, is an ordeal to sit through. There is neither innovation nor an attempt to package old wine in a new, appealing bottle. At best, this film could have been a PSA for using science for constructive purposes.
- Cast: Sai Sushanth Reddy, Simran Choudary, Chandini Chowdary
- Direction: Raghavendra Varma
- Streaming on: Amazon Prime Video
For the first 45 minutes, we get a detailed account of the hero Vicky (Sai Sushanth Reddy) being unlucky, through a series of tacky sequences. He gets slapped by his lady love Chaitra (Chandini Chowdary). The next 44 minutes are devoted to reconstructing the events that led to it. We learn that when Vicky was born, his father (Tanikella Bharani) got distracted into watching a film shooting featuring Ramya Krishna in the hospital compound and by a turn of fate, suffered paralysis that took 10 years to heal. Meanwhile, the boy had been branded as a harbinger of bad omen by everyone. A voiceover by ‘fortune’ equates him to a black cat!
The boy meets professor Acharya (Sishir Sharma) who urges him to believe in science, not superstition. So is this a story of the boy learning to use science to silence his detractors? Not a chance. He just grows up with the unlucky tag, somehow impresses Chaitra and now risks losing her.
There’s no hint of anything scientific or interesting happening on the screen until Vicky meets the professor’s daughter, Maya (Simran Choudary), and learns that she is a humanoid. He wants her to act as his girlfriend, stoke jealousy in Chaitra and win her back. What do we know? The humanoid actually loves him. Chitti anyone?
Almost half the film is done by then. In between, we get a glimpse of a supposedly ‘mad scientist’ (Makrand Deshpande) who escapes from an asylum and an aged don who lusts after Maya. The cringe-inducing conversation between professor Acharya and the don made me wonder how anyone in the core team thought the audience would accept something this inane as comedy.
‘I wish I could feel pain’, the humanoid Maya tells Vicky at one point. Viewers are most likely to feel the pain.
The love story is drab, the comedy banal and the good Vs evil battle all the more boring. Sushanth tries to be charming and earnest but there’s nothing he can do to lift a listless film. Both Chandini and Simran go through the emotions with a ‘because we were asked to do so’ attitude and they can’t be blamed.
‘ Daridram’ (misfortune) is a word we hear a lot in the opening portions of the film. The misfortune is more for film critics who have to watch the film till the end. There’s no other, gentler way of putting it.
(Bombhaat streams on Amazon Prime Video)