Mahesh Babu, Pooja Hegde, Allari Naresh, Vamshi Paidipally, Dil Raju, Aswini Dutt, PVP Cinema! When you see the aforementioned names collaborate for a film, one would expect it to be a cracking affair. And Maharshi is just that. When the trailer of this Mahesh Babu-starrer was dropped, there were gleaming eyes all around expecting the film to be a feast like Haleem during Ramzan to be served to fans. But the members of this camp had something else in store for the excited group of movie buffs.
What is Maharshi about:
Rishi (Mahesh Babu) is a billionaire CEO of a software company in the US and is one of the most renowned personalities. Rishi is motivated by the challenges he faces and often is driven more because of the fear of losing. This string of the character stays through Maharshi. After reaching the pinnacle in his career, Rishi has a surprise reunion of sorts with his college gang and this brings back memories from college days which includes his friendship with Ravi (Allari Naresh) and love interest Pooja (Pooja Hegde). But they haven’t spoken in years after getting out of college. And in the reunion, Rishi gets to know Ravi is in a troublesome situation. The protagonist sets off to resolve the issue and get his friend along with him. But when he lands, Rishi finds there is a bigger issue at hand than what he anticipated. What happens next forms the skeleton of Maharshi.
Maharshi takes off splendidly and offers many moments in the first half which entertains you constantly. Mahesh Babu is the arc of this ship in the first half and provides everything a fan would ask for. Allari Naresh, in his first attempt at such a supporting role, shines exorbitantly and puts up an impressive show. Director Vamshi Paidipally seems to be clear in his head about Mahesh Babu's skillset and extracts the right balance to keep the narrative entertaining. Pooja Hegde looks beautiful in the scenes she is part of and shares an appealing chemistry with Mahesh. And as the first half concludes, the challenges begin. Mahesh Babu proves yet again why he is crowned the superstar of Telugu cinema. While being effortlessly stylish, elegance and dynamic form one part of Rishi, massy language during college phase and confidence boost the other half. Mahesh Babu deserves all the accolades he receives. Vamshi Paidipally weaves an entertaining first half and keeps the audience occupied as you hear giggles and laughs in the cinema hall.
As the second half unfolds, when you look at Rishi, you wouldn't know whether you're looking at a success-driven personality or an emotionally drained person. Things go confusingly awkward and make it tough for you to arrive at a conclusion. Shades of Srimanthudu, tinges of 3 Idiots and Janatha Garage; these feelings often crop up while watching Maharshi. Vamshi Paidipally and Mahesh Babu had a strong subject in hand but seems like their path lost track post some juncture. And not helping the cause was Devi Sri Prasad's album and background score which sounded similar to many of his previous ones. It may be unfair or harsh to say this on a day when the film is releasing, but Devi Sri Prasad needs to find his groove again, for his betterment. And we expect this to happen very soon. Jagapthi Babu drops in out of nowhere and we are not sure if he needs to be called the lead antagonist or the supporting one.
Mahesh Babu's Maharshi is like a sunny side up and it is tough to decide which side is better. With all the hype the film had ahead of release, fans would certainly find it disappointing. We go with a 2 stars for Maharshi.
2 out of 5
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