Review: Idhe Maa Katha

‘Idhe Maa Katha’ hit the cinemas today (Oct 2). Let’s find out what are its hits and misses.

Story:
Four individuals from different walks of life go on a road journey to Ladakh. If Srikanth plays a business tycoon with a love failure haunting him, Bhumika Chawla is a housewife whose late father’s unrealized dream to present a ‘jugaad’ version of Royal Enfield has to be realized at the earliest. As for Sumanth Ashwin, he plays ‘Adventure’ Ajay, who live-streams his risky bike-racing stunts on his YouTube channel. Tanya Hope plays Meghana, who hopes to put her love failure behind and move on in life.

How the four lives come together to participate in the next edition of the Royal Enfield motorcycle racing event in Ladakh and the four individuals share a strong bond in the course of the story is to be seen on the big screen.

Performances:
The film is strengthened by fairly strong performances. Both Bhumika and Srikanth, in that order, don’t make us miss young actors. They are consistent and, in fact, outperform the youngsters in the movie. Sumanth Ashwin, after playing routine romantic roles, here plays a spirited youngster and his performance is commendable. Tanya Hope of ‘Appatlo Okadundevadu’ fame is impressive as well.
 
Prudhviraj, the comedian who hasn’t been seen in movies of late, is fine. But he is shadowed by Saptagiri’s ability to extract laughs. Srikanth Iyyangar as Sumanth’s father and Sameer as Bhumika’s husband are routine.

Technical Departments:
This may not be a technically splendid movie, but the production values are worthy. Sunil Kashyap’s background music does full justice to the Ladakh portions, where even an action scene is staged. Cinematographer C Raam Prasad, who is working on big-ticket movies like ‘Akhanda’ currently, is efficient with his work.
At 143 minutes, ‘Idhe Maa Katha’ doesn’t overstay its welcome.

Analysis:
Usually, road journey movies are replete with ‘I want to chill, bro’ vibes. The characters do things for the sake of seeming happy. Writer-director Guru Pawan tells a different sort of a road journey movie, something that may not be entirely engaging but that is not boring either.
 
Srikanth, as a business tycoon, takes time to come into his own. The initial portions are laced with dull moments wherein we are shown that, 25 years after falling in love, he hasn’t yet moved on after love failure. The husband-wife equations in the Bhumika Chawla track are cliched. We find Tanya Hope’s rebellion against her two-timing boyfriend quite over the top. Sumanth Ashwin’s problem with his money-minded father is another cliche.

But once the four characters cross paths accidentally, they attempt to find their mojo. Although the Devadas feel to Srikanth’s story could have been avoided, the emotional connection is strong. The element of Bhumika deriving inner strength from her daughter is well-intentioned.

Portraying Sumanth Ashwin as an over-confident guy is another interesting aspect. The film doesn’t overdo with the backstories of the characters. 

The second half could have been more content-driven than it already is. The screenplay makes a few lazy choices, especially the segment involving moral police. The characters move from one place to another (Chambal, Jhansi, Nagpur, Ladakh, among others), but the geographical variation is not felt. The Tanya-Sumanth love track is not soulful either.

Bottomline:
‘Idhe Maa Katha’ is watchable for its premise, characterizations, and decent emotional content. But it gets many things wrong, too. 

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