A cruel trick on viewers

A cruel trick on viewers

It’s a title well chosen as the ultimate con is on the viewers. In yet another example of expectations falling flat 15 minutes into the film, Mr 420 tries hard to tickle the funny bone and give relief to all the stressed-out souls out there.

It ends up adding strain to the stress. Here’s how. Krishna, an orphan, is persuaded by his uncle Rama (?) to join him in the city and look ‘forward to life’. The only hitch is that Rama is a pickpocket on the ‘hitlist’ of a police inspector (whose name is drowned out in the scratchy sound design employed in the film plus an over-enthusiastic audience).

Disgusted with his maava, Krishna tries to return home but is forced to seek his uncle’s help. Then on, it is not even a half second for Krishna to transform into one of the finest pickpockets in Bangalore.

Things would have gone smooth but for Rukmini, the lady with the scooty, who had oh-so-charmingly helped Krishna with money to go home in the first place. Cupid chooses his aim with care, and maava Rama has to bear the brunt. A livid Rukmini forces the two to abandon their ways and make an honest living. Maava-sodaraliya go along... till they a find a head in an abandoned suitcase. Sounds familiar?

Pradeep Raj cannot match the energy he displayed in his first film Kirataka (with plenty of help from its original Kalavani). There’s no dum in the dialogues either. Madhu and Pradeep could have stuck to dishing out an 80s fare not bothering to tweak it unnecessarily but their confusion brings the film down and ah, the sound design...
Giri’s promising eyes and hands are bound by low budget but still manage to bring some excitement in a shot here and there. Harikrishna’s work brings back the question — does money really help an artist forget worries and give the best?

Only one soft song holds attention, for its duration, mainly due to the location and Giri’s camera. Chandru’s action sequences are neat while Mohan Pandith’s work also suffers due to budget limits.

Not enough attention has been bestowed on the lead pair. Ganesh’s suave self doesn’t lend itself to rugged, rustic roles even after films like Shyloo. Praneetha remains a carefully sculpted life-like doll — she has a long way to go in emoting when not rushed. Raghu is left to ham his way out of the dead scenes but proves an eyesore or turn-off for heterosexuals with his lifting his top every now and then!

And what goes on as comedy is too loud and garbled to be made much sense of. Stories like this one are predictable at best. But Mr 420 teaches a devoted movie buff not to have any expectation at all. Pity the waste of money here.

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