Mundina Nildana: Stunning visuals can't save this film

Mundina Nildana: Stunning visuals can't save this film

Mundina Nildana

Film: Mundina Nildana

Language: Kannada

Director: Vinay Bharadwaj

Cast: Praveen Tej, Radhika Narayan, Ananya Kashyap, Ajay Raj

Stars: 2.5

The uber-cool visuals in 'Mundina Nildana' offer a lesson to filmmakers: don't be blinded by your technical strength.

Abhimanyu Sadanandan's cinematography is superbly pleasant, but 'Mundina Nildana', from debutant director Vinay Bharadwaj, turns out to be a case of beautiful pictures failing to tell a compelling story.

In today's world of Indian cinema, nothing is more infuriating than the tale of a youngster not pursuing his dream owing to societal pressures. 'Shouldn't we follow our heart?' is a question often asked in our films. The IT crowd, which once gave its roaring approval to this theme, is now tired of it.

Partha (Praveen Tej) is a software engineer desperate to get out of the rut and do what he loves (photography). Good writing can lift a generic subject out of dull predictability, but 'Mundina Nildana' is not redeemed that way.

Parallel to the underwhelming self-realisation arc, the film has the customary heart-breaks. The manner in which Partha meets his two lady loves (Radhika Narayan and Ananya Kashyap) is silly, but coincidence is a liberty we give directors in the commercial milieu. However, the drama is weightless and tedious to sit through.

'Mundina Nildana' is unapologetically targeted at the affluent, and that's fine. One only hopes Vinay doesn't expect a 'mass reception' to his film: those First World problems could elude the middle class and the single-screen audiences. Vinay is a motivational speaker and platitudes are aplenty in the narrative.

Praveen's performance is a downer and makes you wonder if he was cast. He fails to convey the emotional anguish of his strained relationships. The women, to some extent, hold the film together. Radhika is nicely restrained but beyond a point, the script doesn't elevate her character. The rising Ananya Kashyap is the best of the lot, once again showing enormous comfort in front of the camera. The songs from Vasuki Vaibhav are the biggest takeaway from the movie.

Perhaps Vinay can go beyond good intentions and give more value to 'cinema' in his next venture.

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