Starring: Venkatesh, Nayantara, Posani Krishna Murali, Prudhvi, Showkar Janaki.
Dir by Maruthi
As actors get older, they often fall back on a comfortable nostalgia. Maruthi does just that in Babu Bangaram, with frequent references to Venkatesh’s past hits. The upside is that Venkatesh never appears to be self-indulgent but is a ‘hero’ who extracts howls of laughter from the audience. He plays an emotional cop, ACP Krishna, whose eyes begin to water at any sob story. He hears Sailaja’s tale of a family in ruin because her father Sastry (Jayaprakash) is on the run, wanted for a murder. Sailaja is struggling to make ends meet for her family of four sisters, mom and grandma (an impressive Showkar Janaki) by running a mess. He decides to play saviour. The tale unfurls with some twists. But an interesting story is stretched too far. Venkatesh shares too much screen space with comedians Prudhvi and Posani Krishna Murali. The laughter palls soon. Maruthi struggles between portraying Venkatesh as the tough cop and the soft-hearted Krishna. But he is lucky—Venkatesh is pitch perfect in comic timing. Nayantara looks astonishingly slim, but her role is boring. The stand-out action scene culminates in Venkatesh pulling a goon through mid-air, propelling him forward. The music, by Mohammad Ghibran, is forgettable.