‘Bangaru Bullodu’ movie review: Unappealing gold rush

A family/social drama premise gets squandered by cringe-inducing comedy

The only redeeming aspect of Bangaru Bullodu is Allari Naresh, who with all his earnestness, tries to hold things together when a half-decent plot gets diluted with ribald comedy and spirals downhill.  

  • Cast: Allari Naresh, Pooja Jhaveri
  • Direction: P V Giri
  • Music: Sai Karthik

Naresh plays the lead character Bhavani Prasad, who is a bank employee and the grandson of the village goldsmith (Tanikella Bharani). He is weighed down by family responsibilities and later, with the moral responsibility failing which the family risks losing its reputation. He enacts the serious portions and the few comic sequences required of him quite well, but the script is a huge letdown.

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Bangaru Bullodu begins well and manages to hold some interest until intermission. There are different threads to this story, which, if leveraged well, could have made for a part-fun, part-serious comic social drama.

But no, the tone keeps shifting from the serious to the mundane, desperately trying to bring in some laughs, in vain.

There’s a secret surrounding the jewels that adorn the village deity and the veteran goldsmith (Tanikella Bharani plays this role with sincerity) hopes to set things right, with the help of his grandson Prasad. The two have to constantly watch their backs even at home, with Prasad’s older brothers (Satyam Rajesh and Prabhas Srinu) who are addicted to gambling. Their card games take them to strange places and make them do strange things, like one of them pretending to be a corpse to escape the police. Forget being funny, these segments are just boring.

In trying to find a solution to his grandfather’s problem, Prasad gets entangled in a web of deceitful acts as jewellery from the bank lockers keeps changing multiple hands. Since the story involves a family of goldsmiths, every other character that pops up has something to do with jewellery. Posani Krishna Murali enters as the money lender who would even keep a snake as surety for money!

To this mix, add the craze for an NRI groom. Kanaka Mahalakshmi (Pooja Jhaveri as Posani’s daughter) dreams of a luxurious life abroad. Much later in the film, there’s a fun sequence involving an NRI family harping on Godavari culture and tradition, and the snake. The comedy in the film falls mostly into the slapstick category, with very few of them eliciting laughs and others just grating on the nerves.

When the deity’s jewels go missing and a shrewd cop vouches to catch the culprit, the story perks up. But then, the director squanders the chances by introducing cringe-inducing comedy in the form of a thief opting to cross dress to remain incognito.

By the time the mystery is solved, Bangaru Bullodu becomes a test of patience.

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