World Famous Lover movie review: Vijay Deverakonda film is about messy relationships, Arjun Reddy hangover is unmistakable

World Famous Lover
Director: Kranthi Madhav
Cast: Vijay Deverakonda, Raashi Khanna, Aishwarya Rajesh, Catherine Tresa and Izabelle Leite

Kranthi Madhav’s World Famous Lover is an intense romantic drama built on the conundrum of compromise, sacrifice and selflessness. The film follows a struggling writer – played by Deverakonda – and the events that follow in his life after he gets dumped by his girlfriend (Raashi Khanna). Taking inspiration from the line from Imtiaz Ali’s Rockstar that goes – “to become an artist you need heartbreak”; the film allows one to differentiate between fantasy and reality through the stories Vijay creates while imagining himself in different characters and with different women.

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If Arjun Reddy was a world created by a selfish, hot-headed and alcoholic surgeon, World Famous Lover is the manifestation of a disgruntled writer who has to go through multiple heartbreaks to truly understand what he’s messed up in reality. Somewhere, the film tries to emphasize on the fact that it takes a lot of effort and commitment to make relationships work and it isn’t as easy as how it’s usually portrayed in movies. This is effectively portrayed through the relationship of Gautam (Vijay) and Yamini (Raashi Khanna). Yamini feels entrapped in a loveless relationship which once was full of life. When she decides to leave Gautham, he hopes to win her back by writing again, and we are introduced to the world of Seenayya (Vijay Deverakonda), Suvarna (Aishwarya Rajesh), Smitha (Catherine Tresa) and Isa (Izabelle Leite). Through each story, Gautam learns something about love and the experience helps him understand what went wrong in his relationship with Yamini. But when writing stops, reality hits him hard like a ton of bricks.

Call it obsession or Arjun Reddy syndrome, Vijay Deverakonda is starting to get fascinated with the idea of messy and dysfunctional relationships. As much as you want to treat World Famous Lover as an original story, you can’t ignore the Arjun Reddy hangover, especially in the second half and towards the climax. Of the four stories, the segment featuring Vijay as Sreenu and Aishwarya Rajesh as Suvarna really stands out, and it deserved to be made into a complete film. Thanks to the Telangana dialect and some quirky writing, Vijay’s performance in this segment really establishes the fact that he’s still got lot of untapped potential. Raashi Khanna as Yamini shines in what’s supposedly one of her most intense characters.

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Arjun Reddy worked to some extent because it was the story of a jilted lover which was portrayed as realistically as possible. World Famous Lover turns the realism into a sobfest and it gets unimaginably boring when the story shifts to Paris. In spite of overall great performances, the film falls flat and there’s nothing anyone can do about it.

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