Ism - Movie Review

Friday, October 21, 2016 - 14:15
Ism (2016)
Cast & Crew: 

Film: Ism
Nandamuri Kalyan Ram, Aditi Arya, Jagapathi Babu, Gollapudi Maruthi Rao, Tanikella Bharani, Posani Krishna Murali, Vennela Kishore, Jayaprakash Reddy, Ali, Eswari Rao, Ajay Ghosh and others
Music : Anoop Rubens
Cinematography : Mukesh
Editing : Junaidh
Songs : Bhaskara Bhatla
Fights : Venkat
Art : Johny
Producer : Nandamuri Kalyan Ram
Story - Screenplay - Dialogues - Direction : Puri Jagannadh
CBFC Rating: UA
Release date: October 21, 2016

What's it about?
In an island near Morocco, Sultan (Kalyan Ram) involves in fights for quick bucks. He sees a girl Alia Khan who bets on the other fighter and falls in love with her. He follows her daily and proposes but she refuses. She is daughter of Javed Ibrahim (Jagapathi Babu), India’s most-wanted don hiding in this island country. Javed runs Paradise Bank where all big Indian businessmen, politicians hide their black money. Sultan also befriends Javed and tricks him. It turns out to be that the reason why he is after Javed’s daughter is to know the secret password to Javed’s banking system. Sultan is a journalist and his real name is different and he is operating a WikiLeaks kind of system. What happens next is the story.

Puri Jagannadh has dedicated this film to journalists and begins the movie with a note marking his respect towards Julian Assange and other such crusaders. In the first half of the movie we don’t understand in what way Assange is connected with this story because “Ism” begins in regular style of Puri movies with hero running after heroine, demanding her to love him, etc. Like most of his recent movies, the film also happens in an exotic place. The first half of the movie mostly focuses on this thread – Kalyan Ram wooing the heroine and meeting Jagapathi Babu. The movie comes into the story part towards the interval bang from there it begins to create some interest.

In the final part of the movie, Puri has stressed on the topic of ethical hacking, bringing black money from off shore to India and reward the common public with that. All this happens before the climax comes. The movie’s crucial scene happens in a court when police arrest him on the charges of hacking bank and present him before the Judge. This scene has come out so well and effective both director Puri and actor Kalyan Ram have given their best.

While this part is interesting, rest of the movie doesn’t hold interest and give feeling of déjà vu. The subject has potential to make riveting mass entertainer but it needed better screenplay. The other advantage the film has racy short runtime (2 hours 12 mins).

What a makeover of Kalyan Ram! He has completely changed into a better actor and star. Puri has changed his acting style completely. Kalyan Ram has shown so much confidence while performing the tough scenes too. This is his best look and performance in his career.

Newcomer Aditi Arya lacks acting skills. Jagapathi Babu as Javed Ibrahim has suited well in the role but the characterization is so weak. Vennela Kishore provides some comedy. Among other cast members, Tanikella and Posani  shine. Anup's music is decent but the background score is good. Cinematography and production values are rich. As writer and director Puri Jagannadh has shown his command in court scene but he needs to reinvent himself as his screenplay has become too formulaic.

Bottom-line: Puri Jagannadh has been following a similar template of screenplay from longtime. ‘Ism’ too goes in same way but court scene towards end of the movie, Kalyan Ram’s new look and his performance stand out. Typical Puri mark movie!