Shambo Shankara - Movie Review

Friday, June 29, 2018 - 23:15
Shambo Shankara (2018)
Cast & Crew: 

Film: Shambo Shankara
Cast: Shakalaka Shankar, Karunya, Ajay Ghosh, Ravi Prakash, Nagineedu and others
Dialogues: Bhavani Prasad
Music: Sai Kartheek
Cinematography: Rajasekhar S
Editor: Chota K Prasad
Action: Nandu, Jashuva
Art: Raghu Kulakarni
Producers: Y.Ramana Reddy and Suresh Kondeti
Story, screenplay and direction: Sreedhar N
Release date: June 29, 2018
CBFC Rating: UA

‘Shambo Shankara', starring Shakalaka Shankar as a quintessential Telugu cinema hero, hit the screens this Friday. Let's find out what works and what doesn't with this latest release.


Shankar (Shakalaka Shankar) has this life-time dream of becoming a cop and standing up to injustice in his native village, where a powerful president (played by Ajay Ghosh) exploits people with the support of officials and a brutal Sub-Inspector.  Even though he is eligible to become a cop, a conspiracy by the SI breaks his dream.  

The hero's sister falls in love with the president's villainous son and meets with a fatal ending.  Shankar, a firebrand youngster, now becomes uncontrollable.  What does he do after his sister's death? How does he go about becoming the village's glorified hero and eventually destroy the villain? That's the second half.


When Shakalaka Shankar decides to become a mass masala, mainstream, all-powerful and 'Basti me sawaal' hero, nobody can stop him. So, this film is made like a show reel of his powers, either inborn or derived by worshipping Pawan Kalyan or both. Scene after scene, Shankar is glorified as if he is meant to fill the vacuum created by Power Star's (temporary) retirement from films.  

To give you a taste of the kind of heroism Shankar bombards us with, let's talk about this episode where our hero dares the village president for stealing ration stocks and becomes a leader instantly. This is when a song starts and its tempo is reminiscent of 'Singanna Bayaluderene' from Rajinikanth's 'Arunachalam'. If Shankar were not Pawan Kalyan's fan in the movie, you can be forgiven for thinking that he is busy worshipping himself actually.

The villain (Ajay Ghosh), who starts looking like a joker in the second half, is suspected by our hero to have plotted to kill him using RDX. Upon questioning him, this president tells the hero that he knows Medimix and XXX but not RDX. 

Something terrible happens to the villain just before the interval. But post interval, he seems to have moved on. The director sets his eyes on elevating Shankar's heroism, forgetting the story altogether. 

Every alternate scene is about some injustice or the other, some travail or the other, some tragedy or the other. And these are narrated in an outdated fashion. For example, the hero speaks at length about the plight of farmers and two odd minutes later, the government officials are reformed, remorseful and promise to do justice at the earliest. They dig up a bore well and all problems are solved in a jiffy. Time for song.

Our hero's lover (Karunya Chowdary) is sorry that he is not giving her enough time now that he has become the village's full-time people's leader.  She comes to him and stages a hartal. Shankar, who was known to the Telugu audience as a comedian till yesterday, tells her upfront that he is people's man (he almost says it), imitating whichever mass hero he knows. Even a Nagarjuna or a Venkatesh would have thought twice before having such a scene even in their heyday.

Instead of focusing on his forte (comedy), Shakalaka Shankar has behaved as if he were a Simhadri or Indra or a Samarasimha Reddy or a Gabbar Singh. When he gets emotional, you got to observe him closely to realize that his dialogue-delivery has the tempo of a Gummadi or a Prabhakar Reddy.  

Ajay Ghosh, Ravi Prakash and Nagineedu are like caricatures. Karunya and others go for a toss.  

Bottom-line: 'Shambo Shankara' is an outdated, boring mass-y movie that has a budding comedian Shakalaka Shankar as LEAD hero. Many of the scenes are actually look like spoof. The film tests the audience's patience.

Reviewed by: 
Vishwanath V