Cast: NTR Jr, Mohan Lal, Samantha, Nitya Menen, Devayani, Sai Kumar and Others
Directed by: Koratala Siva
Produced by: Naveen, Mohan, Ravi Shankar
Banner: Mythri Movie Makers
Music by: Devisri Prasad
Release Date: 2016-09-01
Much awaited Janatha Garage is in theaters now. It was surrounded by gargantuan expectations for many reasons. The combination of Tarak and Mohanlal and director Koratala Siva's knack of churning out blockbusters and Devi Sri Prasad's impressive musical score seemed like nothing can go wrong for Janatha Garage. Unfortunately many things have gone wrong for it. Tarak and Mohan Lal's performances and a couple of well written scenes saved it to an extent.
What is it about?
Sathyam (Mohan Lal), a mechanic sets up a garage called 'Janatha Garage' in Hyderabad. He and his men start helping the people who are in troubles. Sathyam's son (Unni Mukundan) doesn't like his father's charity work. He takes the crime path and gets beaten by Anand (Tarak), a nature lover. Sathyam confronts Anand after that incident and likes the young man's intentions. Sathyam asks Anand to join Janatha Garage and help the needful. Rest of the story is about how Anand and Sathyam continue to do their good work.
NTR: Tarak has come up with a subtle performance. He usually plays it to the galleries, but you will see a new Tarak. His performance in the scene where he comes to know about his roots is excellent. His dances in a couple songs will be a treat for his fans.
Mohan Lal: With terrific screen presence and spotless performance Mohan Lal is one of the biggest assets of the film. He and Tarak shared a superb screen chemistry that made this combination click. We cannot imagine any other actor doing this role.
Samantha and Others: Female leads didn't have much scope, but Samantha did well in an emotional scene. Nithya Menen's character offers some light moments. Sai Kumar is decent. Unni Mukundan is okay. Devayani is good in Lal's wife character. Ajay and Rajiv Kanakala characters make an impact among other characters. Kajal sizzled like never before in Nenu Local song.
Koratala Siva is known for delivering blockbusters with time tested formula. Janatha Garage plot also doesn't have any freshness. Koratala left an impression with a couple of emotional and elevation scenes. But this is not his great work as a writer. The story moves at a snail's pace and the screenplay is not impressive. Siva's direction is good in emotional scenes.
Koratala Siva's dialogues are good in key scenes. Music by Devisri Prasad is one of the highlights of the film. His background score also is a plus. Editing could have been better. The film is too long and drags at times. Cinematography is particularly impressive. Lighting and color patters are in tune with the mood of the film.
Flat first half
Janatha Garage is a story driven film with a nice dose of commercial elements. The drama unfolds at a slow pace. Director takes his time to introduce his main characters. Most of the first half is dedicated to introduce the characters. Mohan Lal's character is highly active and dominates the scene in the first hour while Tarak's character as nature lover remains passive during this part.
The plot thickens only after Tarak comes to Hyderabad and confronts Mohan Lal's son. Koratala elevates Tarak's character with a wonderful episode involving Rajiv Kanakala as a Government employee. Things look rosy during this part as Koratala Siva seemed to be in full command of the proceedings. However, he failed to maintain the same tempo until the end.
There is a powerful scene during the pre-climax which could have elevated the film to another level if it was followed up by a good climax. Koratala utterly failed in executing the climax which could hamper the movie's chances at the box office to an extent. The movie may not appeal to all sections of audience due to its grim appearance and slow pace.
It may impress Jr. NTR fans and the audience that likes serious action dramas. Except for a couple of well conceived scenes and stellar performances from the male leads, Janatha Garage is strictly an average fare. Let's see how far can Tarak pull this off after the initial hype and buzz dies down.
Verdict: Janatha Garage - Powerhouse Performers