Om Namo Venkatesaya

Ism Movie Review - 2.5/5 - It's SAD'Ism

Cast: Kalyan Ram, Aditi Arya, Jagapathi Babu, Posani Krishna Murali, Tanikella Bharani, Vennela Kishore and Others
Directed by: Puri Jagannadh
Produced by: Nandamuri Kalyan Ram
Banner: NTR Arts
Music by: Anup Rubens
Release Date: 2016-10-21

Puri Jagannadh's Ism has created interest among the film buffs with hard hitting promos and the makeover of Kalyan Ram. It is a film based on the journalistic ethics and which highlights the power of a journalist. It is a typical Puri film with a promising climax.

What is it about?

Satya (Kalyan Ram) falls in love with Aliya (Aditi), the only daughter of mafia don Javed Ibrahim (Jagapathi Babu). She doesn't like him at the start, but slowly gets attracted to him. Satya just uses her to get closer to Javed so that he could execute his mission at the right time. Why does Satya target Javed? What is the intention behind his actions?


Nandamuri Kalyan Ram is at his best in this film. Puri not only brings change in his appearance but also in his body language and performance. There is certain ease and arrogance in Kalyan Ram in this film. This is by far his best performance. Aditi Arya suits the character, but needs to hone her acting skills. Jagapathi Babu is good in the film, though his character is not written in an effective way. Posani Krishna Murali is as loud as usual. Tanikella Bharani, Vennela Kishore, Ali are good in the supporting roles.


Puri Jagannadh has picked up a promising plot and executes it in his typical style. This film should have been an intense one considering its theme. Puri's relaxed and casual approach fails to make it an engrossing watch. Court scene has been written and executed well. If only the rest of the film is half as intense as the court scene, Ism would've have been a far better film than what it is now.

Music by Anup Rubens is passable. Cinematography is good. Rich locations like Tenarife Island and Morocco have been captured beautifully. Editing is alright. Dialogues by Puri lacked the punch. Production values are very rich. Visually the film is super rich and on par with a superstar's film.

Thumbs Up:

Kalyan Ram's Makeover

Court Scene

Thumbs Down:

Casual Screenplay

Typical Puri template 


A journalist targeting a mafia don and the black sheep of the society is an intense plot on paper. Instead of dealing it in a realistic way, Puri follows the commercial template by introducing the protagonist as a street fighter and a stalker. Like we have seen in many films, the protagonist uses the heroine to get close to his target.

At least the villain character should be powerful to get us hooked to the proceedings. But Jagapathi Babu's character is portrayed in a funny way and he doesn't look threatening at any point. It is all cakewalk for the hero who executes his plans without any challenges. First half of the film is like every other Puri's film with hero running after the heroine.

Second half seems a bit better as Puri gets to the point. Director highlights sensitive issues like farmer suicides and multi-billion scams, but fails to strike an emotional chord. Even the execution of hero's big plans like hacking the bank systems has been dealt on a light note, which fails to make an impact. We cannot take the film seriously despite its relatable theme. It is just another commercial film with a message.

Court scene in the climax stands out amid all the mess. Puri's dialogs are pretty impressive and so is Kalyan Ram's performance in this particular scene. If not for this scene, Ism would've been a totally purposeless film. It's high time that Puri changes the hero-heroine track in his films. The love track turns intolerable after a point that we get impatient every time heroine enters the frame. Keep your expectations in check if you are planning to watch it. Ism has the potential but in the end it turns out as just another Puri brand masala film with stereotype characters.

Verdict: It's SAD'Ism