Movie Review: 24 Kisses
Adith Arun, Hebah Patel, Rao Ramesh, Naresh and others
Director - Ayodhya Kumar
Producer - Sanjay Reddy, Anil Pallala
Banner - Respect Creations
Music - Joi Barua
Tollywood is progressing! Lip-locks are slowly becoming a prominent feature in Telugu cinema. However, adult content is yet to take over big-ticket movies. It is currently restricted to low budget films and filmmakers who are looking to make a quick buck. 24 Kisses is one such attempt to cash in on the current trend. It is directed by Ayodhya Kumar who made a meaningful film like Minugurulu before.
What is it about?
Anand (Arun) is a children's filmmaker who is struggling to find funds for his upcoming feature film. He gets attracted to his film student Sri Lakshmi (Hebah) and their romance takes off when he plants a kiss on her. Although Anand is physically attracted to Sri Lakshmi he is not ready for a committed relation. Meanwhile, Sri Lakshmi gets to know about his previous sex-capades and breaks up with him. How do they unite together is the crux of the story.
Adith Arun who resembles actor Ram a lot is a decent actor. He suits the character of a struggling filmmaker and a romantic. Hebah Patel is alright. She couldn't emote well but does her bit without any reservations. Rao Ramesh goes overboard as the psychiatrist. Naresh keeps it simple and does a neat job. Aditi Myakal is the only notable actor among remaining star cast.
Ayodhya Kumar is clearly caught in a confusion of whether to make a full blown masala movie or a meaningful one. He couldn't convince himself on making either and takes a middle route that messes up the whole film. His direction has been pointless throughout the film with random scenes and silly conversations.
A couple of songs are good to hear, but there are far too many songs that are not needed. Cinematography is okay and art work is good at times. Editing is pretty bad. There's nothing to talk about the production values.
24 Kisses is an attempt to cash in on the current trend where movies based on adult themes are turning out to be money spinners. It might have worked if the director's sole target is to make a moneymaking masala movie. But Ayodhya Kumar tried to throw in his sensibilities and ideologies in to a film that is mainly based on sex and kisses. This has messed up the whole film as the conflicting themes failed to go hand in hand.
First half of the film focuses upon the romance between the lead pair. It mainly focuses upon the 24 Kisses they share before taking their relation to the next level. It could have been better if the kisses are canned in a special way with some strong reason behind each. However, we cannot see anything beyond lust and overflowing bodily fluids in the passionate kissing scenes. All the kisses happen at a very quick time without strong emotion or an established relation.
With all but one of 24 Kisses happening in the first half, the director had no content to run the second half. Therefore he tried to focus more on the ideologies of the protagonist who cares for poor children. This part never synced into the main thread of the film and sticks out like a sore thumb. Another thread involving Rao Ramesh is done for comical purposes and it is an absolute pain to watch.
The story is dragged beyond imagination in the second half as if the director didn't know how to take it forward and how to end it. Anand rejecting to marry Sri Lakshmi for some stupid reasons is strictly not needed. The film's runtime could have been shortened by thirty minutes without stretching it with unnecessary conflicts. The second half is so torturous that it can be screened to criminals to make them confess to their crimes. 24 Kisses is a film without a single positive about it. This is easily one of the worst movies of the year.
Verdict: Third Degree Torture!