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MCA (Middle Class Abbayi) – Movie Review

I cannot put into words just how much this film BORED me. Even Nani couldn’t save this snooze-fest.

2.5 hrs after the movie started, it breaks into a song. Now, I never had a problem with lengthy run-times as long as the movie is engaging and it doesn’t make you feel like you’ve wasted your time and money. But this film wasn’t even a decent fare to start with and just prolonging the run-time by stretching the film to fatigue is not going to help your cause. MCA, directed Venu Sreeram (director of Oh My Friend starring Siddharth and Shruthi Hassan), is a mostly a crushing bore from start to finish, barring the very occasional funny scenes.

MCA revolves around the story of Nani (Nani), a “middle class abbayi”, of course, whose relationship with his Vadina (Bhumika Chawla) goes from strained to “she’s like a mother to me” after one “emotional” scene involving actor Naresh, a few bad things conjured up by the villain Shiva (Vijay Verma) and 2 hrs of other boring stuff.

The first half is the lesser of the two evils. It’s less punishing. Probably the only non-boring parts of the first half, and even the whole film for that matter, are the scenes involving Nani and Sai Pallavi. Priyadarshi’s role is a disappointment as the actors get very less to work with and in a film as bland as this, Priyadarshi-Nani combo could have been utilized to turn things for the better. Bhumika Chawla as the Vadina is okay-ish, but is mostly limited to being the quiet, respected woman. She barely speaks two full sentences at one go and this may be justified as her character trait but honestly, this even limits the character. Bhumika is serviceable but in this day and age with wonderful actors showing up from nowhere and setting the screen on fire, serviceable is not okay. For a character that’s being projected to have a steady moral compass, she offers money to an MNC in exchange for a job for Nani. I wish there were more meat to her character and more weight in her acting to lend the role respectability than sarees and a simple makeup.

The second half nosedives to a point from where there’s just no recovery. The writing turns COMPLETELY unimaginative save for the pre-climax portion. But this twist to the events comes too late, by which point all you can think about is what you’re going to eat after the film. The second half stretches too much, so much so that it becomes a mini-film in itself. For a film as predictable as this one, writing needs to be at least decent. Here; even that falters. Nani’s character is Nani’s character in almost every film these days. This is not to say that he’s not doing different kinds of movies (he is) but his characters all seems like cousins, each rubbing off their traits to the next or in some cases even being very similar to one another, and Nani is lending all these roles a very generic performance that at one point, it seems like you’ve seen it all, that you’ve seen him do a similar role, in a similar way. He’s not bad. I don’t think Nani can ever be a bad actor, but it’s just that I am tired of Nani being Nani in literally every movie. It might be working in favor of these films (it did here as well) but how many more movies until we find him breaking out of the groove and surprising us?

DSP’s music is catchy but nice songs are the last thing this film needs. I’m going with a generous 2 out of 5!

PS: All the images are screenshots from the film’s official trailer on YouTube.

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