NTR Jr. might not have the presence of NTR. He might not have the aura of NTR. He might not have the finesse of NTR. He might not have the stylish dialogue-delivery of NTR. But, er, what was the point again?
The point is that this is incredible! Right from the very first Seema flick, there has been absolutely no dilution of the old formula. And Samba tries to continue the trend, throwing all the goodies in short packets of excitement, then throwing in some rancid cliches to even it out.
The first thing you do in a faction movie is to find a location that has a bit of holiness attached to it. This serves two purposes. It adds to the melodramatic schtick when the God-like hero is introduced. The second being that it saves the makers a lot of time when they have to frantically offer prayers if their flick bombs at the box-office.
That place this time Kanchivaram. Samba (NTR Jr.) is the violent protector of a colony of weavers in Kanchivaram. His specialties include smearing volcanic amounts of holy-ash on his forehead, beating up people randomly in other towns, dancing and not referring to his grandfather more than once in 5 seconds.
Seeing the man of the town dancing and pulping-up thugs, no girl would resist. And Genelia doesn’t certainly look the types to resist much, anyway. She’s head-over-heels, head-over-pointed-6-inch-heels in love with Samba. But Samba has other ideas. He’s involved with somebody who he cares so much about that he has no room for anyone else - himself. Even you would fall in love with yourself if people are whistling hysterically whenever you break into a song.
The songs in this half are particularly exhilarating. Lawrence is back. So is NTR Jr. So are those unbelievable steps. So is the second half.
The second half is a typical Seema flick. Just like the first half. So the second half is just like the first half, but not exactly like the first half, but just like a Seema flick, which brings us back to square one. Ummm… both the halves are basically like Samba because this movie is Samba, remember? Anything to look away from the tattered and torn story.
We find out that Samba was living away from the Seema because the police had banned him for too much violence. Same for Prakash Raj. This comes as a surprise because one would think he’d been banned for overacting.
Anyway, after returning to Seema, Prakash and Samba start where they had left. This time though, Prakash is left to RIP (Rest In Pieces). Prakash had mercilessly hacked and chopped Samba’s family. But Samba doesn’t do that. He mercifully hacks and chops Prakash.
The second half is a real drag, full of emotional fluff that slack-jawed yokels would thoroughly enjoy. Others can watch the intensity of the cup-holder. Bhoomika is totally wasted in this half. In the movie, actually.
VV Vinayak has tried working off the book in this one by infusing a message. If Tagore was about corruption, this is about education. Samba and his dad learn a bitter lesson when Samba’s mom dies because he cannot read-out the doctor’s number from the directory. But unlike in Tagore, the message in this one looks like a mamby-pamby candy wrapper.
NTR Jr. has given a good performance. But the stunt coordinator, the cameraman, Venu Madhav, Jeeva and the choreographer are the real heroes. In all, Samba’s a Seema flick made for a common jock to iron out.