For a movie that relies entirely on its newbie lead pair and a contemporary support cast, with no help whatsoever from experienced character actors (who are usually seen hanging around in these films, to resuscitate the proceedings), SMS does pretty well for itself. And that is an impressive feat.
Siva Manasulo Sruthi is the kind of simple and simplistic romance that is aimed at the campus crowd, and that takes the box office more seriously than art. The Super Good Movies banner helps its cause, mounting the movie on a scale larger than it deserves.
Siva (Sudheer Babu), the "hero" of the movie, is anything but. And he's wooing his woman Sruthi (Regina) all wrong - not just because he's a courier delivery boy and she's a famous RJ. The two pull wool over each other's eyes in their very first chance encounter, and after that, it's all downhill, with one nasty prank after another.
Sruthi falls for him eventually, but he messes things up by continuing to lie to her, staging drunken brawls, and insulting her. However, since this is a film, there's hope, and a happy ending.
If you ignore the fact that Sruthi has no business being so much in love with Siva - since he seems to have no redeeming qualities, and he's mean to her - SMS is mostly light-hearted and cute. Occasionally annoyingly childish, SMS scores because it doesn't take itself too seriously.
While it has the potential to make you indifferent to it, what adds body to the otherwise wafer-thin storyline is the presence of some decent comedy with Chanti and Vennela Kishore. Playing Siva's best friend, Chanti adds sheer sparkle to several scenes that seem in danger of falling limp. The comedy is alternatively slapstick and smart, and the actors have good coming timing.
However, while SMS is ostensibly a love story, there's hardly any romance between Siva and Sruthi, except for the "they-bicker-because-they-are-in-love" kind of obvious vibe. The two are always fighting, and some of the squabbling is not even pleasant. And what's with this trend of calling women by swear words (the beeping doesn't help)? We hope this is just a temporary thing the Ghattamaneni family
has taken a fancy to.
Sudheer Babu looks like he could make it big if he were set upon it. He has a decent build, he can dance and look tough as well as soft, and more importantly, he's energetic as well as expressive. His voice draws him back, though. Regina is a pretty actress, and a spirited one, at that. She's a little over-expressive in some scenes, which may as well be the character's fault.
Chanti and Vennela Kishore are actually brilliant. Taagubothu Ramesh makes an entry towards the end, with the same thing that he does all the time. Rohini, who plays Siva's mother, deserves special mention for hamming it up so badly it's embarrassing to watch. The girl who plays Siva's younger sister is a good find, by the way.
The music is passable, but the choreography is good to watch.
Overall, SMS is the kind of movie that you won't mind stumbling into if you're bunking college. If you're older, though, you wouldn't care much.