June 18, 2012 Y. Sunita Chowdary
Do you want to know why this film has been named Maa Abbai Engineering Student? The moment never comes. The film has a run time of two hours and the hero Manoj (Naga Siddharth) doesn't have the courage to express love to the girl Mansa (Radhika) but there are umpteen songs wasted in imagination - one while spotting her, one after talking to her, then dreaming of her and before he gets into the fourth song, she is engaged and even invites him to the function.
A brave heart that he is, he goes on with his life as if nothing has ever happened and even makes friends with the girl's fiance Rahul (Bharat Bhushan). Worse, the three of them go for a holiday to Visakhapatnam. Seeing the hills in Vizag, Rahul who had returned from the US exults, that too in a strange manner as if he had never seen hills or a patch of green abroad.
There should be a conflicting point in the story and the director portrays the heroine's would-be father-in-law as being money-minded and is waiting to take the 60 lakh dowry home. On an occasion when the heroine is injured, the groom and the father flee and in the next scene we have Manoj and Manasa married and Manasa drawing a portrait of her expectant child.
Before all this drama the director offers us the character sketches of the lead pair with formulaic passion. Mansa shifts from a city college to a college in Rajahmundry and takes up on the onus of removing a garbage pile near a school. Manoj wants to impress her and overnight, along with his friends removes the pile and digs the place and turns it into a beautiful nursery. A minister is ready to inaugurate it.
The characters and plot lack a shred of credibility and the narration tests your patience, there is hardly any modicum of chemistry between the duo or the trio. Just to fill the gaps there are ridiculous sight-seeing trips and Janmashtami scenes. Uttej plays Sattireddy who drinks umpteen cups of chai in the college canteen and doesn't pay, Kondavalsa the owner keeps threatening him that if he doesn't cough up the money he will kill him, says, "Kanti choopu tho kadhu ra ninnu tea neella tho champestha."
Even if you tickle yourself, you wouldn't laugh at some of the jokes. Manoj is a Sai Kiran look-alike. The trio do not make any impact and they took look tired and bored, the performances from the other cast too is lethargic. Maa Abbai Engineering Student might have been Radha Kumari's last project, a note dedicating this to her has been shown in the prelude.