Movie Review : MAD


2 Hr 7 Mins   |   Youth   |   06-10-2023

Cast - Narne Nithin, Sangeeth Shobhan, Ram Nithin, Sri Gouri, Ananathika, Gopikaa, Raghu Babu, Racha Ravi and others

Director - Kalyan Shankar

Producer - Suryadevara Naga Vamsi, Sai Soujanya

Banner - Sithara Entertainments, Fortune Four Cinemas

Music - Bheems Ceciroleo

Campus comedies have a special place in the hearts of youths. It’s been a while since Tollywood witnessed such a pure campus film laced with humour. Attempting this, Naga Vamsi-presented MAD arrives with a lot of promising content. The trailer has set high expectations, and the filmmakers exude confidence in the film’s content. The burning question: Will MAD match up to the immense anticipation surrounding it? Let’s delve in and find out.


Manoj (Ram Nithin), Ashok (Narne Nithin) and Damodar (Sangeeth Shobhan) are the students of Regional Institute of Engineering who become best friends. They meet with a virus called Love in their life. Manoj loves Shruti (Gouri Priya), Ashok loves Jennie (Anantika) and Damodar is head over heels with a girl Vennela (whose face is not known). How the trio find their true love and what are the experiences they go through at college forms the crux of the story.


Sangeeth Shobhan shines in the role of Damodar, also known as DD, stealing the spotlight with his infectious charisma. Ram Nithin takes on the character of the flirtatious Manoj, infusing the film with his playful charm. Narne Nithin, portraying the character of orphan Ashok, delivers a poignant performance that resonates with the audience. Vishnu Oi, playing the role of Laddu, aka Ganesh, leaves the theater in uproarious laughter with his side-splitting comedy.

Gouri Priya, Ananthika, and Gopikaa Udyan deliver subtle performances that add depth to the film’s cast. Raghu Babu, in his role as the college principal, meets the expectations and delivers a solid performance. Muralidhar Goud, as Laddu’s father, provides a hilarious touch to the film.

The entire ensemble of boys in the college and hostel impresses with their collective efforts, contributing to the film’s overall success. MAD boasts a cast with noteworthy performances, and the depiction of the strong bonds among the boys in the hostel is portrayed convincingly.


Director Kalyan Shankar opts for a campus comedy with a thin story centered around three college friends navigating the intricacies of love. However, the film’s primary focus lies on the humor, pushing the story to the backseat. Even the romantic subplots fail to muster much conviction. Nevertheless, the rib-tickling humor shines brightly, overshadowing these shortcomings.

Unfortunately, the songs in the film prove to be a major disappointment, with Bheems struggling to create musical magic. On a positive note, the cinematography stands out, and Navin Nooli’s editing is a definite asset. The film’s brisk pacing contributes to its overall appeal. Technically, MAD is a well-crafted production with few, if any, flaws to be found. It could have benefited greatly from stronger musical numbers, but this minor drawback does little to diminish its overall quality.

Thumbs Up
MAD Comedy
Damodar & Laddu’s Roles
Pre-Climax Twist

Thumbs Down
Pretty Thin Story
Songs & Love Stories


Set in an engineering college, MAD revolves around Manoj, Ashok and Damodar. Kalyan Shankar weaves a story around these characters and their love. The director did not waste much time in setting up the campus atmosphere and the introduction of characters. The characters are aptly presented, probably inspired from real-life students. This sets up the tone and mood. The story begins when a senior student Laddu (Vishnu Oi) convinces a newcomer to stayback and in the process, he narrates the story of their batch. The take-off is smooth and good.

And the story has all the typical elements in a college – ragging, canteen fights, exams, freshers day, farewell day, romance and friendship. It is all chaotic and fun. There are several over-the-top comedy scenes. These work mostly. Some of them seem to be inspired from previous films. Yet these are passable. These are time-pass scenes and they do the job.

The episode of a baseball match fighting for dominance over the canteen is part of this. The first half largely banks upon the hostel comedy. Towards the interval, the conflict in the story is revealed. It is a typical campus comedy playing it to the galleries. There is pure madness and crowd-cheering moments.

The film suffers post interval scenes initially. But it bounces back in no time. The proceedings make enjoyable soon. The pre-climax twist is guessable. However, there is more to it. It finishes on fine note. Campus-backdrop films like Happy Days earned a cult tag. It is not quite easy to cater in this genre. The challenge is to not repeat or rehash the college scenes of any of the previous films. Here MAD manages to make its mark. No doubt, there is nostalgia here and there, but its strength is in the comedy and it hits the right chords.

There are enough shortcomings. MAD has weak love stories that are confined to subplots. Unfortunately, the love stories introduced at the interval point fail to develop dramatically, ultimately leading to predictable and humorous conclusions. The songs are not engaging, unlike Jathi Ratnalu. The story is wafer-thin and adding to this, the predictability puts off the narrative. While Damodar and Manoj’s characters are written well, Ashok’s role isn’t fully evolved.

MAD is a roller-coaster ride filled with laughter, subtle emotion and a decent twist towards the end. It is beautifully written and well-narrated and tailor-made for youths and college goers. It caters to its target audience, offering a steady stream of laughs, with a few characters standing out as the true comedic stars. The film will surely take one a trip down the memory lane and reminds us of college and hostel days. Finally, MAD is for limited section of audiences like youth, particularly Engineering Students.

Verdict: Enjoyable MADdness!

Rating: 2.75/5