Donga Movie Review

2.75/5
2 Hrs 29 M | Action | 2019-12-21
CAST

Karthi, Jyothika, Satya Raj, Nikhila Vimal, Anson Paul, Sowcar Janaki, Seetha and Others

Director - Jeethu Joseph
Producer - Viacom 18, Suraj Sadanah
Banner - Viacom 18, Parallel Minds
Music - Govimd Vasantha

Karthi teaming up with Jeethu Joseph, the director of original Drishyam along with Jyothika made Donga an interesting movie to watch out for. Did it live up to the promise?

What's It About?

Vicky (Karthi), a con artist comes to a family impersonating their missing son Sharwa. He plans to run away with whatever he gets his hands on. But there is a bigger conspiracy happening around him and he becomes their target. Now Vicky has to find if he is playing the game or is he getting played.

Performances:

Karthi has once again slipped into the character and made it believable. He is an effortless actor who can pull off anything at ease. Jyothika is fine as someone who is going through a lot of pain. Satya Raj is superb as the politician with a hidden motive. Nikhila Vimal is okay in a limited role. Anson Paul fits in the role of a sincere cop.

Technical Aspects:

Jeethu Joseph is good at making mystery thrillers with family backdrop. Donga also is a film that falls into his zone. He maintained the mystery element by throwing in twists at frequent intervals and managed to keep the audience invested in the film. He is not at his best, but pulls this off, almost!

Songs come as a hindrance to the flow of the story and none of them are appealing. Background score is excellent and Cinematography is one of the major highlights. Production values are decent.

Highlights:
Lead actors
Background Score
Mystery Element

Drawbacks:
Songs
Uneven pacing
Misleading scenes

Analysis:
Jeethu Joseph has a special set of skills in dealing with family thrillers like Drishyam. There is heavy influence of foreign cinema on his work and not many could adapt those ideas to suit our tastes and nativity. Donga starts off very normally with a sister waiting for her missing brother who left their home fifteen years ago. A con man comes to their house claiming to be their missing son and the father says he is hundred percent convinced that he is his son. Even the DNA reports are positive, but his childhood friend, who is now a police suspects him to be a fraud. Then how did the DNA match?

Jeethu Joseph throws twist after twist and places the audience in place of Karthi. We get to know everything only when Karthi gets to know who's running the show. A couple of twists take you by surprise and the suspense intensifies. However, there is not enough tension in the plot like Drishyam. We are not on the edge of the seat at any time nor we root for any characters. The director failed to establish an emotional bonding or show some sympathy towards the principle characters. His focus was solely on unraveling the story without giving away the final twist. Screenplay gets lethargic at times in spite of the suspense being intact.

There is lot of action and other deviations before we get to know the actual story. Production design and slick technical values keep us engrossed in the story, but there something a miss. The film would have turned out something exceptional had the director focused on slick storytelling and filled it with connectable emotions. He has intentionally misled audience just for the sake of maintaining suspense. Audience will feel cheated when they get to know the actual story. Donga has its share of shortcomings, nevertheless, it is an engrossing experience that will keep us guessing until the end. You may watch it if you are game for mystery thrillers.

Verdict: Fairly Engaging!