Gatham is a Telugu-language psychological thriller movie written and directed by Kiran Kondamadugula, and starring Bhargava Poludasu, Rakesh Galebhe, Poojitha Kuraparthi and Lakshmi Bharadwaj.
Gatham’s limited budget is probably the reason why the movie doesn’t really take off as you’d expect. The psychological thriller, albeit a bit cliched, does have a fair number of twists and turns which keep you at the edge of your seat. Actually, there are quite a number of them that keeps this otherwise unimpressive movie somewhat thrilling.
When Rishi loses his memory after an accident, he and his girlfriend Adithi decide to travel and meet his father. On the way, they take shelter at a stranger’s home after their car breaks down, and it is here that we get to know that there’s more to this tale than meets the eye.
Probably one of Gatham’s biggest positives is the fact that the audience and Rishi both get to know what’s going on as the story unfolds. Thus, we’re at the same place where our protagonist is – a clean slate. As I mentioned before, Gatham’s twists are aplenty and it’s these twists that keep the movie pushing forward. Although there are moments that the screenplay starts to drag a bit, it’s nothing major that you can’t ignore.
However, where Gatham really lacks is its dialogue and acting. The dialogues are pretty tacky and unimpressive, and the acting is just as atrocious. Although Rakesh Galebhe and Bhargava Poludasu are somewhat believable when it comes to expressing their characters’ feelings and emotions, everyone else is below average. Surprisingly, Galebhe sounds like Vijay Devarakonda, with a similar way of speaking and diction, and his character here is a reminder of what happens when no one teaches Arjun Reddy some manners. Poludasu, too, is very much believable as a desperate father looking out for his daughter.
The fact that Gatham was created on a shoe-string budget is very understandable by the sets. The entire movie mainly takes place in 2 or 3 sets and the cinematography is not good enough to make it feel real. I mean, there’s an odd blueish-white light at night whenever Arjun opens his cabin door, very reminisce of Raaz.
At one point, Arjun tells Rishi that his son is a womaniser and that if Adithi is infront of him, he wouldn’t be able to stop himself from f*cking her. He is, apparently, like that as if that’s a cute quirk to have. It’s dialogues like these that totally ruin the movie for me, because womanisers are promiscuous, sure, but they don’t force themselves on women – rapists do that.
I think you’d also feel a little slowed down by the sheer number of twists and turns that Gatham throws your way. Not all of them are quite well thought out, and sometimes it drags a lot.
Summing up: Gatham
Gatham’s few good twists and interesting narration are somewhat ruined by the atrocious acting and dialogue delivery. The movie’s twists are cliched, but still, mostly hold on to your interests. The latter half of the movie focuses more on flashbacks and weaves the entire story together – filling in the gaps. This is the area which might be a drag for a lot of people. However, keeping its budget in mind, the movie does a good job at thrilling its audiences.
The movie has a minimal number of characters and it feels pretty lonely and desolate. The background score and the camera work are simple, which helps in keeping the focus on the story at hand. However, thrillers rely heavily on their actors, and that’s where Gatham falls very short.
Gatham is streaming on Amazon Prime Video.
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