Critic’s Rating : 2.5 / 5
My Dear Bootham Movie Review : Prabhudeva, Ashwath save this kids’ fantasy
Both in terms of writing and visuals, the aesthetics of My Dear Bootham is no different from the children’s show Jee Boom Baa, which used to air on TV in the early 2000s. The writing is all surficial, opting for an over-the-top tone, which only gets more evident with the tacky visuals. The visual effects resemble that of a Rama Narayanan film. The makers clearly want to deliver a children’s film, but then, they also seem to have decided that it’d be enough to appeal to only their target audience. So, adults will find antics like Prabhudeva imitating cartoon characters and appearing alongside Tom and Jerry, too childish, which kids, especially those under 10, might find the fil. amusing.
The sad part is that there are some themes that could have helped connect the film to adults as well – how both the genie and the boy turn out to be proxy father and son to each other, the message about not running away from one’s problems (the saving grace is a smart reference to Saraswathi Sabatham), and letting your kids to grow rather than being over-protective – but these are woven into the script without much nuance and are delivered in an in-your-face manner. The awkwardly written mother-son relationship is also an issue.
If the film works to the extent it does, it is mainly due to the two leads. Prabhudeva, who has often shown a flair for comedy, tries to elevate the material by giving his all, while Ashwath scores in the emotional moments, especially his monologue in the climax. It is the performances of these two actors that manage to somewhat overlook the flat filmmaking and the melodramatic treatment.