‘MUSIC SCHOOL’ REVIEW | 12 May, 2023

Yamini Films and AP International’s Music School is the story of a school drama teacher and a music teacher, both of who are struggling to impress upon parents of young students, of the importance of extra-curricular activities like drama and music, for the all-round development of children’s personalities. Manoj Sir (Sharman Joshi) is a dramatics teacher in a school. Mary D’Cruz (Shriya Saran) joins as the new music teacher. How they both succeed in convincing the parents about the need to let their children participate in extra-curricular activities forms the crux of the drama.

Paparao Biyyala has written such a childish story about the significance of dramatics and music in a child’s growth that it almost appears as if kids who don’t take part in dramatics or don’t join music classes are dull. To say that Paparao Biyyala’s screenplay is terribly kiddish would not be wrong. If the opposition of some parents is half-hearted, the reasons why students should participate are even more so. What’s more, the music and ultimate performances of the students in the school function are both so weak that the audience might leave the cinema hall with the feeling that drama and music are indeed a waste of time! So thoughtlessly has the screenplay been scribbled that even the excitement of a performance is missing if only because there are no competitors! The change of heart of the obstinate parents is rather sudden and, if one might say so, unbelievable. Equally childish is the track of Samyuktha (Gracy Goswami) and Rinchen Thapa (Ozu Barua) eloping in Goa. The entire track, including the phone calls from Samyuktha’s police commissioner-father, is written so childishly that its impact is zero. Imagine, Samyuktha’s grandmother, back home in Hyderabad, is happy to know that the musical drama will, in fact, be performed; she is not even bothered to know any details about the elopement! The dance and drama practice sessions are silly — and that’s putting it mildly. Equally silly is the track of one bright student losing it when he is not allowed by his overbearing mother to go to Goa. The track of Mary D’Cruz teacher’s mother (Suhasini Mulay) talking about her elopement with the father (Benjamin Gilani) despite being from different communities, leaves a bad taste in the mouth if only because Samyuktha is a non-adult and also because of what the mother tells about defying her parents. The track of Mary and Albert (Shaan) is so under-developed that the audience  can’t even understand what went wrong between them. All in all, the screenplay is so terribly flawed that Biyyala seems to have written the script without knowing the basics of writing. Even the dialogues (by Shivani Tibrewala and Vinay Varma) are terribly dull.

Sharman Joshi does an average job as Manoj Sir. For the most part, it looks like even he was wondering what he was doing in the film. His dances are an eyesore. Shriya Saran looks pretty and dances well. Her acting is ordinary. Shaan suffers on account of weak characterisation and equally weak scripting. He is okay as Albert. Gracy Goswami looks pretty and does fairly well as Samyuktha. Rinchen Thapa is ordinary as Ozu Barua. Prakash Raj fails to impress as the police commissioner-father of Samyuktha. Suhasini Mulay and Benjamin Gilani provide routine support as Mary’s parents in Goa. Bugs Bhargava looks and acts like a clown rather than the school principal. Leela Samson is okay as Samyuktha’s grandmother. Mona Ambegaonkar does not impress as Rama Naidu. Srikanth Iyengar is dull as Hari Gopal. Vinay Varma is alright as Kulkarni. Phani Eggone lends ordinary support as Naidu. Vaquar Shaikh is so-so as Garry. Karthikeya Chowdary Gadde is dull as Vijay Naidu. Vivan Jain Munoth is average as Ram Gopal. Olivia Charan hardly makes her presence felt as Radhika Kulkarni. G. Rohan Roy is so-so as Bala Gopal. Aadhya Panditharadhyulu passes muster as Rekha Rao. Siddiksha (as Fathima) is ordinary. Kushee Soni is okay as Myra. Others lend dull support.

Paparao Biyyala’s direction is immature. Ilaiyaraaja’s music is weak. Lyrics (Dr. Sagar, Shivani Tibrewala and Raman Raghuvanshi) are ordinary. Song picturisations (by Adam Murray, Chinni Prakash and Raju Sundaram) are weak. Background music (Ilaiyaraaja) is dull. Kiran Deohans’ cinematography is probably about the only good thing in the film. Rajeev Nair’s art direction is basic. Manan Sagar’s editing is average.

On the whole, Music School will meet with a disastrous fate at the box-office because it is a half-baked effort.

Released on 12-5-’23 at Metro Inox (daily 1 show) and other cinemas of Bombay thru PVR Pictures Ltd. Publicity & opening: poor. …….Also released all over.