Aadikeshava is a 2023 Indian Telugu-language action drama film directed by Srikanth N. Reddy in his directorial debut. The film stars Panja Vaisshnav Tej, Sreeleela and Joju George in the lead roles. The soundtrack and background score were composed by G.V. Prakash Kumar, while the cinematography and editing were handled by Dudley and Navin Nooli.
Aadikeshava was released on 24 November 2023 to generally negative reviews from critics and was a box-office bomb.
Balu, who lives with his adopted parents and works at a cosmetics company, learns about the death of his biological father Rayalaseema-based MLA Maha Kaleshwar Reddy, where he returns to Rayalaseema to save his sister Vajra and the ancestral temple from a mining mafia boss Chenga Reddy.
- Panja Vaisshnav Tej as Balu/Rudra Kaleshwar Reddy
- Sreeleela as Chitra, Balu’s love interest
- Joju George as Chenga Reddy
- Aparna Das as Vajra, Balu’s sister
- Jayaprakash as Balu’s adoptive father
- Radhika Sarathkumar as Balu’s adoptive mother
- Suman as Maha Kaleshwar Reddy, Balu/Rudra’s biological father
Aadikeshava was released on 24 November 2023. The film’s digital rights were bought by Netflix, and the satellite rights were bought by Star Maa.
Sangeetha Devi Dundoo of The Hindu found the film “unintentionally hilarious” and found it a relief that the film does not last very long. 123Telugu gave 2.5/5 stars and wrote “Aadikeshava is a mediocre action drama, introducing Panja Vaisshnav Tej in a new light. His comedy timing, performance in action scenes, Sreeleela’s glamour and the comedy scenes in the first half are the other positives, but the outdated storyline, over-the-top action scenes in the second half, and unnecessary scenes are the main drawbacks.”
NTV gave the film 2/5 stars and wrote “Aadikeshava is one movie that seems like makers had belief in an old adage, “Watch 10 films and write one. The movie feels so outdated that even 90’s films look contemporary in comparison to this film. The twists and turns, trying to replicate Boyapati Srinu and Trivikram Srinivas styles, doesn’t mix well.” Avad Mohammad of OTTPlay gave 2/5 stars and wrote “Aadikeshava is a very routine and outdated action drama that does not showcase anything novel. Barring a few romantic and comedy scenes featuring the lead pair, the action is so over the top that the masses will also find it difficult to sit through.”
Raghu Bandi of The Indian Express gave 1.5/5 stars and wrote “The subject and the writing in Aadikeshava by debutant Srikanth N Reddy have nothing original to offer and feel bland. There is no need to hurry to the theatres to catch this film as it might reach OTT soon.” Abhilasha Cherukuri of Cinema Express gave 1.5/5 stars and wrote “Aadikeshava still manages to remind one of how comforting tropes can be. It is only when the tropes are not spun well enough, the illusion of entertainment falls apart, only to find reality break and enter.”
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