A frustrated, desperate, angry and drunk young man is trying to reach his lover Lilly but is unable to do so. His friends try their best to control him but are unable to do so. Here begins the flashback journey of the young man - Chaitanya (Vijay Deverakonda), who is fondly called as Bobby by his friends and family! A leader of the Students Union, Bobby takes it upon himself to address all issues surrounding him, be it academic or social. He meets his neighbour's sister Aparna Devi (Rashmika Mandanna), who is called Lilly! After an initial courtship period, Bobby and Lilly fall in love but Bobby's attitude of resorting to violence for all issues, causes a rift between them. In an incident, the two part ways and when they meet after a gap of three years, many things have changed. Lilly has given up her passion - playing cricket and Bobby is now more mature and deals with issues calmly. However, an incident that happened within these three years, turns their lives upside down. What is it? What has happened to Lilly and Bobby? What will happen next? Watch Dear Comrade in the theatres for the answers...
It is not new for us to see Vijay Deverakonda as a college student or as an angry young man. The pairing with Rashmika Mandanna too is something that we have seen in Geetha Govindam. Well, if you ask us what else is new in this movie, we can think hard and say, maybe the premise but not much else. The first half slowly, actually very slowly, sets us up for what seems to be a huge clash between Bobby and a local MLA but the director seems to have forgotten about that somewhere along the way. To sum up the first half in 1 line, we can say - Bobby is an angry young man who fights, falls in love and fights some more! (Sounds familiar?) The second half moves at a better pace and though highly predictable, the intricate emotions involved and Rashmika's performance in particular, are very good. Rashmika's efforts to learn cricket, reflect on the screen where she portrays a bold and confident batsman. Shruti Ramachandran is good in her role as Jaya, Lilly's elder sister!
The bonding between two neighbourly families, the camaraderie between students, the lovely bond of friendship have all been wonderfully showcased in this movie. However, too much time has been taken to establish all of these and this results in a lengthy movie which finds it difficult to retain the audiences' attention. Bobby's character is right up Vijay Deverakonda's alley and he has just breezed through the part. Director Bharat Kamma seems to have taken extra effort to make almost every scene and every frame exude Vijay's mass and though it works for the most part, it sort of becomes a little too much at times. Rashmika is lively & aces the minute expressions and has given a very commendable performance.
The Tamil dialogues seem to be a big letdown and are rather flat with nothing special to invoke the viewers' interest. The director has chosen all the right ingredients - emotions, social message, perfect cast, good story but has not got the configuration right and misses the mark in the execution. Just Prabhakaran's music is one of the biggest highlights of this movie. The 'Pularaadha' song is highly soulful and the 'Gira Gira' number is very good too! The BGM stands out in a number of places and helps the movie big time. Sujith Sarang's cinematography is good and the visuals are very pleasing to the eye. The editor Sreejith Sarang should have been given the freedom to work more on his chops and reduce a good bit of the runtime.
Verdict: A pleasant journey that could have been short!