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Saroja Saroja

Saroja Movie Review

Saroja-Thriller in the dark
Behindwoods Movie Review Board
Movie review

Starring: S.P.B. Charan, Siva, Premji Amaran, Kajal Agarwal, Nikitha, Prakash Raj, Jayaram

Direction: Venkat Prabhu

Music: Yuvan Shankar Raja

Production: Amma Creations

Release Date : September 05, 2008

It’s the return of the victorious team of Chennai 6000028. All those who watched and loved the refreshingly youthful fun story would certainly have high expectations of Saroja. The onus is on Venkat Prabhu to prove that Chennai 600028 was not a freak hit. Billed as a first of its kind in Tamil cinema, Saroja tells the story of four ordinary men who end up in an extraordinary situation on a day that is perfectly normal to start with.
Ganesh Kumar, Ram Babu, Jagapathi Babu and Ajay Raj are the four protagonists of the story. The movie begins with four of them setting off in a car towards Hyderabad to catch a cricket-one-day-international. But what happens is more exciting than just a 50 over cricket match, perhaps something more exciting than they would have bargained for. Things start to go wrong when an untoward incident on the road threatens to spoil their trip. But the youngsters have spirits that will not be dampened and that is exactly what leads them to the centre of a conspiracy. Taking a deviation from the highway, they make their way through an isolated path hoping to rejoin the main road at a later point.

But events start taking unexpected turns by the moment. An accident, a few gunshots, a heart stopping incident, a few goons, a missed purse and a girl (Saroja) all alone in the middle of nowhere leave them bewildered. It is only slowly revealed that what they have seen are the moving parts of an immaculately planned conspiracy. As the threads are unraveled, henchmen, policemen, a high flying businessman and many others are at different ends of the conspiracy.
Basically planned as a thriller, we feel it would not be appropriate to reveal anything else about the movie as it would take the zing out of the experience of watching it. The prerequisite for any thriller is the pace in the script and Venkat Prabhu seems to have faltered a bit in this regard. Some scenes in the first half could have been shorter and crisper. However, he has done really well in all other departments. His evolution as a film maker is evident in the way most of the scenes have been picturised, the scale is definitely bigger this time round. There are places in the movie where one can clearly feel and see a Hollywood influence. The dialogues are youthful and well conceived. The high point of the movie is when the threads of the conspiracy are fully revealed, the audience will surely be taken by surprise, however intuitive they may be.
Talking about the cast, it is indeed pleasant to see much of the Chennai 28 cast back again on screen; the director shows his acumen here. All of them have done fairly well, but the one who scores highly is Premgi Amaren once again. He returns to his best after his debut, seemingly enjoying the experience of working under his elder brother; but there is a lingering doubt as to whether his comic capers in the midst of racy thriller will be liked by the audience. SPB Charan is the new addition. Apart from the Chennai 28 cast, the movie also has experienced hands in Prakash Raj and Jeyaram who add a touch of class to the proceedings. Debutant Vega, Nikitha and Kajal Aggarwal have done their parts well without delivering anything special.
Technically, Saroja is a movie that gives a lot of scope for the cinematographer, most of the story being at night, and has been used well. The background score too is befitting of a thriller. The songs have been tailor made for the youth and are bound to be enjoyed. But the movie on the whole belongs to the director who has taken a one line plot and maintained the element of suspense till the very end, a very challenging thing to do for a director in only his second movie. He has managed to cleverly craft the characters such that we don’t get the slightest inkling of what is afoot.

Saroja is certainly different from the run of the mill movies and the attempt should be appreciated. At the box office, the thriller tag and the deftly held suspense will prove to be its strength and the lack of pace (at places) and the elements of comedy (perhaps) may go against it. Venkat Prabhu proves that he is not a flash in the pan, the young director is here to stay.

Verdict – Watch it for the excitement

Dhaam Dhoom
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