Amidst of big releases like ‘Kong: Skull Island’ & ‘Badrinath Ki Dulhania’, ‘Nagaram’ hits the screens here in India. But would it survive the competition? Let’s find out.
Coming from a production house that delivered ‘Mayuri’ to us last year, this film released with no hype and probably very less marketing as well. Starring Sundeep Kishan, Regina Cassandra and Shri in lead roles with Charle and Ramdoss playing some key roles.
Diving into the plot, the complete movie takes place within a span of 36 hours in Chennai where one incident leads to other and that again causes some other thing to happen, similar to the butterfly effect or technically a hyperlink, the film finally converges at a point and leaving itself for an open interpretation. Wasting no time, the director simply throws at us some clinical information through the 4 lead characters, who are the heart of this film, wrapping up the 2-3 minute excellent opening sequence and instantly grabbing our attention for what would follow next. The pace with which it starts, the script does not slow at any point barring only two instances, one in the middle of first half and the other in the second half. In the first half, the pace seem to shudder a bit as it takes time to build up, post the intro. As we go with the flow, we are revealed to how messed up things get. Many might find the first half to be boring or confusing but I’d say it is completely normal in such genre films for they are written in such a way that all characters involving in the plot are made to come onto a same page and then take a step forward which ends up being the finale for the film. This flick here follows suite. If you get through the first half, not asking too many questions and just watching what opens up on the canvas, then you are up for one hell of a ride in the following half. Many films successfully get their patrons to this point but they end up screwing the second half. And exactly on this point is where ‘Nagaram’ hits it out of the park. Fabulous script writing, all credits to the director Lokesh Kanagarajan.
I’m not going to reveal much about the characters that get involved in this hyperlink drama for it would be a spoiler, all thanks to the writer for making up some complex plot. Sundeep Kishan plays a street smart romeo chasing his love interest played by Regina Cassandra. It so happens that a graduate from Nellore, played by Shri, comes to Chennai to join as an IT professional in a company where Regina works. On the other hand, we have Charle playing a family man who comes to Chennai to join as a cab driver and Ramdoss, who plays a naive and not so educated person who aspires to become a gangster. The characters themselves are quite intriguing, but once you finish with the film, you will be flabbergasted.
Sundeep is really good as this carefree guy. He was under the skin of this character. Happy to see him play such a character after what he has done in ‘Prasthanam’. Regina did a fine job. Shri was very good as an aspiring IT professional. A job well done. Rest of the cast did their part well.
Technically the best thing about this film is the editing by Philomin. Sharp at all times. Excellent. The next best thing is the cinematography by Selvakumar. More than half runtime of the film takes place at night and the way he uses that element as his arsenal is flattering. Most of the time he uses only street lighting and at times uses artificial ones. Except for two instances where green screen was noticable, no where else could I find any VFX shots. Direction and screenplay are both top notch. This guy Lokesh, who according to the internet has worked under the likes of Maniratnam and Gautam Vasudev Menon, made his debut through this film and boy what a film did he make! He’s going to go places. Music scored by Javed Riaz is really good. The background score adds to the feel of the film, really well made. Dialogues penned by Shashank Vennelakanti were awesome. They seem simple at first but have a really deeper meaning if scrutinized. Gem of dialogues, teaching many life lessons in a span of two lines. For me, the movie defining dialogues were those delivered by Sundeep in the every end of the film. Goosebumps I say!
I really feel happy seeing how the Indian cinema is evolving. The new genres into which these young and talented directors are venturing into is so fascinating. As I was already exposed to such genres in Hollywood movies, I have an idea of how things work in such films. But majority of Indian audiences are new to such stuff and might take time to imbibe it into their movie watching routine, so it wouldn’t be much of a surprise if this movie does not fare well. But I really hope this movie gets the respect and viewership it deserves. The way in which he made the opening sequence, just in the likes of traditional ‘Star Wars’ fashion. The way in which things happen in a racy fashion all through all remind me of some kind of a Hollywood flick. Loved watching ‘Nagaram’. Hope you would like it as well.