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Movie Review : Sarpatta Parambarai
Cast: Arya, Dushara Vijayan, Pasupathy, Kalaiyarasan, John Kokken, Santhosh Prathap, John Vijay, Anupama Kumar, Shabeer Kallarakkal, Gm Sundar and others.
Music: Santosh Narayanan
Cinematography: Murali G
Producer: Shanmugam Dhakshanraj
Writer & Director: Pa. Ranjith
Director Pa. Ranjith who became familiar with the entire South Indian audience after directing superstar Rajnikanth two times. He made 'Kabali' and 'Kaala' with Rajni which helped him in creating a name for himself. He teamed up with Tamil hero Arya for a boxing drama titled 'Sarpatta Parambarai' which is released directly on Amazon Prime Video. Let us dive into the review to find more about this flick.
Set in the backdrop of the 70s, the culture of boxing is quite prevalent in the Madras region. A boxing group named 'Sarpatta' is in search of the right boxer who will help them in regaining their lost glory. The gang's head Rangayya (Pasupathi) who is a former boxer himself takes up with the challenge of opposition gang member Vetapuli (John Kokken). He selects Ramudu instead of his son for the challenge. But Ramudu decides to turn against them insults Rangayya. Looking at this, Samara (Arya) who admires Rangayya takes up the challenge on himself. He defeats Ramudu and gets ready to fight Vetapuli. Preparations begin for this boxing match on a grand note and what happens in the game and how their lives change after this bout forms the rest of the story.
The boxing dramas in India usually follow a certain pattern. We get to see her as a regular guy but he turned into a boxer at a crucial moment and the underdog story of a nobody winning over the best in business will be showcased. This is the basic pattern for most of the sports films in our country and 'Sarpatta Parambarai' too follows a similar path. But what sets in apart it is the 70s background, the authentic touch and terrific performances. But the necessary emotions which we associate with a sports drama went missing in this movie. There are a lot of ups and downs in the narration and the snail-paced narration plays the spoilsport. Also, there are a lot of unnecessary scenes and lack of logic at times makes you feel distant from the film and the heavy Tamil culture too doesn't make things easy for the Telugu viewers.
'Sarpatta Parambarai' starts off on a pretty interesting note. Directed Pa. Ranjith dived straight into the story and established the villain's character thereby introducing us to what the hero is going to face. Hero is introduced as a regular guy and people get curious to know how he becomes a boxer and defeats the villain. The emotional thread between hero and his mother who lost her husband due to boxing is very well written. The team never tried to explain how the protagonist trained himself as he steps into the ring for the first time and defeats the strongest of the 'Sarpatta' gang immediately. Since we know how much hard work goes into boxing, it appears a bit out of reality. But director Pa. Ranjith was successful in writing some brilliant scenes. His boxing sequence with Darling Rose is very entertaining and engaging. It is one of the biggest highlights for this film and with a lot of drama built up prior to the main match, the audience expect something huge.
But things take a wrong turn after the fight with Vetapuli gets stopped under strange circumstances. The film goes through a downward spiral after that and how the hero's life turns upside down bore the audience to the core. 'Sarpatta Parambarai' goes off track and a lot of unnecessary scenes with many characters come and go which tests the patience of the audience. The tightness which was there in the first half went completely missing in the second half. Many boxing films which came out till date have a strong reason for the hero's return to the ring and they were filmed in a very emotional way which is not the case with Arya's film. This doesn't connect the audience with the hero's strenuous workouts that take place onscreen. A lot of characters were present in the movie but none of them stand out.
Apart from the boxing drama, political issues like Emergency period in seventies and Tamil politics were discussed and appear a bit forced. With many things going wrong in the second half, the climax fight with Vetapuli too turns pale and the audience wait for the film to finally end. The film can be shortened by at least 30 minutes. Though a decent first half raise you expectation, the jarring second half lets you down completely making 'Sarpatta Parambari' an okay watch
The hard work of any hero who features in a sports drama deserves a lot of appreciation. Arya should be commended for learning boxing, getting the mannerisms spot on, attaining the perfect athlete look and bring out a stellar performance on top of everything. He did a perfect job and tried to elevate the proceedings to the best of his capabilities.
After him, Pasupathi impresses with his matured acting. Heroine Dushara suited the role perfectly and John Kokken who played the main villain's role was spot on. John Vijay touches the audience in the role of hero's father. There are a lot of artists in the film and they did their part well
Intense films like these need the backing of good technicians and 'Sarpatta Parambarai' is blessed in that aspect. Music by Santosh Narayanan is terrific and his signature background scores helped the film a lot. The same cannot be said about the songs as they have a huge Tamil flavour. Cinematography by Murali G is one of the biggest assets of this film and art director was brilliant. He brought the seventies atmosphere perfectly and helped the narration a lot. The production values are absolutely fantastic.
Coming to director Pa. Ranjith, he proved his mettle in some scenes and did a decent job in the first half. But the snail-paced narration and a lot of unnecessary elements in the second half damaged the film's prospects. He selected a different backdrop for a boxing drama but did not make the best use of it. Had he taken more care in tightening the screenplay in the latter half, things would have been different for 'Sarpatta Parambarai'.
Verdict: Overstretched Boxing Drama Without A Knockout Punch!
Disclaimer : This Review is An Opinion of One Person. Please Do Not Judge The Movie Based On This Review And Watch Movie in OTT