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Sardar

Farhad Dalal
By-
Farhad Dalal
Rating
3.5 Star popcorn reviewss

Introduction

It is still a Tuesday and I thought of knocking off another film from my previous weekend list. With that I finished watching the new Tamil film Sardar which is now streaming on Aha Tamil. The film stars Karthi who is having a phenomenal year. But moreover, this Diwali theatrical release did meet with extremely positive reactions from the audience. While I did miss out on its theatrical run, I had my eyes sealed on its OTT release. And the film was finally out on a packed weekend that prompted me to finally get to it on a weekday. I was really intrigued by its poster that gave me an impression of the different looks of the protagonist. Now that I have finally finished watching Sardar, here are my two cents on it.

Story & Screenplay

Sardar follows the story of a spy who must stop illegal activities related to water that are prevalent in the country. Will he succeed? The story here is a typical mass masala entertainer but the good news is that it is done right! The screenplay standing at almost 165 minutes did mean that it was a daunting watch to begin with. But there were so many engaging elements in the screenplay that meant for an engaging viewing along with a little message at the end!

The drama here is surprisingly layered although not entirely unpredictable. You will get a sense of the beats of the screenplay. However, I did like the fact that the writer was always holding some cards up his sleeve. So you are introduced to the protagonist who is a cop and a badass one. Here I must say that some of the weakest moments in the screenplay are right at the top. While the world building is interesting, the romantic angle seemed unnecessary and totally out of place. To give you a perspective, if I were to remove the entire romantic angle that unfolds at the beginning of the drama, it would have had absolutely no impact on the screenplay. So atleast a song could have been saved up along with a few crucial minutes.

Soon, you are introduced to the conflict regarding a potential futuristic water crisis although the writers do well to hold some piece of information back. A parallel track featuring the now abandoned father of the protagonist unfolds who is termed as a traitor. These two plots finally meet but not before mayhem unfolds. There is a sense of urgency right throughout that makes the screenplay compelling. Now, here is the thing with mass masala entertainers – they lack logic and are far fetched. So if you would go searching for logic every now and then, you will end up not liking this drama. But if you forego the genre and start investing in the story, you will find the story engaging.

The drama is convoluted in many ways, but in a good way! There are flashbacks within flashbacks especially while establishing the “spy” feature in the screenplay. Even the emotional quotient did work fairly well. But at its core, this drama does have a shade of addressing a potent social issue. And I did like how that element was integrated in the screenplay. The events leading up to the final act are also quite exciting and entertaining. Now often the mass masala entertainers do stumble in the final act where most dramas just look to do the bare minimum. But here, the elaborate climax scenes is pretty good, nicely layered may I add and it did ensure that the film ended with a bang! Overall, the screenplay is entertaining, ticking all boxes of a commercial entertainer yet not compromising on the ‘Entertainment Quotient’.

Dialogues, Music & Direction

The dialogues are massy but still decently impactful. The music is good although the songs did stall the flow of the drama at so many places. The BGM is spectacular and it adds a lot of style and glitz to the proceedings. The cinematography and art design are pretty good as well. The action sequences are stylized and really good but one reason for them working well is the emotion attached to them. Director PS Mithran does manage to pull off a good masala entertainer by consistently keeping the drama engaging and more importantly entertaining!

Performances

The performances are really good here. Laila as Sameera does manage to impress despite a limited screen time. Raashi Khanna as Shalini is decent but her character does not get much scope. She may need to reflect on her choices and in turn select slightly more meaty roles. Rajisha Vijayan as Indhra is wonderful to watch and she does make her presence felt. Chunky Panday as Rathore is really good and he definitely has the right spunk to be a worthy antagonist. Karthi is the soul of the film in his dual roles. As Vijay he has a nice little charm to his character, excelling in a few emotional scenes. But he is ballistic as Sardar with almost the same intensity as his character in Kaithi. He makes sure that the proceedings are entertaining and enjoyable.

Conclusion

Sardar is an engaging spy thriller packaged as an enjoyable mass masala entertainer! Available on Aha Tamil.

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