Partially, Popcorn- Fun Love Story
What Is the Film About?
Prem (Vishwak Sen) is looking for love all through his life. It is not restricted to one person. His search continues as long as he finds someone who can give him the same love as his mother. The process continues with many hookups and breakups right from childhood.
The twist in the tale comes when Prem finds love in Raji. He pursues it, but it ends unexpectedly. Who is Raji? And how is it connected with Teera (Nivetha Pethuraj)? It is the crux of the story.
How Is Vishwak Sen’s Performance?
The role of Prem is tailor-made for Vishwak Sen. It fits him to the T, and we can’t imagine anyone else apart from him for the part. What works for him is the character’s quirky behaviour mixes with his real-life persona. Hyperactivity is an advantage that’s utilised a well.
Many entertaining scenes work out due to Vishwak Sen’s naturally loud act. While he does well in fun parts, he is also equally adept in slightly dramatic sequences. As a performer in commercial movies, Paagal is definitely a step up for Vishwak Sen. It should add to his growth, and better choices henceforth should further help his cause.
Naressh Kuppili directs Paagal. For his debut venture, he has come up with a fresh take on love. More than the story, it is the packaging, the screenplay, which matters here.
The core emotion for all the acts of hero is established in the opening of the film. While the take-off keeps one guessing where the story is headed, the introduction (with the mother angle) neatly sets it up for all the madness that follows.
The mother angle established at the start helps remove the obnoxious element that one might feel with repeated love attempts. It is clear that Prem is looking for something genuine and pure. When we have that in the back of our minds, the various antics and scenarios fall in place.
The focus of the first half, however, is on three different love tracks. Care is taken to make each one look different and also packed with entertainment. The first one is shortest, and they (the love tracks) increases progressively, with the third one taking the entire second half.
In the screenplay, one gets the feeling of episodic nature, but Vishwak Sen holds it all together. The silly and weird reasons for break up are neatly blended as part of the fun. He helps in not letting them look like different chapters entirely.
The twist in the tale is the Murali Sharma tracks. It leads to an exciting interval bang and is sure to make one curious for the second half.
Unfortunately, the second half lacks the meat. Only parts of it carry the same momentum of the first half and generate the fun and entertainment vibe. The proceedings, now resting on single love track and ‘true love’, feel dragged. If the intention was to be more serious and mature concerning the ‘love’, the output falters in writing.
The mixing of the interval block with the love story that proceeds in the second half is unconvincing and predictable at the same. It is a fault at the writing level, although we see the effort to make it work. The strains are visible through the narrative via the dragging.
By the time we reach the climax, the quirkiness is long gone. The routine revenge angle is like a killer blow to all the freshness. When we know exactly what has happened, the whole thing looks very ordinary and like a cop-out.
Overall, Paagal is a freshly packed youthful romantic entertainer. The fun in the first half, and slick mounting, along with Vishwak Sen, makes Paagal look like a decent watch. The second half plays the spoilsports here with its unconvincing nature. What we end up with eventually is a routine fare that is passable at best.
Nivetha Pethuraj and Others?
Three heroines, Megha Lekha, Simran Chowdhary and Nivetha Pethuraj, are part of the narrative. Among them, Nivetha Pethuraj’s is the main one, and she does well. It is not just a glamorous part for her and requires some dramatic skills, which she does easily. It is not big, but considering a narrative dominated by the hero, it stands out. Megha Lekha and Simran Chowdhary are decent in their limited appearances.
The ever reliable Murali Sharma is again given a pivotal role. He doesn’t disappoint, as usual, and adds to the fun. Rahul Ramakrishna’s comedy track is integrated well into the main narrative. It works out in the first half. The rest of the actors are alright in their bits and pieces roles.
Music and Other Departments?
Technically the film is slick and carries a colourful vibe throughout. The music by Radhan and the background score by James Leon are in sync and enhance the film’s overall appeal. The cinematography by Manikandan is lovely. The visuals add to the peppy and hip feeling. The editing is fine. Some trimming in the second half could have been better. The writing is a mixed bag. The entertainment works in the first half, but the drama is flat, routine and unconvincing.
Music & BGM
Drag In The Second Half
Unconvincing Writing In Key Portions
Cop Out With The Twist In The Tale
The second half, especially the last half an hour, needs a revamp concerning the writing. The story takes a routine turn with the revenge angle. It could have been avoided.
Did I Enjoy It?
Yes, In Parts
Will You Recommend It?
Yes, But With Huge Reservations
Paagal Movie Review by Siddartha
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