2h 35m ‘UA’ Certified.
What Is the Film About?
Pallavi (Nivetha Thomas), Divya (Ananya) and Zareena (Anjali) are three friends. One night when they take a cab home, Pallavi has a fight with a cab driver. One thing leads to another, which results in dire, life-threatening consequences. It involves the son of an MP.
The girls are pushed to a corner and left with no hope of survival. It is then that they hear about the reclusive lawyer Satyadev (Pawan Kalyan). Only he can save them, but he has quit the practice and is an alcoholic. How Satyadev turns a new leaf in his life and takes up the girls’ case is what the movie is all about
How Is Pawan Kalyan’s Performance?
The original of Vakeel Saab is a narrative based courtroom drama that purely sticks to the content. The remake has additional commercial elements which are added for Pawan Kalyan’s sake. Pawan Kalyan is okay in them. He isn’t presented well and isn’t at his best look wise, too. The impact, therefore, is missing. Due to his look and poorly written sequences, nothing actually works in his favour, especially in the flashback portions.
It is the second half where Pawan Kalyan shines. The significant relief is the look, foremost, though. After a long gap, we see the ‘star’ taking the backseat or reigning in his ‘star’ quality to be in character and take the narrative forward. It works well in the movie. The lady police officer scene’s cross-examination scene is a fine example of what happens when the ‘actor’ takes over. Such moments are less, anyways, in Vakeel Saab, so we don’t get much to talk about that aspect. Pawan Kalyan is fine; otherwise.
Direction by Venu Sriram?
Venu Sriram of Oh My Friend and Middle Class Abbayi fame directs Vakeel Saab. It is the remake of the Bollywood multiplex movie Pink, which also had a Tamil remake Nerkonda Paarvai. The bottom line here is that the core content is strong. It has a sensitive issue and has worked with the audience. All one has to do is execute it properly without ruining the essence.
Unfortunately, Vakeel Saab takes the very approach that one least expects. It is a classic case of how to ruin perfectly likeable content with needless commercial diversions. The Telugu version has tinkered with the narrative in the first half, big time, and to an unwanted result. It is here that it differs from Pink and Nerkonda Paarvai.
Vakeel Saab opens superbly. The first twenty minutes or so is well acted and shot. It serves as the perfect set up for the ‘star’ to be at the centre stage. The whole portion is like an excellently crafted lead scene to bring the elevation to the hero.
Sadly, the ‘elevation’ aka the ‘commercial elements’ fall flat. After the hero is introduced as a non-practising lawyer, it straight away jumps into a flashback. It brings the ‘tinkering’ we mentioned above. It is a commercial block fit into the narrative keeping the Powerstar in mind. It would have been alright if it is merely the ‘star quotient, but we get a mix of politics here as well.
Nothing works in the flashback portion. Pawan Kalyan looks aren’t good (two looks in the first half), the writing is bland, and the execution is lacklustre as if going through the motions. One waits for the whole ordeal to get over as soon as possible, but it seems never-ending. A couple of songs being part of the narrative add to the impact.
After the flashback is over, we are back to the main narrative involving the girls that the story is brought back to life again. The ‘bearded look’ gives so much relief, and we understand why it’s so important. The subsequent interval block is decent.
The entire second half is a courtroom drama. After the first half, it comes as a massive improvement. The entry of Prakash Raj into the scheme of things lightens up the proceedings. Pawan Kalyan and Prakash Raj’s duel are the movie’s lifeline, along with the sensitive issue involving the girls.
Pawan Kalyan looks his best with the light stubble. He also is very interested in the proceedings, and the impact is felt narratively. However, the problem of commercial elements surfaces again. The simple structure involving tight knitted drama is broken to add fights and elevation to the star. It creates an uneven narrative diluting not only the core theme but also the good moments.
Overall, Vakeel Saab is a classic case of a remake being ruined through forceful commercial additions. Changing things to suit the nativity is fine, but adding blocks and bits and pieces to elevate a star at the story’s cost is never right. Still, Vakeel Saab offers some engaging moments to those who haven’t seen the original. To those who have, the remake offers no improvement.
Anjali, Nivetha, Ananya and Others?
The three ladies, Anjali, Nivetha Thomas, and Ananya, are well cast and suit the roles perfectly. Among the three, Anjali and Nivetha have a couple of emotional moments. They do it adequately.
Shruti Haasan appears in flashback portions. It is easily the most forgetful part of her career. If one wondered why she wasn’t seen anywhere related to movie’s promotions, one gets an idea now.
Prakash Raj is a welcome addition. Anyone in his place wouldn’t have given a similar impression. It is because of his history with Pawan Kalyan. When both face each other and go against one another, powerful energy holds the audience’s attention. It is what works for Vakeel Saab and why only Prakash Raj and no one else would have been suitable for the part, not that he has come with some extraordinary act here. The rest of the actors have very little to do and aren’t that recognizable.
Music and Other Departments?
Music director S Thaman has put his best foot forward for Vakeel Saab. His impact is felt instantaneously when the movie begins. It is superb, if not extraordinary. He elevates the proceedings through his background score where ever possible. The cinematography by PS Vinod is decent. It could have been better during the flashback sequences, though. The editing is not up to the mark in many scenes. The writing is very poor during the flashback portions and decent, in parts, in the courtroom drama scenes. On the whole, It is below par.
Pawan Kalyan vs Prakash Raj Duel
Three Girls Performance
Flashback in The First Half
Unnecessary Commercial Elements
Not so gripping court room scenes
The idea of the flashback is alright. If it was executed with less political ideology fitted in and introduced points related to the ‘core story’ and drama, the whole thing would have worked out wonderfully.
Did I Enjoy It?
Yes, In Parts
Will You Recommend It?
Yes, But With Reservations
Vakeel Saab Movie Review by Siddartha
— The court pronounces the judgement in Pallavi and her friends case. The legal drama comes to an end. Visit back (refresh the page) for a detailed review and rating soon.
— Vakeel Saab, the court room drama is nearing the verdict point.
— Pallavi (Nivetha Thomas) did well in emotional scene in the court as a helpless women even though it is a short one.
— The arguments begin between Nanda (Prakash Raj) and Satyadev (PSPK).
— Vakeel second half started. PSPK walking into the court room scene is good backed by Thaman’s score.
— Vakeel Saab all set to take up the case. Interval.
— The reason behind lawyer Satya Dev becoming drunkard is revealed. Now the story comes back to the serious issue girls facing.
— Lawyer Vakeel Saab wants nothing but the justice for the common man. He is now getting famous for his good deeds.
— Girls want Vakeel (PK) to take up their case. It’s time for Satya Dev (PK) flashback.
— A very simple yet powerful entry for PSPK with a brief fight scene.
— Three girls Pallavi (Nivetha Thomas), Ananya and Anjali run into a trouble.
— Show takes off with a nice melody ‘Maguva Maguva’.
– Vakeel Saab show started, streaming partner Amazon Prime Video. Thaman is on the job right from the title cards.
Vakeel Saab U.S. Premiere live updates will begin from 1.30 AM IST. Refresh or visit Mirchi9.com for live updates and Premiere report.
Preview: Vakeel Saab
Vakeel Saab is right here for us to watch the power star after a gap of three years and needless to say that it’s a big day for Pawan Kalyan’s fans and like a festival for them. The entire movie is on the power star’s shoulders and it’s time to see how that translated on the screen.
Here Pawan Kalyan’s presence will greatly be appreciated because a serious subject like this with the underlying concept of the movie related to the consent of a woman will easily be registered because of the star power of the lead actor.
No doubt, it’s Pawan Kalyan‘s stamina as a star that would help the movie if the narrative was done well. That means the onus lies on the director of ‘Vakeel Saab’, Venu Sriram, on how much he tweaked the narrative to cater to the tastes of the Telugu audiences.
If the movie comes out with flying colours, he will walk away with the credit that he could use Pawan Kalyan’s stardom effectively and thus, even the music scored by S Thaman will play an important role to take the concept to the common audiences, successfully.
Pawan Kalyan seemed very genuine regarding the issue dealt with in the movie. The trailer and Pawan’s speech reiterated the same. Hoping big time, that ‘Pink’ adapted as ‘Vakeel Saab’ will reach far and wide in the Telugu States and start the debate on what ‘consent’ really means.
It’s time to see how our own Pawan Kalyan gave weight to the debate on the sensitive topic with a social message. So folks, stay tuned and meanwhile mirchi9 team will be back with an inclusive and genuine ‘Vakeel Saab‘ review. Stay with us.