Pugazh Review: A Sensitive Film on Landgrab

Published: 20th March 2016 05:07 AM  |   Last Updated: 07th April 2016 11:00 AM   |  A+A-

Film: Pugazh | Director: Manimaran

Cast: Jai, Surabhi, Karunas, R J Balaji, Marimuthu

After his romantic road-thriller NH4, director Manimaran explores a social issue about open lands and playgrounds being usurped by unscrupulous politicians, which leave little space for children and youngsters of the locality to play. The film has a sensible and a focused screenplay, deft treatment and some fine performances by the lead actors.

For Jai, it’s a script that gives him the opportunity to reveal the more intense side of the performer in him. And the actor surprises you with his intuitive understanding of the character of Pugazh, who putting his life in jeopardy, takes on the powerful and the influential to get back what rightfully belonged to the community.

Pugazh.jpgPugazh often gets into trouble because he takes up the cause of the distressed and the oppressed. Like his supporting his buddy Venkat, when the latter was being harassed by those he had borrowed heavily from. The relationship between the friends is well brought out. And at a later stage when certain interested parties would try to create a misunderstanding between the friends, the director steers clear of cliches lending a realistic feel to those moments.

Cute are the romantic interludes between Pugazh and Bhuvana (Surabhi), the two actors sharing pleasant screen chemistry. Trouble for Pugazh begins when a minister evinces interest in a piece of prime land that apart from being a playground, held a lot of sentimental value for the elders of the community. With Pugazh, supported by the youngsters of the place resisting the move, Das the protege of the minister uses all means of persuasion, bribery and intimidation to force Pugazh to back off. How Pugazh tackles the situation is what follows.

Though there is humour and romance weaved in, they are not the distracting kind that would slacken the pace. Velraj’s camera catches the action realistically. There is no separate comedy track or comic sidekicks around the hero. RJ Balaji as one of Pugazh’s cronies plays down his comic act, limiting himself to one liners that are at times hilarious.

As the practical elder brother of Pugazh, Karunas surprisingly takes on a serious role here and plays it splendidly. Impressively taken are the scenes where he plays the buffer when things go awry for his younger sibling, warding off impending dangers when Pugazh takes on the local politician. The final face-off between Pugazh and his tormentors is ably choreographed, with Jai coming out well in the action scene. In its feel and flow of happenings, and in its play of local politics, it’s a mild reminder of ‘Madras’. Despite glitches, Pugazh is one of the better scripted films.                

Stay up to date on all the latest Entertainment Review news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

facebook twitter whatsapp