'Arjun Suravaram' review: A film that works only in parts

From frame-to-frame adaptations to restyling it to suit the local sensibilities,  the makers select a successful film of their choice in the hope of replicating a box-office success.

Published: 30th November 2019 11:33 AM  |   Last Updated: 30th November 2019 11:33 AM   |  A+A-

A still from the film.

A still from the film.

Express News Service

A lot of filmmakers look at remakes as a safe bet as compared to spending big bucks on a story that is unproven.

From frame-to-frame adaptations to restyling it to suit the local sensibilities,  the makers select a successful film of their choice in the hope of replicating a box-office success.

Joining the league of remakes - ABCD, Falaknuma Das, 1st Rank Raju, Oh Baby and Evaru, which got released earlier this year, actor Nikhil Siddharth’s long-delayed film Arjun Suravaram, a remake of Tamil action thriller Kanithan, hit the screens yesterday. 

Faithful for the most part to its original, the film is about an investigative journalist and a do-gooder, Arjun Lenin Suravaram (Nikhil Siddharth), who gets trapped in a fake certificate scam as he begins preparations to get closer to his dream job.

He sets out to track the mastermind behind this scam with the help of his lawyer-friend, police constable and his colleague. The cat and mouse chase between Arjun and his nemesis runs the plot of the movie. 

To begin with, this movie will constantly give you deja vu of Dhruva (a racy action thriller starring Ram Charan).

For the most part, the story is nothing but a dramatic battle-of-wits between its two central characters. Director TN Santosh gives us conflicts with resolutions that appear to be exaggerated, unrealistic and simplistic.

A scene where our protagonist attends a job interview with the BBC and we have five interviewers of which one insults the young man’s language speaking skills.

Soon, a riled-up Arjun rises from his chair, speaks in what we think is a demo of his speaking skills and leaves the room to give up his life-time ambition just for the sake of it! Another scene featuring Vidyullekha Raman doesn’t impress either.

Like Dhruva or any other racy action thriller, this is one such film in which you don’t want it’s lead actor to lose his battle in finding the brain behind a scam or mafia. But Arjun Suravaram never fully exploits the intriguing complexity of its premise.

The film neither provides any genuine surprise nor comes with an exciting execution to keep you invested in the story. It’s hard to find one moment without melodrama and scenes which doesn’t appear to be far-fetched and unconvincing, even if it deals with some real-life and thought-provoking incidents. 

Often even average movies do well because the suspense element drives the narration with dramatic and unpredictable twists than anything you are likely to imagine as a viewer.  

The director takes too many cinematic liberties to get out of the screenplay situations and as you may see, the film comes off looking way too contrived.

Arjun Suravaram would not have turned out this artificial and amateurish had the film stayed true to its genre and the characters performed their part convincingly. 

Nikhil lays on the charm in a few sequences, but it’s too small a recompense for his tiresome wait to see the light of day of this action thriller. Vennela Kishore and Sathya lend some comic relief to the film, while Tarun Arora, Nagineedu and Posani Krishna Murali deliver compelling performances.

Lavanya Tripathi made her presence felt as Arjun’s love interest. Overall, Arjun Suravaram works only in parts and may appeal to the viewers who want to see Nikhil in the thick of action.

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