`Saroja` - Prabhu comes up with another winner
With his racy presentation of Saroja, director Venkat Prabhu has proved that his debut Chennai 600028 was no flash in the pan.
The technical quality, thanks to scintillating cinematography by Shakthi Saravanan, delightful score by Yuvan Shankar Raja and backed by good performances by all members of the cast provide an apt foil to a good script that makes watching Saroja a pleasure.
The movie is all about the adventures of four friends Jagapathi Babu (S.P. Charan), Ram Babu (Vaibhav), Ganesh (Premji) and Ajay Raj (Shiva), who are stuck in a forest enroute to a one-day-international cricket match in Hyderabad.
They become an unwitting part of a drama over the kidnapping of a woman Saroja (Veda) by a gangster (played excellently by Sampath). Ravichandran, an assistant commissioner of police (Jayaram), and the worried father of Saroja, played by Prakash Raj, help to take the edge-of-the-seat suspenseful rescue of the girl to a pulsating climax.
Prabhu has provided enough entertainment to cat-calling frontbenchers through the item numbers performed by a moll (Nikita). Virtually 75 percent of the movie is shot in the night on high speed film and the result is a treat.
Yuvan Shankar Raja seems to be improving with each film, well on the footsteps of his accomplished father Ilaya Raja.
The sepia night frames of Shakthi Saravanan are indeed brilliant, setting the mood for the gloomy atmosphere and increasing the nail biting wait for the denouement.
The team, which made Chennai-600 028 a fine movie, is back in Saroja. Except for the producer, the same team is working together again. Venkat Prabhu is in charge of the story, screenplay, dialogue and direction. Amma Creations` T Shiva is producing Saroja in super 35 format.
Four poor young men get into an extraordinary situation on an ordinary day and how they manage to come out of it is the story of Saroja. One of the main characters, Siva, is a television actor and he marries Kajal Agarwal. The wedding reception was shot at a mansion on East Coast Road, Chennai, earlier this month. The reception was literally star-studded.
Prakashraj and Jayaram play important roles along with Siva, Vaibhav, Saran and Premji Ameran. Premji and Brahmanandam handle the comedy track. A highlight is a traffic jam scene filmed at a huge cost, using about 200 buses, Lorries and other vehicles.
A song sequence was picturised at MGM featuring 30 to 35 5 television artistes. Matilda, winner of the best singer in the Singapore Idol Show club, sings in this film. The song, `Aaja Meri Soniye` was shot in Singapore St. James Power Station, Asia`s biggest entertainment club. Leading Hindi playback singer Adnan Sami sings the song, `Kodana Kodi Athil Kulippom Vilaiyadi.`
Yuvan Shankar Raja, who set the tunes for the songs, has taken 50 days for the background score. Almost 90 per cent of the shooting has been done at nights. It is wholly a technicians` film and Venkat Prabhu guarantees 2-1/2-hours of `happy experience`.
The film is being made in Telugu also. Disco Shanthi`s husband Srihari plays the role donned by Jayaram in Tamil.