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24 - Good plot squandered by over-ambitious and immature screenplay

Suriya's 24 (Tamil) Review - Good plot squandered by over-ambitious and immature screenplay

*ing - Suriya Sivakumar, Samantha Ruth Prabhu, Nithya Menen, Saranya Ponvannan, Girish Karnad

Time travel is a rather sensitive theme for a movie. Very few movies in the world have succeeded after taking the time travel concept. One has to be extremely careful with the sequence of events for it to truly succeed. On the other hand, the happenings can be simplified to handle the sensitivity. That is what Vikram Kumar has tried and the result is an over-ambitious and immature science fiction movie.

* Spoiler Alert - Skip to the next para*

Genius scientist Sethuraman (Suriya) lives in Meghamalai with his wife Priya (Nithya Menen) and infant son Manikandan. He is on the verge of inventing a time machine, project 24, on his birthday. But his evil twin brother Athreya (Suriya) wants the time machine for himself. Sethuraman manages to escape from Athreya, hides the time machine watch with his infant son and boards a train and gives the child to Sathyabama (Saranya Ponvannan). Athreya who was in pursuit meets with an accident and is comatose for 26 years. 26 years later the child grows into a watch mechanic, Subramani (Suriya). Under accidental circumstances, Subramani understands the time machine and starts using it to woo his lady love Sathyabama (Samantha Ruth Prabhu). Meanwhile Athreya wakes up from his 26 year slumber and is paralysed from waist down. He wants to go back 26 years to avoid the accident. Whether he manages to do that or not forms the rest of the story.

* Spoiler ends *

Considering just the plot, it is a brilliant plot but the over-ambitious and immature screenplay results in a not so good movie. The director has introduced a lot of branching stories and that results in a lengthy movie. Also the romance, between Subramani and Sathyabama, is very lame with "imaginoromansophilia". The director has concentrated on the perfection of time travel sequences but missed out on logic in many a place. One of the main differences in a Sci-Fi movie of Hollywood and here, is the presence of a Scientific Advisor in western movies. The lack of a science advisor is blatantly evident in the movie. Also, there are way too many coincidences. To reduce the number of coincidences the director has setup some of the scenes well.

Suriya in triple roles has given a 50-50 performance. There are scenes where he has done very well and some scenes in which he is evidently struggling. His antagonist portrayal is better than the other two roles. Samantha Ruth Prabhu for the umpteenth time acts as an innocent girl who keeps the brain in the closet when with the hero. Her acting is as usual, nothing to say about it. Nithya Menen does well in her small screen presence. Saranya Ponvannan is now the go to lady for the character of loving mother. She is doing the character in every other movie, by now it would be so easy for her that she would do such character with one eye closed. Girish Karnad is in an almost cameo appearance and the seasoned actor he is, has not overdone anything. Rest of the support cast including Sathya, Ajay etc also have also their jobs well.

The best technical aspect of the movie is the production design by Subrata Chakravarthy and Amit Ray. The forest estate scenes are captured very well even though it is a set. S. Tirru's cinematography is good. He has scaled up to the location he is given for the camera. VFX is also better than in many of the contemporaries. Music by A. R. Rahman is a shocker. Nothing else to say about it. Equally shocking are the lyrics by Vairamuthu and Madan Karky. Karky also misses out on the dialogues, where he tries to explicitly explain everything, even in some supposedly dreadful situations. Prawin Pudi's editing is non-existing. He could have easily reduced the runtime by at least 30 minutes and that is a very conservative number. 

Verdict: Immature screenplay squanders a potentially brilliant sci-fi thriller.


5, Review, Tamil