A suspense thriller that is intelligently structured, Vishal’s Thiru directed Samar is an all new experience for Tamil commercial cinema viewers. It is a thriller with the villains playing mind games, something that has not been attempted earlier.
The screenplay and story by S Ramakrishnan and Thiru is intricately plotted with just enough commercial elements. There are just three full songs and a bit which goes with the narrative. The film is racy and there are enough surprising twists and turns in the thriller. The hero concept is also given an all new look, which makes it interesting.
Sakthi (Vishal) is a guy who takes tourists on trekking in deep forest in and around Ooty. He is in love with Roopa (Sunaina), but breaks up with her and later goes on a trip to Bangkok in search of his lady love. Sakthi befriends Maya (Trisha), a mystery woman on the flight who proves to be his saviour in the foreign land. However our hero is caught up in a web of deceit when life become a reality show staged by two deadly guys John(JD Chakravarthy) and Arunachalam (Manoj Bajpai).
The film works largely due to the treatment and screenplay which stresses on moods, anxieties and sheer dread. The tension in the air between the predator (villains) and the prey(Vishal), crackles with energy.
It is technically slick with great camera work by Richard M Nathan in Bangkok and Pudhuchery, and film is racy at 2 hours 15 minutes. The action scenes are superbly choreographed by foreign stuntmen and Vishal chasing John Vijay through narrow alleys and streets of Bangkok is shot stylishly.
Holding the restless plot in place is Vishal’s clenched and controlled performance. He underplays and his performance is unfussy, no-nonsense and largely humourless to accentuate the introspective nature of a troubled man. He is convincing with his expressive body and eye language.
Trisha is good as Maya, not the run-of-the-mill role you normally see in commercial cinema. She looks good and has played her part well. Sunaina has hardly anything to do while Manoj Bajpai and JD Chakravarthy are adequate. Music of Yuvan Shankar Raja is nothing much to talk about except ‘Azhago Azhagu..’ song.
On the downside, it lacks nativity and there is an American television reality show look to the film. The CG work in some scenes are tacky.
Samar isn’t what one would rate as great cinema but we assure it has enough zing, visual and thrills to keep you in your seats for its runtime of a little over two hours. A perfect for a night out at the movies.