Nagarvalam: Undercooked Script with Too Much Chit Chat
Movie Review by Trijai Nerthi (Rocheston Certified Movie Critic)
Director Marxx’s Nagarvalam is a 24 frames per second formula headed towards self-destruction. It has an undercooked story, weak screenplay, poor casting and too much chit chat. Fifteen minutes into the film, I realize nothing makes sense. Every little moment is either weak or unmotivated. The only way this could’ve been better is if the director took time to polish his skills and redraft the same script multiple times before hastily venturing into the production stage.
Nagarvalam follows a metro-water lorry driver Kumar and his blooming love affair with a naive school girl, Janani. Just as he conjures up the courage to propose to her, he discovers that Janani’s brother is a cold-blooded goon who could possibly destroy him if he comes to know of their relationship. Soon, he decides to risk it all for his love but all his hopes take a tumble when he mistakenly causes a terrible accident.
If you found the synopsis to be messy and unrelated, wait till you actually watch the film. From the beginning, Nagarvalam doesn’t even establish its characters properly. Just two minutes into the film, a completely unwarranted song plays on. After the awful song, the film takes its own sweet time to get to the point. When it actually does, you find the director’s perspective to be appallingly juvenile.
There is so much unassociated comedy in the first half; you almost believe you’re watching comedy sequences stitched together from other films. It’s almost as if the first half is an aped montage of utterly horrible comedy films.
The film’s undercooked story and weak writing is so evident. Not only does the film submerge itself under a badly executed screenplay, it also constantly makes fun of a character’s disability. The director should’ve had the responsibility to do away with such crass humor.
Director Balaji Shakthivel’s Kadhal has a mildly similar central relationship but it broke your heart and managed to induce goose bumps because of its thought-provoking writing and clear sensibilities. Nagarvalam on the other hand only makes the relationship of its central characters look icky and staged.
Barring Yogi Babu and Bala Saravanan, none of the central characters can actually act. Yuthan Balaji never owns up to his role in the film. In fact, most of his expressions fall flat. All Deekshitha Manikkam ever does in the film is smile in a full-fledged manner. She never tries to bring alive her character. Yogi Babu and Bala Saravanan have very repetitive character sketches and the actor who plays Karan is never threatening enough to be passed off as a villain.
A lot of Illaiyaraaja’s songs make their way into the first half as the romance between the lead characters start to blossom. There is one parody of a song from Johnny that totally destroys the original impact the song has on you. Chances are you’ll never look at Johnny’s sound track the way you did. The few original songs that the film encloses are below average and forgettable.
On the whole, Nagarvalam is an undercooked concept beat to death by shabby and poor execution. There is simply no saving this one from self-destruction.