Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: Sumanth, Genelia, Kota Srinivasa Rao, Brahmanandam, Tanikella Bharani
Director: Surya Kiran
Genres: Indie & Art House
About Sathyam, a songwriting taxi driver seeking love, forgi
H. Bala | Carson - hey, we have an IKEA store! - CA USA | 02/17/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)
"All hail the renowned lyricist Chakradhari, who has consistently penned a slew of topcharting songs. Except that he hasn't, really. A lowly taxi driver named Sathyam (Sumanth) - long disowned by his father and in life just seemingly going thru the motions - actually ghost writes for the great Chakradhari. Young Sathyam has had the gift for writing since childhood, to the detriment, in fact, of his academics since all he had time for was composing songs and poetry. Family wise, nowadays, the only one with which he still keeps in contact is his younger sister (played well by Varsha), although this doesn't keep him from lending a helping hand on the sly when his family is in need. Sathyam's life is breezy but unfocused. He minds that another man is taking credit for his songs, but not enough right now to actively do anything about it.
And then, crashing a wedding with his friends, he sees the lovely medical student Ankitha (Genelia) and is instantly smitten. Now a man in love, he seeks to make a name for himself. But how can he make an impression on a girl who sees him only as a mere taxi driver? To make it worse, an unfortunate series of events has Ankitha perceiving him as an uncouth rowdy. To make it even worse, Sathyam learns that he has a rival for Ankitha's affections (not that Sathyam is even in the running here), in the shape of Ankitha's tall, handsome, rich college mate. It's enough to make a guy listlessly pine and daydream...
I guess I wasn't in a receptive mood for so much wistfulness when I saw this one. Methinks that this guy Sathyam actually spends way too much time mooning over the girl, his daydreams framed in mostly drab musical numbers. It's a bit irksome how often he abruptly realizes that he's once more caught in a daydream and then oh how rueful the smile he flashes. The film pounds its audience with just how much the guy loves the girl. I haven't seen this actor Sumanth in too many films, but I wasn't feeling him in his lead role. Sumanth is fairly good, except that his Sathyam comes off as such a self-sacrificing sad sack, willing to get trampled by those he love, that he annoyed me a bit. He only achieves a kind of vigor when engaged in a brawl, which happens quite a bit, actually. And, apparently, Sathyam is a sensei of street thug trouncing. There's even a song "Rendu Mokka Jonna" which has his friends exalting his brawling skills.
SATHYAM (or SATYAM) is a Telugu film and came out in 2003, the year Genelia D'Souza first started doing movies, and she's the reason I checked out this film. SATHYAM is Genelia's third film (after Boys- DVD and TUJHE MERI KASAM) and it doesn't serve her well that she got stuck with a typical subdued romantic role. She only really ever gets to show that spark of hers in the musical numbers. To fully get how fantastic Genelia D'Souza is as an actress and how sunny and appealing and full of life she is, you'll have to see her other films (Jaane Tu... ya jaane na (DVD), MR. MEDHAVI, Bommarillu, etc.). Trust me, trust me, you won't regret it.
Some SPOILERS in the next paragraph:
Another way in which SATHYAM falters is in establishing the romance as so one-sided for much of the film. Until the final five minutes or so, Sathyam barely registers on Ankitha's radar (she's more concerned about her dad meeting her student fees). At the end, I'm not so sure that she even really falls in love with Sathyam, although it's nice that she does finally realize that the guy isn't quite the rowdy hooligan she believed him to be. But, certainly, that last scene at the train station isn't quite convincing. I was also waiting for the film to capitalize on one tiny subplot, but it never happens. Earlier on, Ankitha reveals that she's a big fan of a particular song written by the famous songwriter Chakradhari, except that it was Sathyam who had written that song. But there's no payoff to that plot thread. The closing credits wrap everything up in a nice, neat bow, as abrupt closure is given regarding Sathyam's estranged father and also the famous lyricist who for so long had claimed Sathyam's songs as his own. But the impression left is that the movie had run out of time and inclination to give good room for these subplots to organically find their resolutions.
As a fan of Genelia, I'm happy I caught this picture, although I probably won't be seeing it again. SATHYAM falls in that category of being above mediocre, but not much above mediocre. I don't think much of the songs. The lead actor is good but the titular character he plays doesn't completely win me over. It's not the performances of the cast which undermine the film, as the acting is across-the-board fine (I even dug Sathyam's simple friend, a poor soul who poses for a photo op, only to have unflattering posters of him turn up all over the city). I wish that Genelia had had more of a chance to show off her personality and her acting. But SATHYAM was still early in her acting career, so it's cool. For Genelia D'Souza in 2003, the best was yet to come. And, as of right now in 2009, having seen how talented and awesome and beautiful she is and how good her other films, I anticipate even bigger things in her future. Seriously, check out those other films."