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Vakeel Saab Movie review: A masala court room drama

Modified On: 09 April 2021 | Reviewed By:

Vakeel Saab is the remake of the 2016 Hindi film Pink. And the remake has both mixtures of a masala entertainer and a courtroom drama.

Vakeel Saab

Director: Sriram Venu | Music Director: S Thaman

Vakeel Saab Movie Poster

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Cast: Pawan Kalyan, Shruthi Hassan, Niveditha Thomas

Directed By: Venu Sriram

The 2016 Pink was a courtroom drama about three girls who find themselves accused of attempt to murder after escaping molestation. Their only hope is an alcoholic lawyer who agrees to take up the case. 

Pink managed to break barriers and generate conversations, especially around consent. While the film has been tweaked with a generous dose of masala to not just suit Pawan Kalyan’s star image but also his budding political career, Venu manages to get the balance right for the most part.

Pallavi (Nivetha Thomas), Zareen (Anjali) and Divya (Ananya Nagalla) are roommates who work hard to make a living for their middle-class families. Their happy, simple and carefree life soon turns upside down due to an unfortunate encounter one night. Facing charges of solicitation and attempt to murder, the girls find themselves painted into a corner by an influential man and his friends.

Vakeel Saab aka Konidela Satyadev (Pawan Kalyan) is an alcoholic lawyer who hasn’t returned to court since the day he was suspended a few years ago. He drinks to mask the pain of a past he cannot correct and cover-up guilt he cannot let go of. But when he seems to be the only hope for these girls to prove their innocence, he gets his act together and fights for them.

Vakeel Saab is a mass entertainer, it doesn't have the subtlety of the original neither the character has any kind of similarities. the only common factor is both are lawyers. Amitabh Bachchan’s character from the original, Deepak Sehgal has bipolar disorder which is tweaked in the Telugu version.

Nivetha carries the weight of the film after him and few scenes featuring her are not just heart-wrenching, but also painful to watch. But then again, the predicament she finds herself in is a hard reality for many women in this country. Anjali comes a close second with her character Zareen, who always seems to give off a calm exterior but simmers right beneath the surface. 

Ananya’s character Divya does not have too many lines, but she manages to make her presence felt in what she’s given. So does Shruti Haasan, even if her character doesn’t get enough time or space for us to sympathise with her. Prakash Raj plays Nanda ji whom Satyadev faces in court, he pulls it off with ease.

Venu Sriram sticks to the plot of Pink for the most part but tweaks the screenplay given how differently Pawan Kalyan’s character has been fleshed out. Two fight scenes in particular, while stylish, seem placed for the heck of it and do not gel well with the flow of the film. 

Vakeel Saab doesn't make you as uncomfortable as Pink did due to the nature of the crime, especially in the court scenes. It does not because Satyadev’s dialogues in these scenes are placed to elicit whistles while also getting the point across and that dilutes the issue at hand. And despite all that neck rubbing and table flipping, Satyadev does get his moment in court to make it clear that “no means no”. At the end of the day, that’s all that matters.

Overall, it's a Pawan Kalyan show altogether, and if you’re a fan of masala potboilers backed by a strong message, vakeel Saab is watchable.

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