Santosh Subramaniam – Hey, Jayam Ravi Can Act

One of the revelations – and pleasant surprises - of Santosh Subramaniam is how much Jayam Ravi has honed his acting skills.

We were quite disappointed with Jayam Ravi’s unpolished performance in Something Something Unakkum Enakkum.

Suffice to say, Jayam Ravi is orders of magnitude better in Santosh Subramaniam, released on April 11/12 in the U.S.

If only, Jayam Ravi would improve his dancing skills now.

By and large, dancing in Tamil movies makes us want to lunge at the screen in frustration. It’s totally graceless, like a bunch of pigs jumping up and down. If you want to see some grace and style in dancing, watch some of Michael Jackson’s old dances, particularly for Billie Jean and you’ll realize what fine dancing is. Even Bollywood is not that good when it comes to dancing, maybe just a shade better than Kollywood.

And who the heck is the dance choreographer for Santosh Subramaniam. We’d like to know. The bozo has done a disservice to the movie and should consider sticking to choregoraphing funeral processions going forward. You know the kind common in many Tamil movies where a few wailing drunks beat their chests and lead the funeral procession.

Besides Jayam Ravi, Santosh Subramaniam - a remake of the successful Telugu film Bommarillu – features Genelia and Prakash Raj in key roles.

Santosh Subramaniam  is – no surprise here – yet another teenage love story.

The story itself is nothing to get excited about and is fairly boring in parts. Santosh Subramaniam (Jayam Ravi) is the eponymous hero of this movie. Prakash Raj plays his loving but controlling father, who micromanages his children’s lives.

A few days after Santosh’s engagement to a mouse of a girl is fixed by his father, Santosh meets and falls in love with a different girl Hassini (Genelia), a young and vivacious college student.

When Prakash Raj accidentally finds out about Santosh’s love affair, he is totally aghast because the date of his son’s wedding is drawing near.

At the first show of Santosh Subramaniam in Movie City Theater in Edison (New Jersey) on April 12, the young H1/L1 crowd would constantly lapse into chitchat, a sign that they were not completely engaged with the movie.

Prakash Raj is, as usual, a delight to watch on the screen. A versatile actor, Prakash Raj delivers the goods whether as the villain in Pokiri or the loving but controlling father in Santosh Subramaniam.

Genelia oozes life and spunk on the screen but in Santosh Subramaniam we felt she was not as much in her element and definitely not as effective as Jayam Ravi. She tended to overact often and seemed too childlike for our taste.

Also, much to our disappointment the final confrontation between Jayam Ravi and Prakash Raj was flat.

We liked the music in Santosh Subramaniam. Most of the songs in the movie are above average and sure to find favor with the audience. Our favorite were Adada Adada and Kadhaluku Kanngal Illai.

All in all, Santosh Subramaniam, while not a great movie by any stretch of imagination, is one of the better movies to come out of the Kollywood sewers.

9 Responses to "Santosh Subramaniam – Hey, Jayam Ravi Can Act"

  1. srikanth   April 13, 2008 at 4:52 pm

    Nice review.But how can you say the songs are nice.picturization is one can beat A.R.Rahman’s music’s. GURU and JODHA AKBHAR is an example. Responds:

    We were not too excited with the picturization of the songs in Santosh Subramaniam because the accompanying dance scenes made us see red.

  2. sriny_97   June 14, 2008 at 10:16 pm

    Another not-so-good remake from the dude ‘Jayam’ Ravi.Lacks a fast and racy narrative.Man,I’ve been more entertained watching paint dry.Genelia overacts cloyingly to the point of creating nausea to the viewers.The climax was also a let down,to say the least.The songs were above average but the movie has the speed of a polar bear just awake from hibernation.God ,can’t we hope for a neat and credible story not having plot holes through which u can drive a truck into and a thrilling and fast screenplay which keeps our eyes glued to the TV.If the main story is very good,I don’t give a shit about the acting of the lead artistes.Can’t the Tamil film directors do atleast this?

  3. sandhya   June 16, 2008 at 12:24 pm

    Y do people say bad things about such a good actor.
    Jayam ravi can act from the begining.
    i think santhosh subramanium is a good film.
    the songs are excellent.
    and i think jayam ravi dances perfectly fine
    i like him soo much
    i think its choreographed well too
    soo i dont know wat u lot are chatting about
    and for the fact i learn dancing soo i probably know more about dancing then u do
    wat is wrong with the director
    he is a good director
    i like him too
    u know this is the 4th hit in a row that director raja has given.
    can u lot just stop saying bad comments about a good actor Responds:

    We’ve noted your comment on Jayam ‘Brando’ Ravi.

  4. shades of grey   August 11, 2008 at 9:01 pm

    Santosh Subramaniam isn’t half bad. It’s quite a mediocre film and by the end of it I just wanted to strangle Genelia’s neck, but by Kollywood standards it’s viewable. You are absolutely right about Jayam Ravi’s dancing skills. For the most part he’s jumping around like a monkey. Definitely cringe-worthy. The highlight of the film for me was Prakash Raj (who in my opinion is a chameleon) and his father-son relationship with Jayam Ravi. The relationship was believable and very relatable. Genelia’s character was irritable. I disliked her childlike nature. Her character could have easily been strong and quirky but it unfortunately came out as infantile and immature. At times throughout the film it seemed like Jayam Ravi had to discipline her in a fatherly manner. Which as a love story didn’t work for me. responds:

    You write above: by the end of it I just wanted to strangle Genelia’s neck

    Irony is that Genelia is going from strength to strength…she’s got a Bollywood hit now in Jaane too ya jaane naa.

  5. shades of grey   August 12, 2008 at 5:48 am

    Yeah JTYJN is Genelia’s first Bollywood hit. I don’t mind her in that film. I don’t actually like JTYJN, as the plot is nothing special. I mean other than some decent performances by the lead pair and the supporting cast, the film really did nothing for me. I know I’m in the minority here, as everyone I speak to is in love with this film. Genelia’s an alright actress but her character just irritated the hell out of me in Santosh Subramaniam.

  6. gandhiji   August 12, 2008 at 10:06 am

    “wring her neck” .. sound kinky.. I agree.. she was behaving like a “special needs” kid.. the other girl was also behaving similarly.. director’s fault, i guess.

    It’s being remade into Hindi with Genelia again.. Can Nana Patekar beat Prakash Raj. I am not much of a hindi watcher.. Has Nana Patekar done any noteworthy soft characters? He has always been in rough roles in the movies I have watched. Responds:

    1. You write above: Can Nana Patekar beat Prakash Raj

    That’s a hard question to answer since both are talented actors, a rarity in Indian filmdom.

    We’ve seen Nana in quite a few Hindi movies Welcome, Taxi Number 9211, Dus Kahaniyan, Bluff Master and Apaharan.

    Although most of the aforementioned movies were crap, Nana was decent but not noteworthy in any of them (except maybe Apaharan), probably because the script didn’t lend itself to the display of his acting talents.

    Prakash Raj is one of the few who can act in Tamil movies, way ahead of the Ajiths, Vijays, Suryas and the Podi Pasanga (kids) like Simbhu, Vishal, Jeeva et al.

    2. You write: Has Nana Patekar done any noteworthy soft characters?

    If we remember right, he had a soft role in one of the 10 films that make up Dus Kahaniyaan. This is what we wrote in December 2007: Gubbare is directed by Sanjay Gupta and features Nana Patekar, one of the few Bollywood actors to understand the meaning of acting. This is again a touching film with much of the movie actually happening during a short bus journey.

  7. aditya_k   November 6, 2008 at 9:32 am

    genelia got a national award for her work in bomarillu…. Responds:

    You write above: genelia got a national award

    Do film awards mean anything at all in India.

    One of the worst Bollywood actors Abhishek Bachchan has won over two dozen awards.

    By the way, which is Genelia’s National Award here?

  8. aditya_k   November 7, 2008 at 11:49 am

    i am so sorry…..genelia hasn’t won national award…its the filmfare award she won…….national awards are given by the government….these awards are very prestigious….FYI abhishek hasn’t won a single one of them…

  9. trishna147   June 17, 2009 at 10:13 am

    i think that Genelia is a far better actress than waste [deleted] like Nayanthara, Shriya Saran and Trisha
    at least she can act and doesn’t rely on the so-called ‘glamour-factor’
    and jeyam ravi was good in the film
    and i liked Santhosh Subramaniyam, because it was a nice family entertainer, which didn’t have the ridiculous fight scenes, and the stupid irrelevant comedy and the kuttu songs. but to be honest, i prefered Bommarillu compared to the tamil one. anyhow SS is better than the crap that came out at the time, ie Kuruvi Responds:

    We’ve seen Genelia in Jaane Tu Ya Jaane Na, Santosh Subramaniam, Chennai Kadhal, and maybe one or two other movies.

    The young girl seems to be getting better.

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