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"Joot" ... another actioner for the season

ON THE lines of "Dhil" and "Dhool" comes Sree Lakshmi Productions' "Joot" and in keeping with the trend, Srikanth has opted for a change of image. Though racy for the most part, except the song sequences that are the usual spokes in the wheel, the story (M. S. Ramesh) is typical of the innumerable actioners you've been watching over the years.

The mafia, its ruthless head, corrupt police officials, a macho hero and bloody action — "Joot" has all the ingredients. The only atypical factor is that the heroine too has been given importance in a couple of scenes. And for Meera Jasmine, after the "Anjaneya" disaster, where she was more a glorified junior artiste, "Joot" must appear a godsend.

Easwaran (Srikanth) brings his father (Murali) to the city for treatment. He is unwittingly caught in the crossfire between the residents of the area and the land mafia, loses his brother (Shyam Ganesh) in the bargain and vows to avenge his death. It begins as a lone battle but Easwaran is lucky to gain the assistance of the police commissioner and timely help from the young lawyer, Meera (Meera Jasmine).

The hero being a one-man army in our films is nothing new. Neither is the bad man being evil incarnate, anything novel. But when the former shows traces of intelligence, it is appealing. Only that Easwaran could have shown presence of mind more often. Srikanth's well-built physique helps to accentuate the rustic look, but the actor still looks a little too refined to pass off as a fiery villager. Performance wise too he could do better. A little honing in the department of histrionics should help the romantic hero fare better in such roles. Meera Jasmine looks radiant and with those telling eyes and sprightly demeanour she sure makes an impression.

The fight sequences, choreographed by `Fefsi' Vijayan, who also plays the underworld don, are at times too crude (slitting the throat with a broken blade is an example). The obscenity in dialogue (N. Prasanna Kumar) in certain scenes involving Vivek are sore points of "Joot," that comes with an A certificate. "Azhagiya Koondhal ... " sung by Karthik and Srivardhini holds some magic and that's about it as far as Vidya Sagar's compositions go. The title song on Srikanth and Tejasri is racy but totally out of place. Introducing unconnected item numbers in a fast moving narration is an outmoded norm that existed more than two decades ago, you thought. "Joot" proves otherwise. Cinematography (Vijay Milton and G. Samkumar) shows an aesthetic slant in certain sequences. So does Kadhir's art.

Azhagam Perumal is in charge of the screenplay and direction. "Joot" is his second offering after "Dumm Dumm Dumm". The refreshing approach of the latter is definitely missing here. So what if there's nothing new? "Joot" ought to prove another seasonal fiesta for action lovers.


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