Movies

‘Semma Botha Aagatha’ review: A different high

The first 15 minutes of Semma Bodha Aagatha ambles on without purpose, much like an intoxicated man on the street. Ramesh (Atharvaa) is ensuring that everyone in his apartment is asleep to ensure that the ‘operation’ that he has planned along with Nandu (Karunakaran) can be executed. The mission is to bring a sex worker home, so that Ramesh can get over his recent break-up with Madhu (Mishti). He does manage to get her in, and Meenu (Anaika Soti) is out to seduce him. It results in the hideously-staged ‘Itemkaaran’ number. You wonder where this is all going.

And then, director Badri Venkatesh settles down into the narrative that sees Ramesh taking a trip to the hospital to help out a neighbor, only to come back to a dead body. Who’d kill her, is the big question, and from then on, the film deftly dives into thriller mode.

The answer lies somewhere in Palakkad, where Ramesh heads to with much determination. Meanwhile, there’s trouble back in the apartment — and Nandu has to salvage things. There’s palpable tension, with a couple of dead bodies and unanswered questions, but there’s still comedy — Karunakaran and Manobala are in good form.

Semma Botha Aagatha
  • Genre: Action thriller
  • Cast: Atharvaa, Anaika Soti, Mishti, Karunakaran
  • Storyline: A youngster gets involved in a mysterious murder that he hasn’t committed

Things heat up when Ramesh is in pursuit of answers, but the director rudely doles out an uninteresting flashback, which slows down the pace considerably, and also subjects us to Yuvan Shankar Raja’s half-drunk voice in ‘Idhayathil…’.

Thankfully, these distractions don’t last long. The action shifts to Palakkad, where the twists continue. There’s a notorious gang there who have a link to the murdered woman. Meanwhile, back in Chennai, there are seemingly-trivial things happening. Everything converges in a convincing climax that answers most of our queries.

Atharva gets in a neat performance as Ramesh (fun fact: he was Ramesh in his debut flick Baana Kathadi, directed by the same filmmaker) who manages to create an impact whenever he is high... on drink and daredevilry (fun fact: his latest appearance was in a music video titled Bodhai Kodhai).

Director Badri Venkatesh does manage to write some interesting characters…like John Vijay playing a rowdy who loves Ilaiyaaraja songs. Even the sex worker (played by Anaika Soti) has a share in whistle-worthy moments. But it’s the flashbacks and need to weave a love story around the protagonist that bogs down things. Those are glitches, as is the fact that he decided to title his film Semma Bodha Aagatha, indicating a subject that would revolve only around bars and discotheques. Fortunately, the film rises about it all to give us a somewhat-pleasing kind of a…high.

Semma Botha Aagatha

Genre: Action thriller

Cast: Atharvaa, Anaika Soti, Mishti, Karunakaran

Storyline: A youngster gets involved in a mysterious murder that he hasn’t committed


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Printable version | Dec 4, 2021 2:19:31 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/movies/semma-botha-aagatha-review-a-different-high/article24293311.ece

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