Jaguar - Movie Review

Thursday, October 6, 2016 - 16:15
Jaguar (2016)
Cast & Crew: 

Film: Jaguar 
Cast: Nikhil Kumar, Deepti Sati, Brahmanandam, Rao Ramesh, Adarsh Balakrishna, Jagapati Babu, Sampath Raj, Adithya Menon, Ramya Krishna, Vidyullekha Raman, Avinash, Tamannaah
Story: Vijayendra Prasad
Music: S S Thaman
Cinematography: Manoj Paramahamsa
Editing: Ruben
Producers: Anitha Kumaraswamy
Screenplay, dialogue & Direction: A Mahadev
Release Date: October 6, 2016
CBFC Rating: UA



In the very first scenes, an unnamed, masked killer (Nikhil Kumar) hacks into a news channel owned by Sampath Raj, announces that a murder will be telecast LIVE in five minutes, goes about committing the gruesome murder of a high-profile judge. A sharp CBI officer, played by Jagapathi Babu, swings into action. He christens the killer Jaguar. 

The scene shifts to a swanky medical college campus where the killer metamorphoses into a ragging-loving youngster pulling the legs of his seniors. Jaguar is now SS Krishna, posing himself as an orphan who apparently has a hidden agenda. He calmly notices the rivalry between a good-hearted student leader and the Chairman's (played by Adithya Menon) son. He woos the heroine when it is time for a song. 

Even as the CBI fails to crack the case, another LIVE murder by Jaguar is allowed to be telecast by the TRP-hungry media baron. All is set for a direct face-off between the villain and the hero.


'Jaguar' grapples with a formula-based story line from word go. After a brief flashback narrated by the student leader's character, the audience would be able to sense what is in store. In order to deflect the audience's attention, the story-writer (was it Vijayendra Prasad's innovation or Mahadev's?) in a too-clever-by-half attempt presents the hero as a selfish person who says everyone in the world is selfish. 

The thread of exploitative doctors defrauding poor patients doesn't hold interest either. The flashback episodes involving Rao Ramesh (as a people's doctor) are neatly-narrated and that's all. The fact that the hero has no much emotional, memorable lines is the film's big backdrop. After all, the title is very larger-than-life and it was the least that was expected. 

All focus seems to be on presenting action sequences with as much style and grandeur as possible. The rich visuals, imaginative action choreography - they deserve appreciation. But elevation of the hero's character is sorely missing. The climax sequences lack tempo. There is no detailing around the hero's expressions and demeanor. 

The director didn't realize the folly of overplaying the element of media sensationalism through the characters and dialogues of Sampath Raj and Jagapathi Babu. Another element that is over-indulged is that of the lecherous chairman's son who molests one girl after another. 

The songs are fine, thanks to SS Thaman. However, because of a lack of substantive romance between the lead pair, the songs end up seeming like an excuse for extravaganza. By the way, the film's budget is touted to be something like Rs. 75 cr. 

Once the hero is made to do comedy with Brahmanandam (a boring character who speaks too much), it becomes clear that there is nothing much except a done-to-death formula. Ideas like the CBI officer tweeting every often, a pet drawing a sketch perfectly, etc don't make a mark. 

Nikhil's performance has both hits and misses. His built gives him aplomb. On the other hand, his wooden expressions can't be missed in comedy scenes. A long way to go for him. Deepthi Sathi looks off-colour. Sampath and Jagapathi look stylish and act convincingly. Rao Ramesh and Adithya Menon pass muster. Ramya Krishna is surprisingly boring, just as Brahmi is. The student leader has done a very good job. 

Thaman's RR and Manoj Paramhamsa's cinematography make the film a technically rich output. Art direction and editing are fine.

Bottomline: 'Jaguar' is an action-drama that reeks predictability. The college campus scenes lack zing. Comedy falls flat. A hero who can do great stunts doesn't have an exciting villain to conquer. Flashback episodes in second half are a plus. Visually commendable.

Reviewed by: 
Vishwanath V