Last Updated on September 22, 2021 by Shiv Nath Hari
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Sarpatta Parambarai Movie download;Pa Ranjith’s Sarpatta Parambarai revolves around a community of boxers in the Madras of the 70s of which the titular Sarpatta Parambarai is one of the clans. The primary plot is centred on the rivalry between Sarpatta Parambarai, coached by Rangan (Pasupathy, a fabulously controlled performance), a former champion, and the Idiyappam Parambarai, whose trainer Duraikannu (GM Kumar), was Rangan’s bunny during their playing days. Until its halfway mark, the film’s entirely focussed on this rivalry, giving us pressure-cooker situations that ultimately result in Kabilan (Arya, whose sheer physicality helps us buy the character), a boxing enthusiast forced to give up the sport by his concerned mother Bakkiyam (Anupama Kumar), challenging Durai’s protégé and the so-far invincible champion Vembuli (John Kokken, effective) to a fight.
The narrative beats that lead us to this moment are generic, but what gives Sarpatta Parambarai its distinct flavour is its setting and the filmmaking flair. When the film opens, we are in the early days of the Emergency, and we see it celebrating the Dravidian leadership standing up to it (and subtly acknowledging the present-day parallels). Cinematographer Murali G captures the action inside the ring in a thrilling manner and Ranjith keeps amping up the drama, helped by Santhosh Narayanan’s electric score, with charged scenes that clearly define the innumerable characters and their motivations. From Rangan’s aggressive son Vetriselan (Kalaiyarasan, solid), who has to constantly face the humiliation of being undermined by his own father, to Daddy aka Kevin (a terrific John Vijay), the Anglo-Indian who is a friend/father figure to Kabilan, every character is memorable.
Even as the drama around boxing keeps us hooked, as in this director’s films, the social and political undertones give us another story in parallel — of another community, which has to fight both inside and outside the ring to reclaim its rights. In fact, in the latter half of the film, this angle becomes the dominant story. From a film about a boxing, it becomes the story of an individual — Kabilan —battling his way to redemption after losing his way because the system wants to stereotype people of his social status. Even here, the beats feel familiar, but the dynamics between the characters help avoid the scenes from feeling clichéd. Take the relationship between Kabilan and his wife Mariyamma (Dushara Vijayan). As much as we see her complain about her husband choosing a life of violence, she also remains his emotional fulcrum, forcing him to mend his ways. In fact, in one scene, it is she who saves Kabilan, literally!
The film’s major success lies in transporting us to the era and ensuring that not a character or a prop feels out of place. The casting and the production design (Ramalingam) deserve all the accolades. And the film’s highpoint — a gloriously staged fight (Anbariv are the stunt choreographers) between Kabilan and Dancing Rose (Shabeer Kallarakkal), a quirky and experienced fighter from the Idiyappam Parambarai — is hard to forget.
With the Arya-starrer, director Pa. Ranjith brings to life the vibrant boxing culture in ‘70s North Madras
Sarpatta Parambarai Movie download There’s an inherent problem with the arc of sports-based films: its predictable nature. The protagonist shows a keen interest in a sport, but the road to success is filled with thorns. He/she overcomes all that with difficulty, and emerges victorious. This very staple formula is what most sporting dramas are constructed with.
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Pa. Ranjith’s latest Tamil offering, Sarpatta Parambarai, is not too different. It has a protagonist (Kabilan, played by Arya) wanting to do well in boxing, but has several roadblocks. It’s Ranjith’s trademark flourishes that make this otherwise lengthy film worthwhile.
Unlike Farhan Akthar’s recent Hindi boxing drama Toofan, which lay emphasis primarily on the challenges in front of the protagonist, Ranjith designs Sarpatta… about the lifestyle of the people. It focusses on North Madras, the epicentre of boxing in the city that was home to two warring boxing clans: Sarpatta and Idiyappa. This cultural history comes alive in the film, with the set design and clothing patterns taking you back to the ‘70s. Even the political landscape of the country plays a role; the way it has been incorporated into the script makes for interesting viewing.
- Director: Pa. Ranjith
- Cast: Arya, Kalaiyarasan, Pasupathi, Dushara, John Kokken
- Duration: 2 hours 53 mins
- Plot: A young man from 1970’s segregated Madras finds himself with the opportunity to redeem his boxing clan and himself from years of defeat. Can he do it? Will he be allowed to?
Sarpatta Parambarai Movie download The first half packs a punch, but the film withers in the second when the protagonist undergoes a transformation. Suddenly, the editing and sequences look all over the place. A supposedly important character is introduced quite late, before Ranjith designs a last-ball finish style to end proceedings.
The film might open and end with Arya’s Kabilan, but there are several memorable characters that you meet along the way: John Vijay as Daddy (watch out for the scene with Arya in which he says, “You’ve found your path, bugger”) and Shabeer Kallarakkal as Dancing Rose (his fight with Kabilan is the best of all the bouts in the film) are two that stand out. There are other neat performances by Pasupathy and Kalaiarasan, but one wishes that John Kokken’s Vembuli character had as much meat as his muscles.
You do get reminded of Vetri Maaran’s earlier works and a bit of Ranjith’s work in Madras as well here, but Sarpatta Parambarai incorporates elements like caste conflict and the question of pride into the sporting milieu to make it an engaging watch. It is also an ode to Madras of the past; watch out for the commentary team remarking how, “people from faraway villages like Guindy and Adyar have gathered here!” during one of the matches.
Ranjith’s unique path in Tamil cinema, in which he has thrown light on several aspects that other mainstream filmmakers don’t, continues with Sarpatta… With dialogues like ‘Idhu namba kaalam’ (This is our time) and an entire sequence about the need to fight, the director’s stamp is unmissable. He’s helped in this task by cinematographer Murali G and composer Santhosh Narayanan’s background score.
The men in the film might be rough and tough in the ring, but back home, the women prove they are the boss. While Arya’s mother Bakkiyam gets written a one-dimensional character, his love interest Mariyamma (Dushara Vijayan) gets better treatment. After one particularly heated confrontation, she instructs Kabilan, “I’m starving. Come and feed me,” and the two proceed to make small talk. It’s a quiet little moment in an otherwise loud film. It reminded me a little of the Rajinikanth-Huma Qureshi moment in Kaala, and is the reason I look forward to Ranjith’s next, which is reportedly a full-fledged love story.
Sarpatta Parambarai is currently streaming on Amazon Prime Video
Sarpatta Parambarai Review: Pa Ranjith’s Sports Drama Comes All Guns Blazing
Sarpatta Parambarai Review: Arya dominates the show with a performance that aptly combines tough physicality and psychological fragility.
Sarpatta Parambarai Movie download
Cast: Arya, John Kokken, Kalaiyarasan, Pasupathy
Director: Pa Ranjith
Rating: 3 stars
Sarpatta Parambarai Movie download Pa. Ranjith’s new Tamil film Sarpatta Parambarai, streaming on Amazon Prime Video, comes out all guns blazing. It is a sports drama all right but there is more to the epic narrative than just gloved men trying to outpunch each other in a boxing ring. Despite its struggles with consistency of pace and tone, the film delivers many a punch that finds its mark.
The screenplay, production design and propulsive soundscape serve to create a socio-political and cultural ambience that lends the film’s underdog-fighting-all-odds story the shape and scope of an intriguing and enlightening period chronicle even as it plays out on largely familiar genre lines.
Sarpatta Parambarai vivifies a 1970s North Madras milieu in a strikingly effective manner, in the process transporting the audience back in time to a space and culture with its own unique rhythm. From scene one – a Madras Port loader itches to get away from work because a boxing event is about to get underway and he cannot afford to miss the action – the film plunges into the story of clans who once fought tooth and nail for supremacy.
Sarpatta Parambarai tends to be loud, the drama is out of its hinges at times, and the arc of the principal character, Kabilan (Arya), takes a course that may not be full of surprises. Yet, there is an abundance of riches in Sarpatta Parambarai because Ranjith’s directorial flair and sense of historical context raises the film, when it is at its best, to a level that average Indian sports films rarely attain.
Embedded in the story are the caste dynamics at play in a segregated part of town, the political upheavals of the mid 1970s triggered by the imposition of Emergency and the dissolution of the DMK government in Tamil Nadu, and the historical backdrop of the area’s boxing culture. Neither of these plot elements overshadows the essence of the film, which stems from one man’s quest for glory in the face of an unsettling social churn that affects an entire clan as it fights to live down years of defeat.
The story of Sarpatta Parambarai is located four decades ago but its portrayal of people battling oppression and political overreach has a contemporary resonance. “The Prime Minister’s autocracy is degrading our democracy,” says Rangan (Pasupathy), a revered boxing coach and political activist in an address to his clan, which is down and out in more ways than one. His warning is a call to action at multiple levels – the moral, the personal, the physical and the political – for a people up against acts that are aimed at trampling upon their rights.
The only way the Sarpatta clan – coach Rangan and wannabe boxer Kabilan are a part of it, the former its past and latter its probable future – can claw its way back into the reckoning is if they can find a fighter who can stand up to Vembuli (John Kokken), the star boxer of the rival Idiyappa clan, a man who has been winning for three straight years.
Before the chosen man can earn the right to challenge Vembuli, he has to surmount a series of hurdles. The onus falls on Kabilan, an aspiring boxer that Rangan has little faith in. Kabilan, on his part, worships the very ground that Rangan treads on. The young man bides his time.
The young man must work his way up and secure the right to represent his clan in a do-or-die bout. His path his strewn with impediments. For one, his mother Bakkiyam (Anupama Kumar) is dead against Kabilan donning boxing gloves because she believes it was the sport that drove her husband to alcoholism, gang wars and death.
Moreover, Kabilan has to contend with rivals in his own camp – coach Rangan’s son Vetriselvan (Kalaiyarasan) and Raman (Santosh Pratap), who is desperate to reclaim the legacy of a late uncle, who once controlled the Sarpatta clan. What queers the pitch the most is the prospect of being led astray even as success begins to come his way.
The first hour of Sarpatta Parambarai is a breeze – pulsating, pacy and profoundly engaging. This is the part of the film that is devoted to the conflicted Kabilan’s struggle to be accepted as a boxer worth his salt. His progress is slow, the film isn’t. It crackles with raw energy as the male protagonist, tentative and timid to begin with, begins to assert himself and makes headway in a sport that takes a heavy toll on its exponents.
A large part of the second half of the nearly three-hour film is far less convincing as the now-married Kabilan – his wife Mariamma (Dushara Vijayan) is a woman of substance who isn’t going to die wondering what life has in store for her – wrestles with domestic strife and activities that reduce him to an emotional and physical wreck. Mercifully, the final half-hour regains some of the frisson of the film’s first half and helps Sarpatta Parambarai end on a high.
Director Pa. Ranjith, whose focus is on the men in the ring and outside it, but his penchant for creating strong women characters comes to the fore in the portrayal of Mariamma. He takes only a few seconds to tell us what Kabilan’s wife is all about. At the end of a wedding song-and-dance set piece, the newly-wed woman breaks into a wild pirouette before she literally ‘pounces’ on her husband. A honeymoon shot has never been this dramatic: it tells you exactly what to expect from Mariamma. She does not disappoint.
While Arya dominates the show with a performance that aptly combines tough physicality and psychological fragility, Sarpatta Parambarai is filled with characters who do much more than to providing support to the protagonist. They contribute to making the film an effectively composite, vivid tableau.
Among those who stand out in particular are John Vijay as Kevin, a contemporary of Kabilan’s late father and the young boxer’s one-man cheer squad, and Shabeer Kallarakkal as Dancing Rose, a boxer with footwork that could put a ballerina in the shade.
Sarpatta Parambarai centres on gruff men having a go at each other with their fists and tongues, but the handful of women in the story do not take a backseat. In the role of Kabilan’s mother, Anupama Kumar has to contend with a limited bandwidth but she does not let that weigh her down one bit. As the hero’s harried but irrepressible wife, Dushara Vijayan does not put a foot wrong even when the emotional pitching of the character is in danger of going off-key.