Actress Aishwarya Rajesh is successfully juggling between playing a female lead and headlining films on her own. She has played yet another lead role in Soppana Sundari. The film is about a young middle-class woman who wins a car in a raffle draw which pulls her life into a muddle when multiple individuals compete for the ownership of the car. Actress Aishwarya Rajesh who was last seen in a supporting role in the action thriller drama Run Baby Run is back on screens with her black comedy thriller movie Soppana Sundari in which she has played the lead role. Actor Karunakaran has essayed a vital role in the flick. Story teller S G Charles has written and directed the movie. So, how has the black comedy thriller film Soppana Sundari come out? Is it solid enough to propel actress Aishwarya Rajesh to the success zone, and establish her as a bankable female lead in Tamil cinema? To know that let us get into the movie review.
Soppana Sundari follows the life of Agalya (Aishwarya Rajesh), who is the sole breadwinner of her economically backward family. She lives with her mother Selvi Amma (Deepa Shankar), her bedbound alcoholic father, and mute sister Thenmozhi (Lakshmi Priyaa Chandramouli). In one instance, Agalya gets a call informing her of her win in a lucky draw. She is handed over a car as a prize. The family is pleasantly surprised. But their happiness is short-lived. The car lands them in police station where Agalya’s brother Durai (Karunakaran) tells the cop that it was him who bought the jewelry piece for which the raffle draw took place. But Agalya counters it with the argument saying that it was her who filled the coupon for the lucky draw. The cops tell them who has the bill of purchase will take home the car. Turns out that even Durai does not have the bill as he bought the ornament on behalf of someone else.
Meanwhile, an engaged Thenmozhi was out on a date with her fiancé in that car. On the journey, they hit an old man on the road. Fearing he is dead; they place his body in the boot of the car. Learning that the car is now stranded in the police station Thenmozhi starts to panic. On the other hand, Thenmozhi’s fiancé’s family lays forth a condition that the marriage would take place only if they offer the car as dowry. Durai concocts a plan to steal the bill from the actual possessor. He sends a few men to break and enter the owner’s house to fetch the bill. To his disappointment he finds out the bill is missing. He learns that Agalya is in possession of the bill. He strikes a deal with her to split the proceeds from the car. They agree to produce themselves as the real owner of the bill. Unfortunately, they get caught. What happens to the old man, who gets to have the car in the end, and Agalya manages to pull her family out of this mess, is what makes the rest of the flick.
Tamil cinema hardly gets black comedy films. Very few out of what it gets click well. Soppana Sundari has its inadequacies. But it certainly is not short of entertainment. Story teller S G Charles is picture clear about what he aims to do with his film. It is this clarity in thought and execution that has done a lot of good for the drama. To point one, there were a handful of elements that could have easily been arrayed to extract melodrama to get the sympathy of the audience. But director S G Charles refrains from doing it, and stays loyal to his goal: to entertain. He smartly sets up serious and eccentric situations to create room for dark comedy. For example, the stretch where the entire family operate together to amass money to retrieve the car from police custody to save Thenmozhi’s marriage is brilliantly shaped and is thoroughly amusing. To a substantial degree he succeeds in his effort to build such pockets.
Soppana Sundari unfolds in multiple parallel plots. Every subplot is interesting in its own way. There is a genuine storyline that drives them and does not seem like a lethargic work. This approach saves the film from quickly running out of stream given its wafer-thin story. But unfortunately, it could not prevent it from happening altogether. The unceasing run from one chaos to another gets tired after a point. It is only made shoddy by the unnecessary momentary melodrama that suddenly stresses us to take the film seriously. After making funny plays on complex and sensitive aspects of life, this request does not bode quite well. Fortunately, that is not the end of entertainment in Soppana Sundari as the film once again picks up from its pitfalls, and starts to entertain. And goes on to finish with a satisfying climax.
For an established performer like actress Aishwarya Rajesh, her part Agalya is a walk in the park. The actress pulls off her role effortlessly. She carries the film forward without any difficulty. Actor Karunakaran has put on a show with his humorous expressions and good timing in dialogue delivery. Actress Lakshmi Priyaa Chandramouli’s role has an equal scope as actress Aishwarya Rajesh’s to alter the proceedings. For her part, she lives up to her role. Actress Deepa Shankar does justice to her part. Actor Redin Kingsley makes an impact in his stereotypical role. Actor Sathish Krishnan Menon serves the purpose for which he was brought on board. Actor Mime Gopi is operational. Actress Nakkalites Dhanam is adequate. Actor Sha Ra is functional. Actors Subbu Panchu, Sunil Reddy, Bjorn Surrao, and Thendral Raghunathan, have all chipped in and have done their job well. The rest of the cast has delivered what was asked of them.
On the technical front, music director Ajmal Tahseen’s songs are average, and do not stay in our memory for long. Even musician Vishal Chandrashekhar’s background score is not any special either. He just deploys the stereotypical comical scores for most parts. Cinematographer Balamurugan Vignesh Rajagopalan’s frames are adequate. But his angles and color tone could have been better. Editor K Sarath Kumar has tried his best to work his scissors in ways to improve the work of his colleague.
On the whole, actress Aishwarya Rajesh’s Soppana Sundari offers an exciting ride. It could have made for a solid entertainer had the screenplay been a little tight.