Though the film is titled Friendship, we hardly get to see any sequence which showcases the depth of their relationship
A still from the film
Story: A few college students are trapped in a false rape and murder case. A leading lawyer takes up their case in the court, but the opponents, who fabricated the case against the youngsters, are quite powerful. Will they get justice?
Review: Directors John Paul Raj and Sham Surya surprised one and all when they roped in cricketer Harbhajan Singh to play the lead in Friendship, which is inspired from Malayalam film Queen. Movie buffs were wondering about the changes the duo filmmakers are going to make to the film with the off-spinner headlining it.
With Harbhajan making an ineffective cameo in the recent Tamil film Dikkiloona, which premiered on Zee5, one wouldn't expect wonders from him with regard to performance. However, since the Mollywood movie, which released more than three years ago, ended up being a decent outing, film lovers would expect him to do justice to the character played by the lead in Queen.
The movie begins with a state minister (Venkat Subha) accusing a few mechanical engineering students, Bhaji (Harbhajan) and his friends, for their involvement in rape and murder case of Anita (Losliya Mariyanesan), their classmate. Bhaji and friends, who are under police custody, are brought to the court where the former's memories switches to flashback mode.
We are introduced to the first year mechanical engineering students undergoing ragging by their seniors. Amid the frequent tiff between juniors and seniors, Anita's joining in the first year batch makes the boys happy as she is the only girl in the classroom. She becomes friends with everyone in no time and her happy-go-lucky attitude makes her a darling among the boys.
However, their happiness didn't last long. Anita's shocking revelation about her health issue leaves them distressed. As if this wasn't enough, Bhaji and friends get the shock of their life when the learn about her rape and murder. A few powerful people who are behind the heinous act comes up with false accusations and frame the students. Shylender (Arjun), a leading lawyer comes to know about the case and bats for them. But he has to take on the crooked Chanakyan (MS Bhaskar) in the court. Will Shylender succeed in getting justice for the students?
From the word go, the audience are detached with the proceedings, thanks to the poor staging of sequences. The lead characters are underwritten because of which we find it difficult to empathize with their agony. Though the film is titled Friendship, we hardly get to see any sequence which showcases the depth of their relationship.
Despite being the protagonist, Harbhajan's characterization lacks basic detailing and the reason for him to join a college in Tamil Nadu isn't convincing. He looks clueless in most of the scenes which feature him. Sathish, as the hero's aide, is okay; a few of his punchlines are enjoyable while the rest falls flat. Losliya of Bigg Boss Tamil fame, who made her debut with the movie, does somewhat justice to her role.
Surprisingly, the character artists shine in the film in the limited space offered to them. MS Bhaskar is flawless as a lawyer with grey shades, and we wish his character had more screen space in the story. Arjun, too, is impressive in the role of a lawyer-cum-vigilante. His screen presence and arguments with MS Bhaskar are the two positive aspects of the movie, but unfortunately, the scene featuring the duo appears only towards the climax.
The technical aspects aren't bad, but with a weak screenplay, there is only little which cinematography and background score can enhance. The duration of Friendship is almost 40 minutes less than Queen, and it reflects in the former's quality.
Verdict: A decent climax which reminds us of Pink is the only engaging sequence in the movie, which otherwise, is ineffective in every way.