Beyond the fact that its titular character suffers from night blindness, the film doesn't have anything significant to offer
Last Updated: 04.11 PM, Apr 16, 2022
Two college sweethearts Teja and Neelima part ways when the latter is forced to marry Rahul, the match chosen by her parents. Meanwhile, Rahul, who was in a relationship with a girl Heli in the past, is keen on moving on and starting life on a new slate with his wife. Yet, the bitterness of not being able to marry the man of her dreams consumes Heli. A Madanapalli native, Sebastian, a cop with night blindness, after a series of transfers across the state, is posted in his home town at last. What connects Sebastian to Teja, Neelima and Heli? Will night blindness prove a handicap in his career growth?
There's no better proof than Sebastian PC 524 to suggest that one trait of a protagonist can't drive an entire film. Time and again, the makers of this cop drama have used the night blindness angle in the cop's character as a promotional tool but there's nothing to the film beyond his condition. The story about how a cop with night blindness cracks a murder mystery is a yawnfest sans any emotional connect, logic or purpose. It's evident that debutant Balaji Sayyapureddy has taken a cue from filmmaker Maruthi on utilising a protagonist's psychological/medical condition in a humourous light.
Kiran Abbavaram, who made a terrific, understated debut with Raja Vaaru Rani Gaaru and followed it up with a massy SR Kalyanamandapam, has made a smart choice to do an unconventional cop drama this time. (If only his intent could deliver a good film!) The idea of how a cop overcomes his limitations and makes progress in his career warrants interest initially though the writing is subpar. The first-time director struggles to keep the narrative afloat after establishing the basic premise. The film neither has the bite of an arresting murder mystery nor the wit of a quality crime comedy.
Sebastian PC 524 is very superficial in its attempt to discuss night blindness. There's no effort to understand the practical difficulties of the protagonist and the condition is used as a fancy tool for comic effect. Sometimes, it's also an excuse to amplify the melodrama to a new level together. Sebastian and his mother worry about night blindness as if it's a stigma in society that everyone would judge them for. The mother and the son even pack their bags to a new town after one of Sebastian's friends comes to know of his condition. What exactly was the team thinking?
Sebastian, the character, takes the illegitimate route to land a job as a cop but preaches morals later about the system failing everyone and letting criminals escape scot-free. That no colleague of the cop across various branches could not spot that Sebastian had night blindness after all yes is laughable, to say the least. The sequence of Sebastian sleeping through the night locking the police station and being woken up by his superior is another instance to show prove how the makers take the audience for a ride.
If you think the first hour is a yawn-fest, (don't) wait for the latter half to experience something worse. The climax where the culprit behind the murder is revealed has zilch impact and absolutely no shock value. It's as if the team had given up on the film midway and tried to complete it by hook or crook. Kiran Abbavaram's passionless dialogue delivery never lets us empathise with his character or his condition. The acting is horrendous in most instances. If there's someone genuinely working towards a performance, it's Srikanth Aiyyangar (particularly entertaining when he repeats the words 'Saami Saranam')
The female leads Nuveksha and Komalee Prasad have prominent roles but the director doesn't give enough nuance to the parts to extract any meaningful performance from them. The other supporting actors including veterans Surya, Rohini besides Adarsh Balakrishna deliver bland performances. Ghibran's music doesn't pass muster this time apart from a few sparks. Raj K Nalli's unconventional use of lighting creates interest in a few instances but there's nothing much in the film to showcase his worth.
Don't take Sebastian PC 524 and his night blindness seriously. For once, you wish you had night blindness as an excuse to escape seeing this film at the theatres. The cop drama is a major misfire for Kiran Abbavaram and there are no two things about it.