In the midst of a shoot-out, Shraddha Kapoor asks Prabhas, "Kaun hain yeh log?" To which he replies, "Fans". When she probes him further as to why they are so violent, the man calmly quips, "Die-hard fans'! Well, you actually need to be one to ignore the lazy writing and editing of his latest release, 'Saaho'.
The film begins with an introduction to a fictional place called Waji City where the future of a crime syndicate is at stake after the death of their boss. No one can be trusted as there are deceit and treachery in the air to usurp the throne.
Meanwhile, some high-stake robberies take place in Mumbai. The police department assigns an undercover cop Ashok Chakravarthy (Prabhas) to solve the case. However, as secrets tumble one after the other and a connection is established between the robberies and Waji City, we realise that there's more to this than meets the eye.
The makers had dropped the first glimpse of this film when Prabhas's 'Baahubali: The Conclusion' hit the theatrical screens in 2017. Since then, there was a lot of anticipation built around this film. And why not? It promised to showcase our 'Baahubali' man in a never-seen-before avatar and marked the south debut of Bollywood's leading lady, Shraddha Kapoor.
Sujeeth's ambitious vision collapses under the weight of its weak screenplay. The film begins on a promising note but, soon derails when he tries to induce in too many twists and turns. With all the attention towards making the film a grand visual, the writing takes a backseat. By the time, the director tries to tie up the loose ends, it's just too late.
Speaking about the performances, Prabhas makes a swashbuckling entry in the film. While his towering screen presence and swag is one of the plus points, the actor looks a tad awkward while mouthing his Hindi voice.
While Shraddha Kapoor gets ample screen-space in this Prabhas starrer, Sujeeth's weak characterisation plays a major spoilsport for her. One minute she's a tough-talking cop, the other minute she's a damsel-in-distress.
It's refreshing to watch the evil side of Chunky Pandey on the big screen and the man does make you shudder with fear. Neil Nitin Mukesh pulls off whatever his role demands. Jackie Shroff and Arun Vijay end up with poorly sketched characters. The rest of the cast including Mahesh Manjrekar, Mandira Bedi and others put up a decent act.
High sky-scrapers, explosions, action sequences, picturesque locations - R. Madhi's cinematography perfectly presents them as larger-than-life on the big screen. Kenny Bate's stunt choreography adds the thrills to the film. However, the VFX does go a little hotchpotch at places.
One of the biggest disappointments of 'Saaho' is its music. Barring 'Psycho Saiyaan' (which strangely has been changed to 'Kaiko Saiyaan' in the Hindi version), the rest of the tracks are randomly placed and only add to the film's runtime. A Sreekar Prasad's editing should have been tauter, which could have prevented the film from being an exhausting affair.
Prabhas jumps off skyscrapers, flies off the cliff, mows down beefy, bad guys and remains unscathed. Unfortunately, our desi Superman ends up facing defeat at the hands of a mediocre screenplay and direction, who turn out to be the main villains in 'Saaho'. I am going with 2.5 stars.