4 September 2009 | vik_chav
Solid piece of 90's film-making!
Last week, I just happen to rediscover this film directed by Mahesh Bhatt and I must confess that I still can't get the film out of my mind. To me, it's a solid piece of 90's film-making in India. The film is loosely based on the film Scarface (1983) which was directed by Brian De Palma and was written by Oliver Stone. Though, the similarity between the two films is just restricted to the 'rise of a gangster' part. Saathi, essentially is the story of Suraj (Aditya Pancholi) and Amar (Mohsin Khan) and their friendship which also reminds me of Sholay's Jai and Veeru in a vague manner, especially the earlier part.
The film chronicles the journey of both the friends together from street urchins to petty thieves to life of some serious crime. At a certain point Amar refuses to tread this path of crime and Suraj is hell bent on going on and on. The characterizations of Amar and Suraj also share similarities with Ravi and Vicky respectively from Bhatt's previous film Naam (1986), incidentally written by Salim Khan.
The strength of the film lies in its brisk and relentless narrative, good performances and good music. The way Bhatt has used the songs to take the narrative further is also commendable. Every song adds up to the narrative in its own way despite of there being six songs in the film. 'Yaarana Yaar Ka', 'Aisa Bhi Dekho Waqt Jeeven Mein Aata Hai' and 'Zindagi Ki Talash Mein' are among the best of the songs in the film.
Aditya Pancholi's Suraj and Mohsin Khan's Amar balance each other quite well. Aditya's reckless, impulsive and nervous portrayal of Suraj is one of the actor's best till date. Mohsin's mature, restrained and underplayed interpretation of Amar compliments Suraj quite well. The highlight of the film is the scene where Suraj goes way out of control and shoots the policeman who was responsible for his father's death.
The explicitness of violence and drugs portrayed in the film is typically 80's-early 90's which was very much required by the film to make its point regarding connections between poverty, crime and class conflict.