Directors: Swaroop RSJ
Cast: Naveen Polisetty, Shruti Sharma, Ravi Varma, and others
Other then Chiranjeevi’s Chantabayyi (1986), Rajendra Prasad and Vamsi’s Chettu Kinda Pleader, and among the more recent ones, the Vishal-starrer Detective — which was inspired by none other than Hollywood’s (Warner Bros) Sherlock Holmes franchise — all of which performed rather impressively at the box office, Telugu cinema has not seen many noteworthy detective fiction comedies. Telugu actor Naveen Polisetty’s Agent Sai Srinivas Athreya happens to be the next in line in the said genre — certainly one to make note of.
Naveen Polisetty, who became immensely popular as an AIB artiste and has also appeared in films like 1 Nenokkadine and Life Is Beautiful, has now returned as a detective in the comedy thriller, which happens to be Swaroop’s debut directorial.
Agent Sai Srinivasa Athreya (Naveen Polisetty) is a Nellore-based private detective who is mostly jobless, other than the occasional cases of theft which he takes up with his assistant Sneha (Shruti Sharma). One day, however, while investigating an unidentified dead body near a railway track, a police inspector ends up taking him into custody as a suspect. Athreya encounters an old man in his jail cell who explains to him that his daughter had gone missing and provides three phone numbers to him which he could presumably use to track his daughter.
With some help from a reporter friend, Athreya manages to secure bail after which, he and his assistant Sneha begin digging into the case of the missing woman. Strange occurrences follow as one case leads to another, thereby embellishing the film’s plot with the various twists and turns that ensue. Debutant director Swaroop has put together the film quite meticulously. The first 30 minutes of the film are spent establishing Naveen as a private detective and Sneha as his assistant.
The story starts on a light, slightly humorous note, but takes a serious turn after the agent’s arrest in the murder case. The plot becomes especially gripping after the detectives start investigating the woman’s murder, which leads to the uncovering of a scam and much more thereafter.
The film’s makers claim the story to be fiction but based on true incidents, so full marks to Swaroop for such a realistic portrayal of his adaptation.
As far as performances are concerned, Naveen Polisetty has done a phenomenal job with his dialogue delivery and near-perfect body language. Shruti Sharma, too, has done a decent job as Naveen’s assistant in the film. The actors in the supporting roles were mostly newcomers but have all presented undoubtedly praiseworthy performances. The film’s background score — provided by K. Robin — does accentuate the value of its every frame, especially when coupled with its outstanding cinematography. In a nutshell, Agent Sai Srinivasa Athreya seems to have come to the Telugu audiences as a breath of fresh air. It’s indeed reassuring to learn that young talent is making its way into Telugu cinema with innovative subjects and story ideas. Other than a few loopholes — almost a negligible amount — the film is definitely a must watch!