Do you remember Pallikoodam featuring Thangar Bachchaan and Narain? And, the latest one to count – Pasanga, directed by Pandiraj? These are the modern film works based on a school in the Tamil cinema industry. Now, the latest offering to join this rank is the Saattai, directed by director M Anbazhagan. An interesting thing in this movie is that, director Samuthirakani has done the lead role after doing a prominent role in the movie Eesan.
Saattai tracks the story of how a new teacher to a village school puts efforts to improve the education and purpose of the school after rescuing it from the hands of poor management. Dayalan (Samuthirakani) gets the job of teaching students in a village school run by the government. The assistant headmaster (Thambi Ramaiah) of the school dictates terms in the institution, but his primary motive is his money lending business. His harsh punishment to students is also a color to his character. The school students too come as a hard group to manage. Can Dayalan change this place of pure mess into a real education institution?
Saattai, although has an unusual story when compared to the usual commercial flicks, it still has many commercial elements. The director does a good job in balancing these elements in right amount, so that the core of the movie remains unaffected. Another laudable thing in Saattai is the perfect portrayal of the lead role by the director-turned-actor Samuthirakani. His role has shades of the roles played by umpteen numbers of times by MGR and Rajnikanth, but still Samuthirakani manages to give a new dimension to the role of Dayalan on screen.
The movie, however, does not have everything right. Except the lead role, other supporting roles are poorly written by the director. When the movie tries to make a serious point, the scenes turn out to be too preachy and bore the audiences.
Overall, Saattai is a onetime watch, if the flaws do not bother a lot!