B. Tech Review: An ambitious effort that handles a bigger issue
A youth-centric film that aims to become a voice of the underdogs and is mostly a technically sound and entertaining watch
Mridul Nair's debut venture B. Tech begins on a very cliched note, happily ticking off every criterion in the 'today's youth' checklist. There are a bunch of young guys who spend hours boozing, pub-hopping (the story is set in Bangalore) and idling around, that when the story takes a serious turn post interval, you are pleasantly surprised. Not that it wasn't unexpected of Mridul and team, but because they dared to take up a very relevant subject and pack it with conviction whilst remaining faithful to the urbane chic genre.
Cast: Asif Ali, Niranjana Anoop, Sreenath Bhasi, Deepak Parambol
Director: Mridul Nair
With a title like B. Tech, you know this one is about a bunch of engineering students, who still haven't completed their course and plan to do so in near future. Their days are spent picking fights inside the campus and nights drinking and merry-making. Well, Anand Subramaniam (Asif Ali) and friends don't exactly belong to the model students mould. Into their gang comes Azad, an orphan from Kerala, with dreams of making it big. But, certain incidents, beyond their wildest dreams, happen, turning their lives upside down.
For many reasons, B. Tech is an ambitious venture that doesn't hesitate to take the untrodden path. Some of it works and some doesn't. While it succumbs to the pressure to play to the gallery, it also doesn't mind pulling a few risks. One of these being Asif Ali's larger-than-life avatar. He sheds his boy-next-door charm, getting into the garb of the thug-rebel mix persona, and the result isn't that disappointing.
B. Tech also deals with an ultra-sensitive topic, that needs to be heard. It doesn't mind being the voice of rebellion. But then, we wish the makers had cut back a few cheesy scenarios in the first half, where campus life is portrayed. Unwanted action sequences, romance and partying scenes could have gone as they don't really contribute much, and only serve to hinder the flow of the narrative.
That said, the director in Mridul deserves a pat for the way he takes forward the narrative in the second half. In a society where religion and prejudices dominate life, this film does its small bit.
Despite a lot of logical flaws, B. Tech rides on its technical strengths. Mridul exercises his directorial skills to the best, with the help of some crisp editing. The background music and good dialogues too make B. Tech an entertaining watch.
Asif Ali does a good job playing Anand, a confused youth, who later on emerges as a hero, while Niranjana Anoop, Sreenath Bhasi and Deepak Parambol do their bits well. Arjun Ashok as Azad too puts up a great performance. However, Aparna Balamurali is wasted in a poorly fleshed out character, playing an inconsequential lover to Anand.
B. Tech is indeed a youth-centric film, that aims to become the voice of the underdogs. It is ambitious and daring, but we wish it had a tighter script with fewer stereotypes. It definitely amounts to an entertaining watch, however.