Singapore Saloon Review - The film tries to be many things but ends up being nothing!

PUBLISHED DATE : 25/Jan/2024

Singapore Saloon Review - The film tries to be many things but ends up being nothing!

Singapore Saloon Review - The film tries to be many things but ends up being nothing!

Ashwin Ram


PremiseA barber in RJ Balaji's village, played by Lal, inspires him to become a hairstylist by showcasing how a person's character is judged in the way they present themselves in public. The hero takes his passion seriously and works hard for it, how he goes on to become a famous hairstylist forms the remaining story..


Writing/ Direction:

Gokul has created a stamp for silly humor in his previous flicks, he mostly tries the same here. A few jokes work out in the first half, especially the pre-interval bar sequence being the highlight. But there are many comedies that are annoying as well, mainly due to the eccentricity in which the artists perform the purposefully exaggerated situations. The story arc is a much seen one, a middle class person aspiring to be someone big and achieving it, Annapoorani is the recent closest example of the same template. The intent is appreciable, sadly the focus is missing. Particularly, the second half goes haywire when random elements keep taking place without any coherence in the screenplay. The narrative begins as if it's a tale of two friends, then enters into RJ Balaji being continuously ridiculed by his father-in-law, afterwards they show the politics in the saloon community and in the end it becomes a struggle of a homeless community. Like mentioned, the flow is clumsy and lacks clarity of what topic to stress on and what to let loose. Basically, it wishes to be many things but ends up being nothing.



RJ Balaji has tried so hard to pull-off a character which demands a lot of seriousness, but unfortunately he could attain it only to a certain extent. Also playing a hairstylist in the flick, someone could have taken care of his looks too. It is either a love or hate relationship with Sathyaraj’s performance in this movie, you can either laugh out or get irritated. John Vijay’s artificial cool-talk mannerism exists here too. Meenakshi Chaudhary didn’t have much scope, but felt she could have done a better job within the limits. Kishan Das gets a neat full-length supportive role and he does well. Robo Shankar’s specific style of dialogue delivery gets too fake and repetitive on the go. Lal’s character is the core of the story, he has carried it well. Arvind Swami’s special appearance made some sense, while the cameos of Jiiva and Lokesh Kanagaraj are underwhelming.



The technical aspects of the film are completely disappointing. After a series of delightful music albums, the songs of Vivek-Mervin are a major bummer here. Background score hardly adds any value to the presentation. Monotonous framing by Sukumar, clueless why there were many breaking the third wall kind of camera angles for almost all the artists. The film is filled with lags and overstretched scenes, with a runtime of around 140 minutes, it felt like the film was going on for four full hours. Poor visual effects, utter low quality CG shots even for the simplest of elements like rain, shows not only the lethargic work of the VFX companies, but also the production value. Decent setwork by the art director for the Singapore Saloon showroom, where the soul of the film relies.



A worthy storyline to bring on-screen despite the familiar arc and predictable tropes. But the hard to tolerate character behaviors and randomness in the screenplay make it a forgettable flick.


Rating - 2/ 5

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