Saattai poster.jpg
Directed byM. Anbazhagan
Written byM. Anbazhagan
Produced byJohn Max
Prabhu Solomon
CinematographyM. Jeevan
Edited byR. Nirmal
Music byD. Imman
Shalom Studios
Distributed byPhoto Factory (P). Ltd
Release date
  • 19 September 2012 (2012-09-19)

Saattai (transl. Whip) is a 2012 Indian Tamil-language drama film written and directed by M. Anbazhagan. The film features Samuthirakani and Thambi Ramaiah in pivotal roles.[1] The film's soundtrack and background score were composed by D. Imman. The shooting took place in NLC and Thiruvannamalai. The film is the first installment of the film series and was followed by a spin-off, Appa (2016), and a sequel Adutha Saattai (2019).[2] The movie was officially remade in Kannada in 2020 as Drona.[3]


Dayalan (Samuthirakani) is a newly appointed teacher of a government school in Vanthaarangudi village near Thiruvannamalai city. He is unhappy with the education system and is also worried about the pitiable condition of education of government schools. After joining the school, he tries to change the school's environment. This is not welcome by Singaperumal (Thambi Ramaiah), who is Assistant Head Master (AHM). Dayalan's decision for the change does not go well with the other teachers and students, but his good moves were slowly noticed by Pandian (Junior Balaiah). Slowly, Dayalan gets popular among the class students. In between, there is love between Pazhanimuthu (Yuvan) and Arivazhagi (Mahima Nambiar). Pazhani's father is also a teacher in the same school. Singaperumal was waiting for a turn to take revenge on Dayalan. In these situation, Arivazhagi was sexually abused by somebody. Singaperumal files a case against Dayalan as a culprit. After Arivazhagi opens the statement to the police that another teacher is her abuser, Dayalan was released. Dayalan organizes an inter-school competition between schools. Dayalan's school gets first place because of Arivazhagi's and Pazhani's hard work. After that, Dayalan gets attacked by mobs arranged by Singaperumal. Dayalan gets admitted in the hospital. All of the students and teachers go to the hospital to see him and they were denied to see him by the hospital authorities as he is in very critical condition. Then arrives his wife and inspires the students to study for the coming exams. Students study well and they top their district, and the movie ends with Dayalan giving the responsibility of HM to Singaperumal, who reforms and apologizes to him. The movie ends with Dayalan going to the next village to reform another government school.



Soundtrack album by
Released14 January 2012
GenreFeature film soundtrack
LabelSony Music India
ProducerD. Imman
D. Imman chronology
Manam Kothi Paravai

The music for the film is by D. Imman. Yugabharathi has penned the lyrics.[4]

1."Jada Jada Jaada"Ramesh Vinayagam, Sai Venkat, Haripriya04:08
2."Sahaayane"Shreya Ghoshal04:16
3."Andhurundai Kannazhagi"Chitty, Thanjai Radhika, Srik04:32
4."Adi Raangi"Santhosh Hariharan, Anitha Karthikeyan04:22
5."Nanbaa Vaa Nanbaa"Saisharan04:02
6."Dayas Insight"Elisabeth Mani03:25
7."Serene Grace"Priya Himesh04:01
8."Sahaayane (Karaoke Version)"Instrumental04:16
9."Adi Raangi (Karaoke Version)"Instrumental04:16


The satellite rights of the film were sold to STAR Vijay.[5]

Critical reception

Sify's critic described the film as a "decent entertainer which harps loudly on the message it wants to convey", noting that director M Anbazhgan "has neatly worked the film around [Samuthira]kani’s character but at times it becomes too preachy and sentimental".[6] M. Suganth from The Times of India gave it 4 out of 5 and claimed that Saattai was a "commercial potboiler dressed up as arty fare". The reviewer further wrote: "Anbazhagan's intentions are quite commendable [...] but the sad thing is that he goes about this task with less subtlety and more sermonizing, with the result that the scenes where he wishes to make a point come across as totally preachy".[7] Similarly, Malathi Rangarajan from The Hindu wrote: "The aim is lofty, the theme, noble. It is in execution that director Anbazhagan falters a little". She concluded that the film was "at times obviously sermonising" but "still [...] worthy of notice".[8] Behindwoods's reviewer gave it 2 out of 5 and noted: "The preachy dialogues in the film are what students listen to in real life. This is probably why the film fails to make the intended impact as there is nothing out of the box".[9]


Main article: Adutha Saattai


Main article: Appa (2016 film)

In September 2015, Samuthirakani chose to postpone the production of his Kitna, after the lead actress Dhansika got an offer to appear in Pa. Ranjith's Kabali (2016). He chose instead to use his time directing and producing a sequel to his earlier film, Saattai (2012), and revealed that the film would be titled Appa.[10] He revealed that the film would bear no resemblance to the first film, but would be a spiritual sequel and would revolve around the education system like the previous film. He initially approached Anbazhagan to direct the film, but the director's commitments to making Rupai produced by Prabhu Solomon, meant that Samuthirakani directed the film himself. Samuthirakani also revealed that the film's plot line had been taken from a real-life incident, which happened when choosing a school for his son.[11]


Ceremony Category Nominee Result
2nd South Indian International Movie Awards Best Actor in a Supporting Role Thambi Ramaiah Nominated


  1. ^ "Samuthirakani's 'Saattai'". IndiaGlitz. 7 June 2011. Retrieved 21 September 2012.
  2. ^ "Saattai". Times of India. 21 September 2012. Retrieved 21 September 2012.
  3. ^ "Drona Movie Review: This commercial film gets too preachy at times".
  4. ^ "Audio Beat: Saattai". The Hindu. 8 September 2012. Retrieved 21 September 2012.
  5. ^ "Saattai Movie on Star Vijay". The Times of India. 1 November 2015. Retrieved 6 December 2015.
  6. ^ "Movie Review : Saattai". Sify. Archived from the original on 9 March 2014. Retrieved 15 May 2013.
  7. ^ Suganth M (21 September 2012). "Saattai movie review". The Times of India. Retrieved 18 June 2013.
  8. ^ Rangarajan, Malathi (22 September 2012). "Saattai: Cracking the whip differently". The Hindu. Retrieved 15 May 2013.
  9. ^ "Saattai Review". Behindwoods. 3 September 2012. Retrieved 15 May 2013.
  10. ^ "Samudrakani's Next, 'Saatai 2'". The New Indian Express.
  11. ^ Only Kollywood. "Samuthirakani confirms directing Saattai 2". Only Kollywood.