Production: Axess Film Factory Cast: Amala Paul, Kaali Venkat, Munish Kanth, Vishnu Vishal Direction: Ramkumar Screenplay: Ramkumar Story:Ramkumar Music: Ghibran Background score: Ghibran Cinematography: PV Shankar Dialogues: Ramkumar Editing: San Lokesh
Vishnu Vishal’s career and it also marked the debut of director Ramkumar. The duo comes together yet again for Ratsasan, a crime thriller. The promotional teasers and trailers have been very impressive, setting up good expectations for the film. Has the film lived up to those expectations? Here is our take!
Circumstances force Arun (Vishnu Vishal), an aspiring film director, to take up the job of a Sub Inspector, after his father passes away. His uncle (Munishkanth Ramadoss) helps him get the police job. While Arun faces issues in adjusting to the lifestyle of a police officer, a series of mysterious murders happen in the city, that too of innocent school going girls. Vishnu Vishal comes into the scene and with the resources he has, he sets out to search for the killer. Why is the psycho killer targeting only school girls and whether Arun find the psychopath, forms the rest of the plot.
After seeing a light hearted comedy entertainer in the form of Mundasupatti, this is a major genre shift for director Ramkumar and the young man has done it in style. Ratsasan is honest to its genre and does complete justice with no mishaps. The film’s biggest strength lies in its screenplay that is engaging for most part, especially with a neckspeed second half. That being said, the latter half of the film has many edge of the seat and nail biting moments, giving an intense experience to the viewer. The comfortable staging of scenes, constructively add to the thrill. The twists in the last thirty minutes definitely make the game look much better. Ramkumar’s writing is to the point and even miniscule detailings are explored and showcased neatly. The director has not taken the audience for granted and his smartness is seen when Vishnu tackles the emotions of the killer.
A scene where Sanjana, a school girl tries to escape from the psycho killer is top class, sending chills down the spine for the audience, who’d want the girl to sneak out. Kudos to the entire team for executing that sequence with conviction. We do not get to see many scenes with that intensity, often in Kollywood.
Ratsasan is a competent thriller, for the most part. There is a tautness to the storytelling, especially until the interval block, that keeps us hooked. Even the obligatory romance – Amala Paul plays a teacher whom Arun is smitten by – is quickly wrapped up with a couple of scenes. So much so that even the short romantic song has Arun’s investigation happening in the background.
The narrative does falter in the second half, when a personal loss threatens to steer the film towards melodrama that doesn’t suit this material, but Ram Kumar manages to avoid that pitfall. But he does get indulgent towards the end, drawing out the final act instead of wrapping things up swiftly once the revelation involving the murderer (whose appearance recalls Vikram from Ai) has been made. The backstory is both familiar and unique, but the character of an egoistic superior officer is grating.
That said, the director doesn’t hold back when it comes to violence. And rather than gory visuals, he makes use of editing and music to make us feel the violence. The spooky, almost wall-to-wall score by Ghibran and the tight editing by San Lokesh actually amp up the tension and lend an edge-of-the-seat vibe to the proceedings.