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A wannabe serial killer film that doesn’t take itself seriously

Saturday, May 2, 2020 • Tamil Comments

Close your eyes and point your fingers at any frame in Netflix’s newly released ‘Mrs Serial Killer’, I can bet you it will be boring. Seriously? Like seriously? Like for real, seriously? Three times for dramatic intrigue, if the film didn’t have it at least this review will. If Covid was 2020’s major catastrophe, one wouldn’t be surprised to use the same comparison of ‘Mrs Serial Killer’ for Indian cinema this year.

The film calls itself a ‘thriller’, but very often times crossed the boundaries of intentional comedy with its ‘over the top’ actors, writing and even set design. The errors are so glaring and as far as the nice things to talk about the movie: we are at a loss for words. And we’re not definitely joking.

You can get better writing out of a sleeping writer than the ones who have written this film. From characters, character-revealing scenarios, situations, plot, and story- everything has been liberally jeopardized.

The film begins with a scene pulled off from the middle where Sona Mukherjee (played by Jacqueline Fernandez) ‘performs’ with a dialogue recital that reminds you of overzealous dramas you would have seen as a child when in school. In another scene, there is Mrs.Mukherjee lamenting about why so many conflicts in her story. We sincerely doubt that the writers had the same thought writing the movie. And no, Jacqueline Fernandez didn’t deserve a fourth-wall break just for this line. And another situation where she displays the same kind of childish exclamation is when she finds out that her ‘to be victim’ is a taekwondo expert. Duh… you’re preparing to be a serial killer… you know that right?

And the makers of the movie probably think that research and logic is a joke as well. We see inspector Imran (who also happens to be Mrs.Mukherjee’s ex-boyfriend) just barging into her home at night, peeing and casually takes stuff from the house, bagging it up to use it as evidence. Did anyone teach him about a term called ‘search warrant’? But here’s the unbelievable reveal- the court accepts it as evidence to indict Mr.Mukherjee. Just wow.

If you are not feeling like having been taken on a stupid ride, wait until the girlfriend-boyfriend characters appear. The girl is Mrs.Mukherjee’s student and has a thing for punk clearly, but also definitely ticks the boxes to be her first victim. Apart from dishing out powerful kicks that sends people flying like birds, she can also stick to walls like a spider in a covert way (Sorry, Spider-man). Definitely somebody has handed over the wrong notes to the stunt people. The drama that goes between her and Mukherjee alone accounts for the majority of the film’s general sense of annoyance.

The sloppy acting follows you everywhere in this film through its underperforming (because they overperformed than required) characters. The exception being Manoj Bajpayee’s portrayal of the serial killer husband slash gynaecologist Dr.Mukherjee. Not because his acting was good, but because you are only confused and unable to judge if he was real good or real worse. Because, in a movie the sum of every other errors, I believe, can deter a good performer’s scenes even more so. By that logic, one wouldn’t buy his acting as well. Actually, it becomes a sort of respite to see him so that you can escape from having to put up with other characters’ performances.

Following the principle of ‘beggars can’t be choosers’ is the right way to approach this film in terms of performances. Darshan Jariwala is another misfit in the movie where he lies around in bed after a severe surgery. But looks like he’s just lying there for the sake of it with no pain(except for the viewer). And how in the world is he able to drive a vehicle at the end of the movie like all that feeling unwell thing was a charade? And even if it was a charade, why did he have to do that particularly? This is mind-bogglingly uncool of the makers to take the viewers for granted. Other characters like the inspector Imran Shahid, the emo styled girlfriend and her boyfriend, and every other person including the extras also provide us nothing to ponder and say ‘okay, at least this person has done a good job’.

Ravi K Chandran has handled the cinematography for the film which is definitely not his best. The awkward, unnecessary dutch angles and the oddity of the camerawork with ‘minimum to no movement’ doesn’t help to evoke a sense of urgency and action that the characters are going through. And it also reminds one more of a cable television approach rather than a cinematic one. The meticulously worked sets, with ‘oh so’ perfect lightings, and symmetrical arrangements only make situations ‘too arranged’ to work out in this wannabe serial killer movie. This is especially noticeable in the climax sequence of the movie.

If you would like something else to blame about the movie, it’s the generic horror background music throughout the film. No, it’s not fear instilling. No, it doesn’t accentuate the drama. But yes, it annoys and makes situations more worse. The background music plays out like an over-excited buddy who wasn’t even invited to the party. And like an uninvited guest, it also tries to compensate by trying too much to impress in the film’s unlikeliest places in the most unlikeliest ways. The climax scene is a perfect example where the serial killer sways to a classical music as he’s also trying cut the victim off. Instead of scaring us, it really gets clownish and stupid.

One could go on and on with more things that went wrong in this dismal film by director Shirish Kunder, but we’d like to end with a final one. In the climax confrontation, the inspector promises a comedy to the real serial killer but goes on stringing along without revealing it. The serial killer gets pissed that the inspector is teasing him too long without revealing the comedy. I want to scream out loud to the serial killer, “Don’t you just get it? The comedy he’s talking about is the film itself!”

Verdict We believe you have better things to do than watch this film.

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