Cinematographer Nizar Shafi has turned director with Havish-starrer Seven. The film, also featuring Regina Cassandra, Nandita Swetha, Poojitha Ponnada, Tridha Choudhury, Anisha Ambrose and Aditi Arya in pivotal roles, is an investigative thriller that messes with your brains. There’s an interesting premise at the heart of the film, which charts the story of two women -- Ramya (Nandita Swetha) and Jenny (Anisha Ambrose) who lodge police complaints about their missing husbands.
After speaking to them, the alcoholic cop, ACP Vijay Prakash (Rahman) conjectures that both of them are on the lookout for the same person, Karthik (Havish). Another woman, Priya (Tridha Choudhury) comes up with a similar (husband) missing complaint and this increases Prakash’s resolve to catch Karthik. However, the cops are in for a shock when a mentally ill old man claims that the person they were searching for has died a few years ago.
Meanwhile, Prakash survives an attempt on his life by Karthik. Refusing his subordinates’ theory that Karthik is a spirit/ghost and insisting that he is a fraudster, Prakash gets on a mission to track him down before the victim count increases.Despite giving us an intriguing plotline, Shafi and writer Ramesh Varma fast run out of ideas to keep us hooked. The twists in the film unfold a little too lazily for its own good. In the second hour, the director turns what could have potentially ended up as a riveting thriller into a bland one.
The script dally with themes of obsession, psychopath and the consequences of one’s action, but when you think you have figured out the twist, the carpet is pulled under your feet to unfold another twist. Still, it’s not a gripping investigative thriller owing to the perfunctory treatment which betrays the rawness in the story. Every dialogue uttered by the characters, especially in the second hour, promises a big reveal, but the performances, sadly, are not up to the mark.
But to give credit where it’s due, the story does have some unintentionally amusing yet interesting moments. There are echoes of David Fincher’s The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, and the recurrent nature of the back story reminds us of several films with reincarnation themes. Yet Seven is nothing like those as it will never succeed in spooking you out due to excessive melodrama.
Although Nizaf Shafi failed as a director, his cinematography lends an edge-of-the-seat feeling to the proceedings. Chaitan Bharadwaj’s songs and score make us feel the spooky vibe to an extent.
Havish seems ill-equipped to tackle the role of Karthik.
He is blank in the emotional scenes but fares quite well in the love scenes. He definitely needs to reinvent himself as an actor. Regina Cassandra and the woman who played her older part steal the thunder and keeps that character real. Rahman is convincing as the manipulative cop who’s on the go to solve the mystery behind the events.
For the most part, Seven is a moody investigative thriller with a lot of logical loopholes that undoes all the good owing to its unenthusiastic narrative.
Cast: Rahman, Regina Cassandra, Nandita Swetha, Havish
Rating: 2/5 stars