The new Tamil movie Lift, which premiered on Hotstar, is a horror-thriller that ultimately wants to educate people about the level of stress through which techies go through. As a movie, it is a half baked attempt, but if you have an uncle or aunt who thinks two people working in the same MNC will surely know each other, then this movie could well be presented as an intro to them (Almost like those mediocre government ads)
Guruprasad, aka Guru, joins this IT company named AMRAK as a TL. His meeting with the company’s HR Harini becomes a bit awkward because they had seen each other three months back, and the meeting wasn’t a pleasant one. During work, the VP of AMRAK asked Guru whether he could stay back for a little longer to complete a project report. Guru agrees to that, and while he is working late at night, a series of spooky things start to happen, and he also sees Harini, who was trapped inside the records room. The only way to get out is the Lift and what we see in the movie is the efforts of the two to come out of that office.
Well, even Conjuring can be criticized as a movie with familiar beats. I have often felt that the way many horror films are judged is largely based on the kind of jump scares it pulls off successfully during a solo or theatrical watch. On that scale, Lift feels like an average attempt. Even though you can predict the pattern followed by the ghost, certain moments will surprise you. But after a point, this thriller is getting stretched far too much. The anxiety of Guru is no longer giving us any kind of tension as we kind of know what is going to happen. Logically also there are inconsistencies.
Vineeth Varaprasad is trying to cater to a broader audience, and thus the IT life you see in this movie is not really the reality. The movie’s first song has the TL standing behind everyone solving their code problems, high-fiving each other, and distributing tea for his team members (Shankar movie-level ideal hero). Then it abruptly jumps into this night, where all the drama unfolds. Making the Lift a key to the plot is not explored refreshingly. Like any other horror movie, after a series of run-for-your-lives sequences, we get to know who the ghost is, and that story is also in the predictable zone. S. Yuva’s cinematography manages to capture the tension in the atmosphere. The production design is appreciable as well.
Kavin Raj as Guru has a likable charm in his performance in the early parts. Even though the scared version of Guru is utterly different, he isn’t losing the grip over the character. Amritha Aiyer as Harini is more of your typical good-looking heroine. Even though she is getting a fair amount of screen time in the movie, the performance never really felt like a catchy one.
Vineeth Varaprasad’s Lift is not a boring movie. It’s a generic horror film that uses a less explored premise and repeats the same formula. The production design and cinematography definitely make it look interesting, but the writing just can’t create something that will make you curious about the ghost’s intention.
Vineeth Varaprasad's Lift is not a boring movie. It's a generic horror film that uses a less explored premise and repeats the same formula.
Green: Recommended Film
Orange: Okay, Watchable, Experimental Films
Red: Not Recommended