Ratsasan has a length of almost 3 hours. And guess what? You won’t feel like the movie is becoming overlong. Every time the movie goes towards further development of the plot, you sort of gets intimidated by what could possibly make things worse and the movie offers one more gripping episode to the tale. Even though it has flaws, watching Ratsasan almost feels like watching a crime thriller series.
Arun, an aspiring filmmaker is forced to join the police force after the family needed an income. In the first case, he happened to witness officially, had to do with a serial killer. His research for crime thrillers helps him in identifying the involvement of a serial killer in those murders. But things go really bad for Arun when the venomous villain becomes a major headache as the number of killings got increased. How he eventually closes the case is the content of Ratsasan.
Ramkumar starts off the movie as a story about as an aspiring filmmaker and very quickly and not entirely convincingly he makes our hero an SI. In the assistant director chapter he sort of mentions the demands of producers to spice up scripts and ironically we can see some moments of spicing up in Ratsasan. The second and third act of the movie is really long and the tension it manages to build is really genuine and chilling. Even when the serial killer gets exposed there are furthermore things to be explored and that just magnifies the intensity of the horror. Even when the movie gets slightly derailed by the cheesy backstory of the antagonist, there are enough moments of utmost tension to make you applaud for the movie.
Vishnu Vishal as Arun was really good. The persistence Arun shows in the movie is a difficult one to portray. A slight mistake can make it look like an annoyance rather than perseverance and in my view, Vishnu managed to balance it nicely. Amala Paul’s Viji isn’t an extensive character, but thankfully it wasn’t an unnecessary character for the hero to romance. Actor Ramadoss delivers an exceptional performance as the father of a 15-year-old girl. The actor who performed the role of the teacher also deserves a special mention.
Ramkumar knows how to cover up the compromises or the ingredients he had to include deliberately to please the masses. Like I said, in the beginning, the nearly three-hour-long movie never becomes an exhausting experience. It is almost like watching back to back episodes of a crime series drama. The way this movie’s antagonist part becomes darker and rude in a fine pace is one reason why we get invested in the narrative and the screenplay has managed to keep things under control in that tricky phase. The cinematography plays with the shadows and lighting skilfully to maintain the intriguing ambiance. The background score that sort of reminded me of the docking scene BGM from interstellar plays an integral role in building the anxiety.
Ratsasan is a movie that will give you chills through its detailed and layered plot points. From the villain’s less authentic prosthetic makeup to some of the humor and romance that gets squeezed in, there are problems in the movie. But the way everything eventually adds up to the story makes us forget about those flaws.
The nearly three-hour-long movie never becomes an exhausting experience. It is almost like watching back to back episodes of a crime series drama.
Green: Recommended Film
Orange: Okay, Watchable, Experimental Films
Red: Not Recommended