Cast: Ram Arun Castro, Vishnupriya Pillai, Gayathri, Lijeesh, Lingaa
Director: Pavel Navageethan
While dealing with a whodunit, the pieces of evidence, incidents around the murder and clues vital to the case need to be explained to the audience lucidly and unhurriedly while still holding their attention. V1 Murder Case rushes with information and clues without giving one enough time to process it all and establish a meaningful connection between everything. This is where the movie wins and fails.
Agni (Ram Arun Castro), an ex-policeman who gives up his job owing to nyctophobia (fear of darkness) works for the forensic department along with Luna (Vishnupriya Pillai). They come across the mysterious murder case of Narmada (Gayathri) and interrogate every suspect only to find out an unanticipated twist in the end.
The movie takes you into the case instantly after revealing Agni’s medical condition. There were no songs in the film, not even an ‘investigation song’. However, the lack of a soundtrack left the makers with a lot of time to delve into unnecessary sub-plots.
In the end, it felt more like they wanted to kill time instead of running a proper investigation. There’s a long pedophile track which I hoped would go somewhere, but, instead came to an end with an easy cop out of ‘its a medical condition’.
Agni’s wife, who was shot dead by someone random in the past remains unidentified and conveniently forgotten till the end. Why take up these sub-plots if they are of no use to the story?
Pavel has paid great attention to detail, but there is no larger picture in the film or the narrative. The film is focused more on exhibiting how Agni cleverly links the clues instead of paying attention to whether the audience has caught on. If Agni finds an answer to his question, he announces it in a way that only Luna can comprehend and the investigation moves on from there. The audience meanwhile is still waiting to figure it out. And you’re just sitting there believing you’ll understand at least by the end of the film, not wanting to miss out on the next piece of information. To some extent, this worked, but after a point, they lost me.
Sometimes I also felt like Agni just knew too much. Yeah, you’re an “expert”, but how is it that you tend to be right all the time? And to balance it, Luna is always wrong about her findings. She questions every suspect who’s brought in baselessly only to be helped by Agni.
Pavel has undoubtedly managed to pull it off at some points in V1. There are certain scenes in the narrative that have been cleverly worked out — the brown diary sequence and the three-person investigation, for example. That did help bring back the attention the film failed to hold post-interval. Although cliched, I didn’t have a hard time buying the end because of its relevance.
All said, it is difficult for two newbies to hold your attention throughout the movie as well as Ram and Vishnupriya do. They stay true to their characters and perform with ease on screen. It is refreshing that Vishnupriya does not depend on Ram to protect her at any point in the film. She is bold and fierce enough to fight for herself and is upfront with anybody who questions her. Lingaa garners some laughs with his short presence as a principled loafer on screen.
No crime-thriller with an average background score works and V1 Murder Case is proof. I don’t understand how no emphasis was laid on this crucial aspect.
Debutant Pavel’s bullet strikes but loses its momentum half-way through while attempting to justify the genre.
The V1 Murder Case review is a Silverscreen.in original article. It was not paid for or commissioned by anyone associated with the film. Silverscreen.in and its writers do not have any commercial relationship with movies that are reviewed on the site.