Kee: A Superficial Film Driven By A Perverse Central Character Is Let Down By A Screenplay Devoid Of Suspense
Movie Review by Trijai Nerthi (Rocheston Certified Movie Critic)
Offlate, Tamil Cinema has been actively giving its audience films that are based on the perils of technology and the control it has on the lives of people who use it on a daily basis. P.S Mithran’s Irumbu Thirai achieved this feat by making the perils relatable to the average man and spiking it with a whole lot of tension. Kee sets out with the same mission but it makes is too over-the-top and superficial to feel relatable. The film’s hero isn’t somebody you would trust as he finds himself busy trying to analyze the size of the lingerie the girls he stalks wear. So, with a superficial screenplay and an unlikeable hero, the film slowly slips and takes quite a dramatic fall.
Siddharth (Jiiva) leads a normal life. His family is closely knit. He is busy picking up girls using the mobile-hacking application he develops. His life couldn’t be smoother. Then one day, he crosses paths with Shiva (Govind Padmasoorya), who uses technology to murder and torture innocent people. From hacking into their phones to having their pacemakers malfunction, he is out to take as many lives as he can. But a distraught Siddharth steps in and tries to out-hack his plans to eventually save the day. Whether or not he succeeds in this mission forms the crux of the story.
Kee sets out with an ambition to be a slick and brilliant film that discloses the perils of technology. While this ambition presents with great scope for a thriller film, it’s execution has to relatable and convincing for the idea to be received well by the audience. Unfortunately, though, not even one aspect of the film is relatable. First of all, director Kalees has constructed the central character Siddharth in the most unlikeable manner possible. At a time when Tamil cinema is slowing embracing female-centric films, what good does a character who delivers lines like “Only if you touch her heart will she let you touch her” do? Why is Shiva the only villain in the film? Yes, Shiva uses technology to murder innocent people. But Siddharth too uses technology to stalk women virtually. So, why is one painted to be the hero and the other the villain? When this by itself is unclear, it is impossible for you to connect with the rest of the things that happen in the film.
Even if you do manage to look past Siddharth’s perverse behavior, there isn’t much else that the film offers you. For example, the film lazily uses technology as an excuse to cover up plenty of logical loopholes in the film. Siddharth close friend disappears, their life is endangered and yet he is never shown to care. What could be the reason behind this? The technology of course. The writers cook up so many tales based on the perils of technology that it becomes superficial beyond a point. So, all you can do is put your feet up and tiringly sit through the rest of the film where two characters try to out-hack each other in the most exhaustive and suspenseless manner possible.
Jiiva plays Siddu, a hacker who uses his skills to perversely pick up women. When he is not stealthily trying to pick up women using lewd remarks, he is busy trying to out-hack the villain. After a point, you feel bad that Jiiva, an actor who aced his role in the film Ram, is being entrusted with characters whose psyche is juvenile and creepy, to say the least. The actor does whatever he can to ensure Siddu carries at least a little bit of charm but this never happens. As the villain, Shiva, Govind Padmasoorya is a thousand times better than the typical North Indian villain Tamil Cinema introduces you to. He even showcases an earnest set of acting skills but these skills are never tapped into. Even though the entire track of the villain feels letdown, despite not being backed by a proper character establishment, Padmasoorya manages to make you feel a tad intimidated and for that, he deserves a mention. As Diya, Nikki Galrani continues to bore you with her extremely limited acting skills. RJ Balaji does ace a few counter dialogues but he’s definitely played better roles. Playing Jiiva’s father, Rajendra Prasad delivers an immensely over the top performance that couldn’t be more melodramatic.
Vishal Chandrasekhar’s background score in Kee is good but most of the songs don’t play out in the right plays making them feel disjointed to the screenplay. Abinandhan Ramanujam’s cinematography fits the bill, but you can’t help but feel that the cinematographer could’ve tried harder to evoke tension in a few key sequences.
On the whole, Kee is a superficial thriller that tries to cover-up its logical loopholes with the use of technology and a character who is too perverse to be likable. It would do you good to sit this one out.