Lens: An Honest Gripping Adult Thriller
Movie Review by Anirudh Madhav (Rocheston Certified Movie Critic)
Whistleblower Edward Snowden’s conscience is known to have awakened when he witnessed his colleague engaging in voyeurism through a hacked laptop camera. While Edward dealt with the broader topic of cyber security and privacy, Lens narrows down into the subject of voyeurism, the consequences and its impact in the society.
Written and directed by Jayaprakash Radhakrishnan, Lens goes on to narrate the tale of a porn addict who is brought to his toes by a hacker who needs a disturbing favor. Just as Arvind, played by Jayaprakash Radhakrishnan seeks to end his confrontation with the hacker, his dark secrets return to haunt him.
Shot in short film style, every character in Lens is as realistic as it gets. Arvind (Jayaprakash) is an ordinary man who Skype calls a woman every night and is uninterested in his wife Swathi (Misha Ghosal). The hacker Yohan (Anand Sami) perfectly fits the role of a terrifying psycho who manages to creep out Arvind as well as the audience.
Even as the first half of the film makes us feel sorry for the vulnerable Arvind, we are transported into the perspective of Yohan in the second half. Yohan’s (Anand Sami) back story with his wife Angel (Ashwathy Lal) brings in some light moments with a romantic soundtrack and the movie moves into a complete gritty narrative from thereon. The similarities between Amanda Todd suicide video (released in YouTube) and a sequence featuring Angel before her suicide are hard to ignore.
Director Jayaprakash has played with his camera in capturing sexual sequences without any vulgarity. Cinematographer S.R Kathir does a brilliant job of capturing the scenes featuring video chat between the characters, making it as realistic as possible.
The magic of the film lies in the fact that it could follow a different narrative if the story was told from the perspective of the hacker Yohan. Though Lens might not appeal to the audience for its lesser-known cast and multi-lingual dialogues, the film is packed with several messages, making it a must-watch for adults.