Rating: 3/10 (Disappointing)
Cast: Mahesh Babu, Rakul Preet Singh, SJ Suryah, Bharath, Priyadarshi, RJ Balaji, Jayaprakash, and others
Story-Screenplay-Dialogues-Direction: A.R. Murugadoss
Producer: NV Prasad
Banner: NVR Cinemas
The combination of a superstar like Mahesh Babu and an excellent director in AR Murugadoss joining hands for a film sent expectations to the sky for film lovers, including myself. They joined hands for the Bilingual Spyder, a thriller made with a huge budget of 120 crores. Is this film worth all the hype, sadly it's not. Let's find out why
Plot: When two young girls are brutally murdered, an intelligence bureau officer named Shiva (Mahesh Babu) decides to track down a sadistic serial killer named Bhairavudu (SJ Suryah), who seeks to destroy humanity.
Performances: To say that Mahesh Babu is one of the best actors in India is stating the obvious. But one feels the superstar has not been utilized to his potential in SPYder. Shiva is just another regular character that never rises above the mediocre point on the character graph. As usual, Mahesh delivers a sincere performance and is outstanding in the emotional scenes. His ever reliable screen presence is the biggest plus point of the film.
Rakul Preet Singh looks ravishing in the songs but doesn't have much of a role and is barely there for 10 minutes in regular scenes.
It is SJ Suryah that steals the show. His performance is excellent and he is extremely convincing as a sadistic villain.
Tamil hero Bharath is wasted in a minuscule role. Pellichoopulu Priyadarshi is there but not for comic relief.
The rest of the actors are all Tamil artists and there is no one noticeable.
Direction: AR Murugadoss is one of the best directors in India because he is one director who knows how to mix social messages with the perfect blend of commercial elements. In SPYder however, the top director seems totally out of form. The story is decent but the execution is below par. Investigative thrillers or thrillers need edge of the seat moments or WOW moments and surprisingly in SPYder, you feel that the film has none of these types of moments. For a man used to delivering excellence, one will wonder whether this is a Murugadoss film by the time it's over. It certainly didn't feel like it. Besides a couple of engaging scenes here and there, Murugadoss's writing is illogical and he failed to utilize Mahesh Babu to the full extent and delivers a disappointing product.
Technicalities: Music and BGM by Harris Jayaraj is superb but the SPYder on a mission BGM is over-used. The BGM however, stands out in certain scenes. Cinematography by veteran cameraman Santosh Sivan is flawless. The visuals are very good. Editing by Sreekar Prasad is a joke. The film feels flat at times and 3 songs come within the fist 25 minutes of the film. Art direction is very good for the climax fight. Dialogues by Murugadoss are excellent in the interrogation scene. Fights by Peter Heins were much hyped and they fail to deliver. All the action sequences are lackluster and lack the necessary punch to wow the audience. The VFX work for a film of this budget is certainly of poor quality, especially for the roller-coaster and boulder sequences. Production Values by NV Prasad are poor. To be honest, the film def doesn't feel that 120 crores have been spent on it. The technical output is good, but not of the standards of a pan India film like Baahubali.
+ SJ Suryah
- Villain Flashback
- Ladies Episode
Analysis and Overall: When Bhramotsavam released last year, audiences were in for a torturous experience and it remained one of the worst movies ever made in the Telugu film industry.
To rectify his mistake, Mahesh okayed the script narrated by Tamil director AR Murugadoss and the producers convinced Murugadoss to make it a bilingual with a huge budget. With a huge budget, star director and superstar actor at the forefront, SPYder more often than fails to deliver as a satisfying film.
SPYder is technically a thriller but the way it has been executed will surely disappoint everyone.
The film starts off in a nice manner introducing Mahesh and his job and he is introduced within a simple manner and then a fight sequence is cut short for the song Boom Boom. Then we are immediately introduced to Rakul and then we have Achcham Telugandham song right after. This is all in the span of 10 minutes.
Then the story starts to get interesting and then Mahesh learns about the villain's flashback. This flashback is repulsive, frightening and full of Tamil flavor which may not go down well with the Telugu audience. The roller coaster fight follows and it's underwhelming and unrealistic.
Bhairavaudu's introduction sparks some life into the film once again and the interval bang is decent. Once the 2nd half starts, we are treated to some more mind games between the hero and villain and then Mahesh gets injured with an iron rod going through his body and then he is taken to the hospital but he somehow still has the accuracy and energy to shoot the villain! Ridiculous.
After the hospital sequence, Mahesh must track down the villain so he uses a game show sequence with women watching serials and motivates them to save people being held hostage by the villain. This sequence is beyond logic and just stupid. This lasts for nearly 20 minutes.
The interrogation scene is probably the best scene in the movie with excellent dialogues taking the center stage. But the scene if highly reminiscent of The Dark Knight scene between Batman and Joker. The boulder scene is of poor quality and highly unrealistic and the climax is ok with a very forced message at the end. The graphics in the film make you question whether they actually spent 120 crores on such a project.
Murugadoss has taken too many cinematic liberties in SPYder and this plays the spoilsport. The film is highly unrealistic and most of the sequences don't excite. This is perhaps his weakest work till date. Despite having a star like MaheshBabu at the helm, one feels he has failed to deliver the goods this time.
One would definitely feels a film of this caliber doesn't require a star like Mahesh Babu and Shiva is easily a replaceable character. SPYder could prove to be another costly mistake of Mahesh Babu's judgement.
Overall, SPYder is an underwhelming and disappointing film from AR Murugadoss and Mahesh Babu. Besides Mahesh and SJ Suryah, this movie is illogical and barely has any exciting sequences or moments. The movie has a lot of Tamil flavor which may not go down well with the Telugu audience. Watch it only if you're a die hard fan of Mahesh Babu.