Telugu360 Rating : 2.5/5
Story (Spoiler Free):
Shiva (Mahesh Babu), a genius call data analyst, works in the Intelligence Department where the public’s communications data (calls, messages etc.) is analyzed to foresee any potential threats to the society. Shiva goes beyond the call of duty and acts on this data to prevent the tragedies before they occur. A tragic mistake results in the gruesome death of two women and drives Shiva to find the killer.
Bhairavudu (S J Surya) was born in a graveyard and grew up amidst the laments of the villages mourning their dead. A disturbing childhood involving multiple deaths molds Bhaiaravudu into a sadistic, psychopathic serial killer who takes immense pleasure as people mourn their dead. The rest of the movie unfolds the drama as Shiva attempts to catch the psycho killer.
Spyder has novelty in terms of villain backdrop and offers some mystery moments in first half. However, when it comes to the narration, Bhairavudu’s childhood episodes are gruesome and off on the nativity. As Shiva digs into the killer’s roots, the film turns into a clue finder. Upon identifying the killer, it then becomes a chase to catch the killer before more tragedies occur. The movie settles in a flat tone for its narration lacking high/low moments. Perhaps a bit of tension relief could have helped. The amusement park fight, the pre-interval episode and a couple much talked about action episodes in the second half show the team’s effort in elevating the hero and villain personas. While the technical values are adequate in these episodes, they fall short on the connectivity and are hence not as effective as expected.
Typically, films falling in this genre interlace a series of mysterious riddles with some emotional thread with a generous number of faux clues and deceit techniques to engage the audience thrown in, while the final act unravels the mystery. At the very end the good triumphs over evil as the hero brings down the villain. This basic structure and the creative alternatives to it are missing.
The first and the biggest complaint that one might have with Spyder is that this is a movie for a new or upcoming actor – at the best for a mid-range hero. It is definitely not a movie that a superstar like Mahesh Babu should have undertaken. In an interview, Mahesh Babu has mentioned that since he doesn’t have a super star image in Tamil Nadu, the hero character has been designed to be that of an upcoming hero. This decision has proved to be very costly in Telugu, as Mahesh Babu’s acting strengths and image are underutilized. It is not a necessity that the star image heroes always play the larger than life roles. We have often seen movies with star image heroes where the script demands them to blend with the background. This is not the case with Spyder and a miss from A R Murugadoss.
Catching the villain is a very crucial thread in any movie. If that villain is a psychopath killer, one would expect a much more exciting execution. Spyder drops the ball on this by having Shiva initiate a saree contest for the ladies who worship their TV serials. As the scene unfolds, one cannot help but wonder if this was the only attempt at comedy in the movie. Even as this episode generates some laughs, one realizes two things: 1. the critical villain catching episode is disappointing and 2. the comedy quotient in the movie is pitiable.
The first two songs Boom Boom, Acha Telugandam are picturized as montage songs and the Haali Haali & Ciciliya songs are good watch for all. Production values are of high standard, producers must be appreciated for spending as much adequate as possible.
In spite of the limited scope for the Shiva role, Mahesh Babu did well. In a couple of songs, he is at his best of looks. S J Surya as Bhairava is a perfect fit for the role, very convincing acting as the psychopath killer. Bharath who played Bhairava’s brother role is Ok. Rakul Preet Singh has a half-baked role. She looked great but definitely underutilized. Pellichoopulu fame Priyadarshi, couple of other character artists are forgettable. The rest of artists make appearances with zero impact.
Spyder is not a wise choice for a subject involving a hero with superstar image and has resulted in pushing the superstar into an uncomfortable zone. Given the team of frontline technicians, highly respected director and the mighty Mahesh Babu, the film Spyder does not live up to the expectations. It is a pretty average fare, might be watchable if you do not expect any high moments or entertainment.
Telugu360 Rating : 2.5/5
Writer & Direction : A R Murugadoss
Producers : N. V. Prasad , Tagore Madhu
Music : Harris Jayaraj
Cinematography : Santosh Sivan
Editing : A. Sreekar Prasad
Production : NVR Cinema
Release date : 27 September 2017