Connect Movie Review
The collaboration of filmmaker Ashwin Saravanan and actress Nayanthara in ‘Maya’ was a fabulous spell. The film turned out to be one of the most spellbinding flicks under the category of ‘Best Supernatural Thrillers of Indian Cinema’, with a new-fangled non-linear premise and gripping screenplay. The filmmaker’s second outing ‘Game Over’ with Taapsee was a decent one but didn’t score brownie points as with his directorial debut. The filmmaker now steps up with his third directorial outing titled ‘Connect’ starring Nayanthara, Sathyaraj, Vinay Rai, Haniya Rafisa, and Anupam Kher in the titular characters.
Before kick-starting the analysis, we need to be aware that ‘Lockdown or Pandemic’ has become the latest one to join the list of genres (Maybe, the cherry-pick for Netflix and other platforms that have created a wide array of genres like Neighborhood, Crisis, Friendship, and more).
The Lockdown season has teased the minds of writers and directors to come up with unique and new-fangled plots, which was once considered a first-of-its-kind presentation. It all started with Fahadh Faasil’s C U Soon followed by the recent Malayalam release ‘Gold’ starring Prithviraj and Nayanthara in the lead roles. A limited budget, limited characters, and a quarantined format. ‘Connect’ is yet another inclusion in this genre, but with a difference. Decades back Stephen King’s Blairwitch Project took us with a storming surprise on how a supernatural or spooky thriller could be made with a handheld camera. Years later with the advancement of technology, we have a similar presentation.
The film opens a day before the Lockdown of COVID-19, where a picture-perfect happy family comprising a doctor (Vinay Rai), his wife (Nayanthara), her father (Sathyaraj), and daughter Anna (Haniya) having a great time across the silent breezy shores. In the next few minutes, we are transported to the moments that reminiscences of our doomed days of Lockdown (Our personal lives were indeed a ‘Horror’ tale during those times). Within 15 minutes, we are thrown up with an absolute prologue that openly reveals what the remaining part of the film is all about (Revealing this could be a spoiler). With a running length of 98 minutes, the first 30 minutes are appreciable, and then, you might start feeling the scenes little repetitive. With the arrival of Anupam Kher, the film is back with its momentum.
Yes, when it comes to the premise, this is the first time, we are coming across a horror tale set against the backdrops of a Lockdown phase. Special kudos to filmmaker Ashwin Saravanan! But then, most of the scenes blatantly reminiscences of textbook Horror tales from ‘The Exorcist’ to ‘The Conjuring’. The scenes might give a cliched experience after a certain point in time. However, the top-notch sound experts and the conception of jump scares gives a valuable experience for the novices of the ‘Horror Movie Buffs’ club.
Ashwin’s casting is a big plus. Nayanthara, Sathyaraj, and Anupam Kher with their soliloquy kind of performance facing the camera exhibit their excellent performances. If you’re gonna pick the best among these three, it’s Sathyaraj followed by Anupam Kher and Nayanthara. Haniya is so natural with her performance.
Overall, Connect is a tale that might remind you of many Hollywood horror tales, but still, the theatrical experience loaded with perfect sound and jump scares will enthrall you.
Verdict: Although cliched, the sound and jump scare offers a good theatrical experience.