'Nishabdham' started streaming on Amazon Prime on October 1 night. A crime thriller set in Seattle in America, the film has been jointly produced by People Media Factory and Kona Film Corporation. Here is our review:
Sakshi (Anushka Shetty), a mute artist, is in love with Anthony (Madhavan), a celebrated musician. They both go to a haunted villa to take a coveted painting. In no time, Anthony gets murdered by a mysterious force that has been haunting the villa.
It's now up to Maha (Anjali) and Richard Dickens (Michael Madsen) to crack the mystery with the help of Sakshi. But when Maha learns that there was a possessive friend Sonali (Shalini Pandey) in Sakshi's life, things get suspicious. What unfolds next is to be watched in the film.
Anushka delivers an able performance with her apt expressions and body language. She is the shining star of a film with an ensemble cast. Anjali should have been much better, given how much space she gets. Madhavan gets to emote well because the screenplay offers him that privilege. Michael Madsen is interesting, especially with his limp.
Curiously, Shalini Pandey of 'Arjun Reddy' fame, Subbaraju, Srinivas Avasarala and others don't make a mark.
The production values deserve a pat. Shaneil Deo's camera enriches the atmospherics. Girrish G's background music is non-intrusive and non-obvious in the first half, but it becomes too borrowed in the second half. Gopi Sunder doesn't muddy himself, as he is made to deliver only situational or mood-based songs. The production design is a plus, while the VFX department is able.
The premise is solid. Ending Madhavan's character in the initial scenes raises curiosity.
Choosing Seattle as a backdrop proves to be a good pay-off. Had the story been set in a hill station in India, the atmospherics would have looked too routine.
An important character in Anushka's life turns out to be more important as the story progresses. This element was narrated well.
Lack of emotional connect. It is because of the way the scenes have been executed right from the time the investigators enter the scene. Somehow the characters either look too cold or too superficially traumatized.
There is a psychopath or two in the story. But their motives look contrived.
Anushka's character doesn't get elevated properly. It's as if she is not driving the story, although she does it in a major way at one point.
The conversations involving the cops are almost always amateurish.
Our directors need to do a course on how to project serial killings in a chilling manner. Don't rely on the music director to take care of such scenes. Enough is enough.
When it comes to thrillers, it seems our dialogue-writers think anything goes. They don't give a damn about how they are making the lines sound. Like 'V' and 'Penguin', this one, too, suffers from lousy dialogues.
It has been a season of thrillers. After a dud like 'V', 'Nishabdham' was expected to come as the saviour for Amazon Prime. Unfortunately, it gets most of the things wrong.
The film was initially conceived to be a silent thriller. It's not clear director Hemanth Madhukar and screenplay-writer Kona Venkat turning it into a regular thriller proved to be a blunder.