A suave taut thriller

Game
Kannada (U) ¬¬¬
Cast: Arjun Sarja, Manisha Koirala, Asqa Bhatt, Neha Saxena, Shaam
Director:  A M R Ramesh

Known for his penchant of providing stylised crime thrillers, inspired by real life incidents, director A M R Ramesh (Cyanide, Attahasa) is back with Game, Kannada-Tamil (Oru Melliya Kodu) bilingual fare. The film majorily resembles 2012 Spanish psychological suspense flick The Body (El Cuerpo) by Oriol Paulo.

The film, however, follows familiar pattern of Spanish original, wherein a corpse mysteriously disappears from the city morgue. This leads to summoning of police officer to investigate the case of missing body. As usual needle of suspicion falls on woman’s husband. While Spanish film is noir genre cinema, Ramesh’s Game with its taut and gripping screenplay, is aptly tailored to suit the Indian audience’s palate.  Of course, comparisons are odious, for Spanish flick scores high on cinematic front.

How, no-nonsense, smart cop Sharath Chandra (played by Arjun Sarja seen in Ramesh’s earlier Attahasa), unravels the truth — whether high profile lady Maya, has been murdered, is it a case of catalepsy, or case of drunken driving, hit and run, behind it, forms the fulcrum of eerie and edgy Game set in specially constructed forensic lab.

The film, which boasts of a surprising twist in the climax and a subtle message, has all trademark Ramesh’s style of film making. Embellishing it with background score is maestro Ilayaraja, his 1000th film, while fluent cinematography by Krishna Sriram also adds to mood and atmosphere.  Arjun Sarja essays his role with composed and assured elan. Yes, folks, Game is afoot.

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