What can we say about a killer-thriller which starts with an Alzheimer’s joke? It only gets worse from there, as we are taken through a crime wave in Kasauli which can be stopped only by one rookie cop. And we all know who that is. No police investigation is required to sort out that one.
If you have seen the original Tamil film Ratasasan about a serial killer on the prowl, Cuttputli would look like a bit more of the same. Akshay Kumar who gets an additional song, missing in the original, doesn’t look young enough to play a struggling filmmaker. Akshay’s involvement with the crime scenes is inexplicable. Since he has written a script about a serial killer he is shown to be qualified enough to nab a serial killer who targets school girls.
The prime suspect is a creepy Maths teacher whose modus operandi is to intimidate and sexually violate his helpless students. That he has not been caught and convicted only goes to show we are dealing with a crime capital where the cops are not at their brightest.
The maths teacher ends up dead on the floor and the serial killer is still on the prowl. The storytelling is perched between sensitive and exploitative. Some of the gruesomely tortured bodies of the murder victims seem inspired by real-life crime serials. But the plot never transcends its pulpy intentions.
The last half-hour is particularly problematic with the killer’s past hurriedly revealed to explain the present. The slapdash treatment of the crime denouement is among the many drawbacks in what could have been a sturdy adaptation. Instead, it’s only a servile remake with some scenes looking like they could have done with some serious second thoughts.
The ‘dicky’ sequence where Akshay finds a girl’s body in the back of a car, is milked for melodrama with Akshay and Chandrachur Singh vying for the lachrymose effect. The climax is meant to be nerve-wracking. It just gets on your nerves. To use a young girl as bait to catch the killer without her knowledge or consent is not the smartest method to solve a messy crime.
But then no one is accusing this fairly ho-hum crime thriller of being smart.
Rating: ** (2/5)
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