Hit- The Second Case: A gripping triumph for Adivi Sesh

Hit- The Second Case: A gripping triumph for Adivi Sesh

Dec 3, 2022 - 10:30
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Hit- The Second Case: A gripping triumph for Adivi Sesh

How to do an engrossing suspense thriller without planting too many red herrings in a plot? In Hit: The Second Case, sophomore writer-director Sailesh Kolanu shows us how. In Telugu, the shudder-providing serial-killer thriller goes easy on the possibilities and focuses on the  actual evidence in the case. This is rare in Indian whodunits which tend to display an array of suspects, the more the merrier.

There is a serial killer on the prowl in Visakhapatnam. He likes to disembody women and mix ‘n’ match their body parts. He could just as well spend his spare time doing jigsaw puzzles. But no. This guy is our on a prowl, and never mind Max’s growl. Max is our hero KD’s Alsatian, whose bark is worse than his bite.

Rex is one of the several interesting characters that shows up in the taut plot not as diversionary gimmicks but organically written people who make a difference, no matter how  marginal, to the ongoing investigation.

There is also a love story—how can there not be?!—with KD, played with athletic appeal by Adivi Sesh. KD’s girl Aarya (Meenakshi Chowdhary) moves in bag and baggage and gets impregnated. Aarya’s unsmiling mother wonders how this miracle happened when they didn’t sleep in the same room.

The lighter moments sit easily on the dark story of a police investigation which goes horribly wrong halfway. The wrong suspect is nabbed and made a fall guy in the celebrated crime. This is  where the splendidly paced second-half with not a slack moment in view, kicks in.

It would be criminal to give away more information on the serial-killer. Suffice it to say  that the clues for the killer’s identity are  given  in the  prologue  itself. This  is a whodunit refreshingly denuded  of  diversions and  bogus suspects. The  idea is to  get to the killer’s identity with  the cop hero and his HIT(Homicide  Intervention Team) team without fuss or  deadened deviations.

While the editing (Grry BH) and cinematography (S Manikandan) seek the unexpected in the  familiar and come up trumps most of  the time, it is Adivi Sesh in the lead who anchors the  suspense, leading us with his unostentatious agility into the fragility of the gruesome crime.

By the time we reach the  gruesome climax involving lots  of  sharp instruments piercing human flesh , the dramatic tension multiplies manifold. Although we know where  it is  coming from, the killer’s identity is still a shock as is his brutal background.

The Second Case in the HIT universe is indeed far more involving than the first. Adivi Sesh’s  cop KD has many shades which he is not eager to flaunt into our face. To take an example, KD is initially shown to share tea with his subordinates. It’s a minor detail that says a lot  about his grounded nature.

Then there is KD’s hostility towards a team member Varsha (Komalee Prasad) whom he keeps a distance from. Such plot detailing is rare in Indian cinema. This  suspense  thriller  opens up the  genre with muted fanfare and amplified credibility. I can’t wait for the third film in the series.

Subhash K Jha is a Patna-based journalist. He has been writing about Bollywood for long enough to know the industry inside out.

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