Penguin is a poor second-rate cross-breed of many iconic films of the same kind, fused together dashing hopes.
The same old psychological thriller where the antagonist has an odd attire meant to be scary with a bit of mother’s love spun around it. It takes a bite from almost every psychic film like a villain who has a weird style of dressing, a psychiatrist, mid-way twists, etc.
The Amazon Prime released flick paves way to nothing but the same old road. Despite all the flaws, Keerthy Suresh does an amazing job and steals the show.
Penguin goes through the life of Rhythm, a pregnant woman who loses her first child at the age of two and finds him six years later, only to know that he is not an ordinary child and has something mysterious going around him. This mystery around him puts Rhythm under the fear of losing him again. If she will be able to find who did this to him and the reason behind it forms the plot.
Penguin’s trailer was ambitious and promising. With such great names like Karthik Subbaraj, Keerthy Suresh, the hopes were definitely high. But the expectations backfired as Penguin turned out to be a huge disappointment.
It starts with a murky mood and tone, which sets up the environment of chills and excitement suited to the genre of the film. As it develops, it builds on promising layers for first few minutes but faces slow death as it moves. It is the same old wine story except for the change in the stereotypical delineation of the antagonist which most of the Indian films still need to work on. Even though it has a technically skilled crew, the creative elements fall apart ending up to be a joke.
STORY and SCRIPT
Written by the director himself, Eashvar Karthic, the story lost its crux because of poor screenplay. An average, dull first half, followed by an intriguing second half which faces downfall as it goes. With many loopholes at times carried over by tedious writing, the script fails to impress and leaves us crestfallen. Being the prominent reason for the film’s failure, Eashvar definitely needs to improve his writing skills and brush it up.
Poor script accompanied by average direction. Penguin had a propitious story that did not get a proper sailor to helm it. If a neat screenplay was penned it could have been saved from being a sinking ship. But flat and non-sensical elements affected the direction, ending up to be a disaster.
Performance-wise, it is a half baked cake. Keerthy Suresh is the only person who was graceful and amazing in her role. Rest of the cast was terrible and underperformed. The director either didn’t get time to conduct a casting call or the actors were so terrible at their job. For the national award winning actress, the cast was not even a bit of a competition. Such a poor cast.
Visuals and cinematography were really good. The locations, frames, and colour grading were eye candy. Technically, the film has a good team. Let it be the lighting, places, or sets, visually Penguin was really appealing and the only uplifting factor of this highly monotonous flick.
Music by Santhosh Narayanan is not something that will be an earworm. Just after the movie ends, you will leave that part of film too.
Penguin is just an average film that has its few moments which are really good but stays humdrum as a whole. The beautiful locations, visuals, and Keerthy Suresh are the only saving grace and reason you may want to watch this film. If you are looking for a spine chilling thriller, skip this one as it may not satisfy your crave.