Critic’s Rating : 2.5 / 5
The Y Movie Review : Loose screenplay and story pull the potential down
The Y review: The horror genre in Indian cinema seems to have upped its game as more filmmakers are embracing better production values, VFX and treatment. This holds for Kannada film director Girideva Raaj’s The Y. Sure, the movie employs tropes such as a sprawling bungalow, an antique grandfather’s clock that has something to do with the supernatural occurrences, a sceptical husband, frumpy domestic help and gardener, a scaredy friend for comic relief and a doctor treating the victim. Still, the audience is not subjected to ghosts with shoddy and crude make-up.
Girideva’s Hindi film debut is a psychological horror that combines both genres. Still, a better fleshed-out and explained PTSD angle would have helped to make the story more convincing and resounding. Eerie shadows, nightmares, and visions are ambiguous, and things are suspenseful until the end, when the truth is revealed. Director of Photography Karthik Mallur has created the ambience skilfully. Christopher Jayson’s score and cinematography together will give you jumpscares on many occasions.
While Girideva handles the filming well, his screenplay is loose and incoherent in many parts. There are a few instances that go unexplained. For example, Deeksha’s (Leonilla D’souza) laptop glitches and the keyboard types’ y’ (there are a couple of reasons for the letter being used), and her husband Yuvan (Yuvan Hariharan) has a similar nightmare that she does.
Deeksha and Yuvan’s backstory doesn’t add to the narrative, and the bit about the fatal accident is reinstated too many times. The mansion has its owner’s (Deeksha’s grandmother) image and a collection of vintage cars that are displayed time and again, and one would expect these to have something to do with the story, too, but end up being props.
Leonilla, as Deeksha, delivers a decent performance, considering she doesn’t have any dialogue as she loses her voice. She mainly needs to rely on her expressions, which she manages well. Yuvan supports her ably as a kind and supportive husband.
The movie is not cheapjack or gimmicky and would have benefitted from a tighter screenplay and a better storyline because the spooky ambience and the fear factor are there. Net-net, The Y had ample potential had these two factors not been underutilised. You might enjoy the occasional jumpscare if you are a horror fan.