Regional cinema has now been slowly exploring unique genres and achieving greater heights in the film industry. With a plethora of action, romance, comedy, science-fiction, and horror films, the Telugu, Tamil, Malayalam, and Kannada industries are giving good competition to Bollywood films.
Speaking about the sheer regional power, the latest Telugu-language horror flick, Masooda, directed by Sai Kiran, also attempted something fresh for viewers. While the slow burner has its fair share of ups and downs, here is why Masooda can be a good watch for horror film lovers.
Masooda’s major plot arc in the world of horror genre is nothing new. However, the Muslim background to the story adds a sense of novelty to the film. The narrative revolves around a family residing in Hyderabad affected by a string of horrifying murders that took place in a village in Chittoor in the late 1980s and early 1990s. A single mother Neelam, played by Sangitha Krish lives with her teen daughter Nazia, essayed by Bandhavi Sridhar in a middle-class residential complex. They befriend their neighbour Gopi Krishna aka actor Thiruveer who helps the mother and daughter in conducting random jobs.
Soon, the story takes a drastic turn as Nazia starts behaving erratically, leaving her mother Sangitha and Gopi shocked. Gopi suggests that Nazia might be possessed by a demon. Questions like what caused Nazia to behave peculiarly? Is there a ghost in the scene? Did Nazia recover from her condition and most importantly who is Masooda? All these things are revealed slowly one by one, but leave you with more.
Although the film is a true slow burner from the beginning, the technical team has done wonders with amazing sounds, after-effects, and lighting. Be prepared to be on the edge of your seat as there are some frightening scenes and jumpscares caused by blinking lights, creaking windows and doors, dilapidated structures, and eerie forests. By sending goosebumps running down your spine, the pre-climax and climax episodes manage to capture your attention. The use of sound design was excellent, and it added to the film’s much-needed intrigue.
What went right:
Undoubtedly, Sangitha and Thiruveer as Neelam and Gopi respectively do a commendable job, almost carrying the sometimes yawn-fest of a film on their shoulders. The post-interval of the film is crucial since the burning mystery is finally lifted, much to the relief of viewers. The story then takes on a different and scary route. The makers of Masooda deserve praise for remaining faithful to the horror subgenre without adding pointless humour.
What went wrong:
In the name of a slow burner, Masooda is too slow, sometimes seeming that it is stretching beyond what’s necessary. A love track between Thiruveer and another actress Kavya is shown for a tad too long in the film, ruining the thrill and horror aspects of Masooda. Although the song is good to hear, it kills the excitement, making the film a little boring.
Overall, Masooda succeeds to a certain extent due to its originality and authenticity. The performances and technical mastery provide a good depth to the film, but the slow pacing and lag in the first hour are what cause problems. Anyone who enjoys horror movies is welcome to watch Massoda at least once.
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