Freddy review: An extremely impressive villain origin story undone by its own shortcomings

Aishwarya Srinivasan
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Freddy review: This story of how an introverted dentist turns into a killer in his quest for true love will give you goosebumps with its plot twist but also leave you a bit disappointed for its lack of attention to detail!

Here’s how it feels when an introvert steps outside in the real world, the sun is hissing down on us, and people feel more claustrophobic than walls ever could. And forming relationships? Please! We need 12 hours of practice minimum before expressing how we feel. But just because we don’t speak up often doesn’t mean we don’t feel things. I’d say we feel more than most people do because the majority of us are overthinkers as well. We also might be invisible to you in a room full of people, but we sure do notice everything. 

But Freddy, directed by Shashanka Ghosh, blurs the line between being an introvert and being just a plain creep. The movie revolves around Freddy Ginwala (Kartik Aaryan), a dentist by profession but also a simple-hearted Parsi boy who has been determined to find ‘the one' for himself for the past 5 years. The only best friend that he’s had so far in his life is his tortoise, Hardy. I mean, of course, an introvert would have a tortoise as a pet, it’s a living, breathing metaphor of how introverts run back into their shells if they're ever confronted. 

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No matter how many times he rehearses the conversation in his mind, he still struggles with even basic small talk. But his world turns upside down when he meets Kainaaz Irani (Alaya F), although much to his bad luck and hers too, she is stuck in an abusive marriage. Just when he thought he had no shot with her, she shows up at his clinic with an excuse. He loved her the way she wanted to be loved, he was gentle and became a person in whom she found solace in. The song Tum Jo Milo by Abhijeet Srivastava gives you all the feels that it almost makes you fall for this twisted love story. But when you snap out of it, you realize that for Freddy, she was an obsession taking over his mind every day. He fantasized about how a typical family life would be like with her, and at night, he lurked around her house and stared at her window from his car. As if we don’t have enough Joe Goldbergs in this world to deal with already!

Driven by the passion of being together and starting a new life, both Freddy and Kainaaz had just one big obstacle in their path- her alcoholic monstrous husband, who Freddy kills off very casually under the guise of an accident. Then after four days of laying low, he returns to Kainaaz, but only this time, she is not the same Kainaaz that he fell in love with earlier. And there we have the perfect cause for a villain origin story. 

I felt the movie as a whole worked best for Kartik Aaryan since a character like Freddy is something that he’s never played before in his career. He has gone from playing a ‘chick magnet’ to finally breaking that stereotype by playing a polar opposite character from his real-life personality as well. Also, the character development of Freddy is pretty well-written by Parveez Sheikh. In the beginning, he seemed like someone who is not at all street smart, but as the film progresses, and his character is put in difficult situations, it brings out a cleverer side of him. Or maybe that also comes out because of the deep-rooted trauma he has from a horrific incident from his childhood. 

One of my problems with this film is how it makes committing a murder look like a cakewalk. With the technology we have today, it’s astonishing how easily they get away with everything and how little investigation happens on a murder case, something I don’t believe would happen IRL. Other than this there were parts of the film that didn't feel authentic either like Kainaaz wearing lucknowi kurtas and high heels when the entire movie is filled with Parsi clichés. Not to forget the bruises on her after her husband hits her; they can easily be recognized as artificial makeup. Also, being a Mumbaikar myself, I can assure you that there’s no such thing as a ‘sun saan gali’ here even if it’s 4 in the morning, especially not in Dadar Parsi Colony!

And many scenes in the film, especially the ones with Kainaaz and ‘he who must not be named’ were really icky to watch. This made the film quickly go from icky to eerie in a matter of minutes. I had to look away from the screen because my weak heart could not stomach those sinister visuals. Though the film's climax is definitely not a typical climax that you usually see in revenge-driven stories.

Overall, Freddy is a story that will make you question morality. Does doing something entirely and morally wrong for the one you really love make it okay? In that case, was taking revenge in the most gruesome way possible justified because of what Kainaaz did to Freddy? Then where does one draw the line between love and obsession? A lot of these questions have no answers and have been left open-ended just like the ending of the film. And while it might’ve given Freddy the closure that he needs, it didn't give me one as a viewer!

Freddy is currently streaming on Disney+Hotstar!

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