Ram Venkat Srikar
'This Akhil Akkineni-Surender Reddy is an unbearable collation of spy cliches’ was the headline of my review of Agent. This befits the review of Spy too, but unlike filmmakers, I don’t have the liberty to rehash and churn the same text every time.
There isn’t an ounce of novelty here, apart from the connection to real-life history featuring the covert operations of Subhash Chandra Bose, but the way it is executed lacks the gravitas or thrill to compensate for Spy’s creative shortcomings.
The problem with Spy is that every plot point feels derivative of a million spy films we have seen in the past. A RAW agent named Subhash (Aryan Rajesh) is killed in action right after capturing and terminating a terrorist named Kadhir Khan.
When Kadhir Khan rises back from hell, Jai is tasked with terminating the terrorist and unearthing the real truth of his brother’s death. This might sound interesting as a one-liner, but the way it has been developed into a feature-length screenplay, makes its 135-minute runtime feel like a lifetime.
Does the film make up for the flaws in writing with visual finesse and moments that give a high? I really wish. I’m willing to let go of a few patchy VFX shots and even low-resolution drown footage in some key scenes, but master shots missing focus in key scenes is just... sad. I guess shots without focus are a metaphor for a screenplay without focus.