| Action | 26-01-2023
Cast - Sudheer Babu, Bharath Niwas, Srikanth, Chitra Shukla, Mounika Reddy, others
Director - Mahesh
Producer - V Ananda Prasad
Banner - Bhavya Creations
Music - Ghibran
Sudheer Babu isn’t new to cop roles. He shined as a police officer in Nani and Indraganti’s V as well. But as ACP Arjun Prasad he attempts something new and different, probably something he hadn’t done before. This makes the Hunt interesting. He is joined by Bharat and Srikanth. Has Sudheer made a successful comeback? Is his Hunt impressive? Let’s dig deep to know.
Arjun Prasad (Sudheer Babu), an Assistant Commissioner Of Police, is handling high-profile broad-daylight murder of his fellow ACP and close friend Aryan Dev (Bharath). He loses his memory in a road accident and he rejoins the office with help of another friend and his superior Mohan (Srikanth). As Arjun tries to unravel the mystery surrounding his close friend’s murder, a shocking truth comes out. The film is a mission to find out the real killer and his motive.
Sudheer Babu has got a role which has a lot of scope. Largely, he justifies. He once again proves he is a game for action stunts. His shirtless physique and intense workouts are jaw-dropping and inspiring. Srikanth as well-wisher and friend is alright. Bharat (Premisthe fame) appears to be a miscast for the role. Mime Gopi gets wasted in a shallow and unevolved role. Kabir Singh as a military man and his episode fails to connect. Mounika Reddy is alright as a fellow cop in Sudheer’s team. Goparaju Ramana as senior policeman Murthy is passable. Chitra Shukla as Aryan Dev’s girlfriend Nivetha has a plot twist at the end. Aryan Dev’s family is just filler.
Hunt has a simple plot to reveal a murder mystery. It has a back-and-forth screenplay that works in parts. The initial half has some tense moments. Whereas the second-half goes haywire. First-time director Mahesh Surapaneni gets only half-right. Music composer Ghibran doesn’t disappoint with his background score. Whereas the item number of Apsara Rani that is aimed to give relief in serious proceedings failed to entertain. It involved story progress, but the song and placement puts off. Arul Vincent camera work and Prawin Pudi’s editing get it right.
Okay First Half
Some Tense Moments
Initial Investigation Scenes
Uncanny Murder Motive
Lacks Gripping Second Half
Hunt is the remake of Mumbai Police. Though the makers have hidden this to not reveal the spoilers, the moment the film begins it is pretty evident that it is a remake of the 2013 crime thriller Mumbai Police. The original worked as it was a rare trick that was played on the protagonist’s story. However, this is made a decade later i.e in 2023. Now audiences are smarter and good at guessing. The audiences may not guess the motive of Hunt if the original isn’t watched. But guessing the thriller is not a big deal. This is why making a crime thriller is highly challenging until and unless the makers rework heavily on the dots and how they connect. Sadly, Hunt fails to score here.
There are two major problems with the Hunt. One, why should the audience take Aryan Dev’s murder case seriously. The director Mahesh failed to establish how crucial it is. The lack of emotional bond between 3 friends and their friendship. The second major problem is with the suspects. None of the initial suspects (Colonel Vikram Singh or Roy) in the murder are serious enough to feel they are suspicious in the murder of Aryan Dev. And there is a long terror sequence that comes in the middle to give a terror touch. This is completely off from the main narrative. It looks out of place. And there is a sequence in flashback where police and army fight. This whole episode is silly and fails to connect. Though there are flaws, the initial investigation scenes are intense. Some moments have worked here and there. All the action scenes are shot well. Sudheer Babu offers his usual action treat.
The narrative in the second-half goes for a complete toss. The momentum that is there in the first half isn’t sustained in the second-half thus resulting in a non-gripping latter half. Director Mahesh couldn’t make it work here. The film suffered from the second-half syndrome. There is a shocking element in the climax. This is a very brave attempt since no mainstream hero does it. Sudheer Babu deserves appreciation for accepting this. However, this may not be comfortable with the large section of the audience. This shocking twist of murder motive may only struck chords with limited people. Probably, this should have been shown in a more subtle way. Also, there are some repetitive scenes owing to the back-and-forth screenplay which require a more effective way of narration. Hunter is not a typical crime thriller and it has its shortcomings. This is not a complete hunt. It makes one expect more and better from Sudheer Babu and the makers.
Bottom-line: Misfired Hunt