HIT 2 movie review: Adivi Sesh starrer is a significant improvement ...

Adivi Sesh plays a top cop named Krishna Dev aka KD in director Sailesh Kolanu’s latest investigative thriller HIT: The Second Case. The film is the second instalment of the HIT series, which revolves around the elite cop unit Homicide Intervention Team.

KD is unusually cheerful for a police officer who deals with gruesome murders on a daily basis. His personality is the direct opposite of Vishwak Sen’s Vikram Rudraraju in HIT: The First Case (2020), who was a tortured soul. KD is young, handsome and talented. He is very conscious of his good qualities and never hesitates to flaunt them. Adivi Sesh adds style and verve not only to his character but to the entire film. He captures our attention even when the script does not.

KD heads the HIT unit in Vizag. When we first see him, he solves a murder without breaking a sweat. No, he is not as gifted as Sherlock Holmes. The person who committed the crime was really stupid. To KD’s credit, he even openly admits that. “Generally, these criminals are dumb. Bird-brained. We can catch them in five minutes,” says KD to the press at the crime scene.

KD’s confidence is shaken when he enters a crime scene. The body of a young woman has been chopped into several pieces and arranged on the floor of a popular hangout. The technical effort in this scene is remarkable, as the images seem so real and have a shattering effect on the viewer. The case becomes even more macabre and grim when KD finds out that, apart from the head of the identified victim, the rest of the body parts belong to various other unknown victims. “We have a serial killer out there,” KD is told by his colleague in forensics.

Now that they know there’s a serial killer on the loose targeting women, HIT officers are racing against time to stop him before he claims his next victim. They have to identify him and the morbid reasons the killer might have to justify his crime. And this part of the investigation is very compelling, especially the editing that switches back and forth between KD’s investigation, a court hearing, and public protests. For a moment, the film transports us into the volatile mind of the protagonist.

But Sailesh messes it up with the way he presents and shapes the serial killer. He expects us to give him a lot of leeway and not worry about the glaring holes in the plot. He keeps the suspense until the end, only to undo it all in moments, undermining the value of everything he’s accomplished so far.

Why did the serial killer decide to suddenly make a public spectacle of his murders? Is it because KD has called criminals birdbrains? If so, what about KD’s snarky remark made him take the risk of drawing attention to himself? Did he want to be found out? Is upsetting KD the only motivation for risking exposure? The way the killer commits the murders is so reckless that it’s a wonder he has not already been caught by the police.

Sailesh has good ideas, and he turns them into a good beginning, but he bungles the ending. This has become a habit of sorts with him. That was the case with HIT 1. The sequel could have been a memorable film in the investigative genre but ends without realising its full potential.

That being said, HIT 2 is a significant improvement over the first iteration. One can only hope that Sailesh fills in the gaps in his storytelling and becomes a more refined filmmaker with HIT 3.

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