As fear seeps in, Swapna (Taapee Pannu) looks up at the wall in her room which carries a board on which it's written- \What if life is a video game and déjà vu are just check points!' Outside her house, there's a psycho killer on the prowl who enjoys beheading women and recording their final moments on camera. What follows next upto the climax is a heart-thumping, chilling ride that's hard to box into one genre.
Ashwin Saravanan's Game Over begins with the voyeuristic activity of a serial killer before he brutally murders a young girl. The scene then shifts to Swapna (Taapsee Pannu), an avid video gamer who is obsessed with beating her own score in Pac-Mac.
Slowly, we realize that Swapna has got her own demons to deal with. She's scared of the dark and suffers from a suicidal tendency owing to a traumatic past. An 'anniversary reaction' and a 'memorial tattoo' and director Ashwin whips up a film that gives you the chills and creeps you out at places.
When it comes to the film's concept, Game Over leaves you quite impressed with its novelty and the guessing game throughout makes sure your eyes are glued to the screen. While the director takes a few references from cult films like Psycho or Peeping Tom, he manages to give it his own twist and seamlessly blend into the narrative. Also, the filmmaker has a keen eye for detailing which helps in building up the mood of the film.
On the flip side, while trying to pack in too many things, Ashwin misses out on tying up a few loose strings. Also, the film's pace slows down a part at places just when things start getting exciting. The abrupt end is a tad sore thumb especially after an eddge-of-the-scene hunt game.
Speaking about the performances, right from the first frame till the last, Taapsee Pannu wears her character Swapna like her second skin. Her emotions feel like your own. Vinodhini Vaidyanathan as Swapna's caretaker Kalamma is brilliant.
Vinodhini Vaidyanathan's camerawork perfectly packs in the tense moments and keeps you hooked to the proceedings on screen. Editor Richard Kevin has some solid jump-scares to his credit. Ron Ethan Yohann blends well with the plot.
Ashwin Saravanan blends psychology and paranormal to give you a thrilling ride that's got a few speed-breakers, but still makes for a spine-chilling twisty game. I am going with 3 stars.