It’s a miracle Sypder got made and I mean that in the nicest possible way. As I watched the film, I kept wondering if there’s any other Indian director who could have got such a script green-lighted, let alone complete it convincingly. A work of ambition, it’s a pleasure to see a director do so much, despite having the dates of a superstar.
Even so, there’s much to like about a mass hero film where he wins over the villain using intelligence rather than muscle. If only we were intelligent enough to understand what the heroine was doing in the middle of all this.
Mahesh Babu plays an Intelligence Bureau officer who goes against the government norms to protect people from harm's way. How one failure leads him to a menacing psychopath serial killer, and how he encounters him is all Spyder is about. Mahesh Babu's performance in his first straight Tamil film is decent, just that he could have been little more expressive.
Spyder will be remembered for the breathtaking battle between Mahesh Babu and SJ Suryah. One of the sequences follows a similar pattern of 12 man shootout scene from Thuppakki but this one might appear artificial to a few sections of the audiences.
Both Kaththi and Thuppakki went on to become blockbusters, but failed in establishing a solid love portion which is the same case in SPYder. The mandatory romance portion has been inserted just for the sake of gloss and ARM frantically searches for a good reason to bring those numbers from Harris Jeyraj in.
Verdict: Watch SPYder for Mahesh's genuine efforts and SJ Surya’s gritty performance. If you are looking for a fitting duel between the hero and villain you might get disappointed for the film shines only on their respective characters and is let down when it comes to their duel.
Director AR Murguadoss introduces us to Sudalai with a brutal crime that happens under Shiva’s watch. Shiva rushes to a crime scene where two females, one a teenage girl and another a woman cop (Shiva’s friend) have been cut into pieces and their body parts have been mixed up.
The main antagonist of Murguadoss’ film strikes fear in the audience even before he is introduced on the screen.
Murugadoss gives us creeps with the way he has presented Suryah as Sudalai. Be it his hairstyle, mannerisms or how he revels in other’s pain, Suryah owns every frame.
The director doesn't even exploit the contrasting acting styles of his hero and villain to the full - the understated, almost Zen-like acting style of Mahesh Babu and the over-the-top, but crowd-pleasing performance of SJ Suryah.
The writing lets Spyder down entirely after a point and, unlike Thuppakki (which was also about a man trying to save and a man trying to destroy), what should have been an edge-of-the-seat cat-and-mouse game between good and evil turns into a movie that cannot decide between wanting to be a crackling thriller and an anything-goes masala movie.