Dr. Freddy Ginwala (Kartik Aaryan), is an extremely shy and introverted dentist who suffered from emotional trauma during his childhood. He has been making a profile on Meri Shaadi.com for 5 years but has yet to find a soul mate and because of that he has become the center of jokes. A chance meeting with Kainaaz Irani (Alaya F) changes everything. She got into an abusive marriage and her weakness drew Freddy to her. She grows from a patient to a secret lover. Freddy is now obsessed with her and is ready to press any button to have her permanently in his life. He will go as far as to kill if necessary. But there’s more to her than eye-catching. The love story shifts to the horror genre in the second half and soon it becomes a mind game between different players and also the police.
Movie is definitely a slow burner. A lot of time is spent building Freddy’s character. He is at his most comfortable with his tools, losing himself in his work and earning the trust of his patients. But he’s not everyone’s man outside of his clinic. He’s socially awkward and can’t seem to have any kind of relationship, with men or women. His best friend is a turtle named Hardy. Plus, he’s a hopeless romantic. So when he turns into a stalker, you don’t loathe him. He really earns your sympathy. You want him to stop what he’s doing because you feel he’s too naive to know the way of the world. You want to warn him that he is stepping into a trap. Freddy may be slow, but he’s not stupid. He begins planning his revenge with clinical precision, two steps ahead of everyone else in the film. This is the dichotomy between Dr Jekyll and Mr. Hyde which is interesting to watch in the movie. From a meek dentist, Freddy gradually becomes Dexter and that transformation is interesting to watch.
There is a monster that lurks behind every man’s skin and, unprovoked, it won’t do any harm. But poke enough and it will definitely come out. That’s the story of the movie in a nutshell. The film revolves around the acting of Karik Aaryan and he did not disappoint. He dives deep into his character and makes the image of the good boy next door work to his advantage. The movie comes from his quirks and eccentricities. He slowly fell apart and that’s when he started picking up the pieces and reshaping himself for the movie to go through. The movie is his attempt to show his versatility and he does it brilliantly. Alaya F tried to look both vulnerable and cunning in the film. Here, she showed that she is capable of delivering a performance and not just a pretty face.
Shashanka Ghosh is a maverick director who showed the yen differently with his first film, Waisa Bhi Hota Hai Part II (2003). He’s in his element here and has borrowed heavily from Hitchcockian tropes and noir elements to craft a story of messy desires and edgy characters who look like humans especially when they are inhuman.
Renuka Vyavahare, December 2, 2022, 12:40pm IST
Summary: A twist of love, loneliness and revenge. Freddy is a psychological thriller that sees the player and the player immersed in a dangerous game of cat and mouse. This race blurs the line between victim and perpetrator.
Freddy’s thoughts might resonate with Arthur Fleck, who wondered, “Am I the only one, or is it getting crazier out there?” For director Shashanka Ghosh and screenwriter Parveez Sheikh, Freddy has to be Joker (2019) in spirit and Ek Hasina Thi (2004) in execution. You even see Kartik play the imaginary violin and dance to Joaquin Phoenix’s creepy dance moves. The suspense and sinister energy surrounding Freddy is subtly integrated, immersing you in his story. The atmosphere adds to the established tension. However, the second half feels sloppy and immature. Once the mystery dies down, the psychological thriller turns into a mundane revenge drama that isn’t as satisfying as the original premise.
It’s good to see that Hindi cinema is heating up with psycho-crime thrillers. The highlight of the movie is Kartik Aaryan’s amazing performance. He’s an absolute revelation as Freddy, a love-obsessed wrongdoer whose rage boils but remains as calm as a cucumber. The actor changed his weight, body language, eye contact and signature smile to play Freddy and the efforts paid off. You’ll have to think twice before going to your dentist, thanks to Kartik and his sociopathic protagonist portrayal. Alaya F doesn’t do much to make her presence felt.
Freddy is quite attractive and unsettling but it falters in giving it its all. The movie starts off well but doesn’t reach its full potential. It skims through mental health issues, childhood trauma, and its impact on an individual, which deserves a deeper understanding. You can watch this for Kartik and his successful brave effort.