Karthik Subbaraj has picked quite an unusual genre that is absolutely new for the moviegoers of this generation. With not a single dialogue in the film, it still manages to raise our anxiety packed with thrilling moments and heartfelt acting that remains in our head when we move out of the theatre. With the picturesque back-drop of Kodaikanal from Tamil Nadu, Mercury's plot revolves around four deaf and dumb youngsters who are life-long friends partying in a friend's farmhouse. The first half is slow paced and building up of some strange turn of events that lands the four of them in trouble. It is Prabhudheva's character as a wounded blind walking dead creature interpreted to be in this state due to tragic mercury poisoning that killed more than 80 lives. It is a vast shut corporate factory where the four of them are stuck with the scary Prabhudheva inside and from here begins the spine-chilling moments of thrills and chills that caters our interest with a lot of curiosity. Ahhh ! will they be able to get out of this mess safely? Which one of them will be alive until the very end? such questions usually rise out of anxiety and Subbaraj's film manages to do so. The second half is where the thrill reaches its peak. Soon they realise that the zombie-like creature around them is blind and haunts them going after the voices in his head.
The performances of four physically challenged youngsters is what made the film breath-taking in every way. Sananth Reddy, Deepak Paramesh, Anish Padman, Shashank and Remya Nambeesan performed the deaf and dumb role flawlessly communicating each other exactly in the sign language. Some of the emotional scenes from the film are donning and lock down in our heart with a lot of empathy and understanding. Deva's character sketch is magnificently intimidated. His habit of moving fingers like playing the violin has a deep story to it. He acted the rigorous blind man conditioned from the mercury poisoning leading all the way with his stellar acting performance. The film is critically sorted with a jaw-dropping twist in its climax. It impressively focuses the concept of the corporate earth in the film's credit scene.
A shout out to all the tragic incidents across the world due to factory malfunctioning and hazardous chemical epidemic that took many lives. It highlighted '1976 Seveso disaster' from Italy that killed more than 3000 animals and many slaughtered as they were affected by the destructive chemicals break-down. 1984 Bhopal Gas tragedy, The Minamata disaster from Japan and the '2001 Kodaikanal mercury poisoning' which took more than 80 lives were all the incidents highlighted at the end of the film. Targeting the word 'Corporate Earth' that makes us think deeply about the slow poison destruction that the corporate industry does not care about.
Let's talk about the technical aspect of the film. This Karthik Subbaraj directed silent-thriller is a technically profound masterpiece. Background score by Santhosh Narayanan who is the 'Man of the Match' and his part surely remains pivotal in a silent flick, isn't it? Moreover, Narayanan doesn't overdo the thrilling score and croons it in parts especially when required. No un-necessary score and the selection of intense music is what makes this thriller an enjoyable finished product. Cinematography by S. Tirru is commendable and his picturesque captured shots with innovation covering a lot of angles is what makes this ordinary thriller watch worthy. Art Director Satees Kumar had laid a convincing factory location textured with green lights that showcase the theme of the film. Film editing by Vivek Harshan has lined up the film's narrative flawlessly and the flow is bang on. Karthik Subbaraj's screenplay is remarkably catchy treating us with a memorable silent thriller after a long long time.
Give it a watch if you want to experience something fresh because Mercury is worth a watch.