Penguin, with Keerthy Suresh, on Amazon Prime: This wannabe moody thriller falls victim to some seriously bad writing

Posted on June 19, 2020

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I felt very sorry for Keerthy Suresh, who’s stuck with a character whose motivations — at any given point — are: “Er, uh, it says so in the script.”

Spoilers ahead…

Right from the beginning, Penguin proves that it has cunning twists up its sleeve. To start with, the film is not set in Antarctica. Ooh, I bet you didn’t see that coming! There’s more. You thought Charlie Chaplin’s prop was a walking stick. Now, it’s an axe! And the comedian’s garb is appropriated by a serial killer — or maybe this is just a one-off kidnapper. (Do penguins eat red herrings?) But I think my favourite twist is the name of the heroine, played by Keerthy Suresh. It’s Rhythm. No, it’s Ritu. No, it’s Rhythm. No, it’s Ritu. I’m going to settle for Rhythm. It has a nice, um, rhythm to it. That’s more than you can say for this supposedly moody thriller, which mistakes mists and a blueish palette for atmosphere.

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