Cold Case - A 'not bad' thriller that is content to do the bare minimum
Cold Case tries to bring together the investigative thriller and horror genres together. It is an interesting premise that isn't pitting logic and the unknown/supernatural against each other but rather sees them coming together to solve a case.
A skull is found in a river and ACP Satyajith is called in to investigate. He has to first identify the victim. Elsewhere, Padmaja(Medha) a journalist begins to experience an unknown presence in her newly shifted home. Both tracks converge and lead to the killer. While the idea does sound interesting, at some point in the film you get the feel that either of the tracks actually becomes redundant in the presence of the other. Medha and Sathyajith are more or less doing the same thing and apart from the climax when they meet, their parallel investigations never really complement each other. This idea might have worked better if there was an emotional angle at play. Perhaps, this is what the track involving Medha was intending to do but what we really have are two similar investigation tracks.
What makes Cold Case work (to a certain extent) is that it remains rather low key right from the beginning. Unlike many thrillers it doesn't hype things too much in the initial half and then disappoint in the climax with a 'meh' reveal. A couple of jump scares are nicely done and might have worked better in theatres. The cast does a neat job and everyone keeps it subtle. While 'Yaavarum Nalam/13B' might come to mind, 'Cold Case' is a lot more closer to 'Eeram' which too was a film about a paranormal force aiding in an investigation. But Eeram had a solid emotional angle to it and the killer was very much in the fray and an important part of the story. While the reveal in Cold Case is not an expected one, it also doesn't shock you because it doesn't involve a major character.
Cold Case remains engaging with some good moments and thrills but that's about it. It never really has you play the guessing game nor is there a payoff.