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Times of India
: The film follows a cop who chances upon an accident which kills a man and he embarks on a journey to find certain answers related to that accident victim.
One by two
begins with a man over a woman, heaving under a quilt, the woman whispering passionate promptings into the ears of her partner. The awkward languor is soon broken by a series of swift inter-cuts which lead to a car banging straight into a lorry crossing the road. A man is found dead. Arunkumar Aravind sets off his film with a sense of urgency staging incidents, conversations in sudden flashes triggering a swarm of questions.
It's about twins, Harinarayanan and Ravinarayanan, played by Murali Gopy and when one of them dies, a cop named Yusuf Marakkar (Fahad Fazil) sets out to untangle the mystery wilfully constructed by their father, a rich businessman. There is a veil that needs to be ripped apart to reveal the true identities.
One by two
flaunts substance for a richly flavoured psychological thriller, however right from the opening scene the film suffers from an unavoidable drain of what it actually promises to offer.
Almost every character in this film appears to be ravaged by his/her own demented psyche. A man unable to bear the loss of his own brother tries to end his life, he recuperates after shedding his own identity and invoking that of his brother. The cop who is in pursuit of the real identity is weakened by the psychological scars left over by a frightening incident he had witnessed as a child.
A woman who plays the love interest of one of the twin brothers seems to nurse the most severe mental wreckage, though in a subtle manner. She is aware of whom she has lost and yet willingly submits herself to the lustful moments without a tinge of guilt and sometimes with perfect consciousness. The breakdown that happens sometime later seems totally manufactured out of circumstances and her own identity flutters in thin air.
Never does the director seem to hold any control over his characters that are let loose with their distorted minds on an abandoned landscape, free to do anything they wish. Fahadh and Murali Gopy both pull off stunning moments, but not too often.
The frequent exposition of fractured minds and multiple identities coagulate into a kind of total disorder and there is forced influx of evils that perpetrate medical field so that the events somehow rush the film to its end, though far from a coherent conclusion.
One by two
comes across as a foiled attempt, the characters either appearing too complex or too shallow, never being able to fix themselves to the core.