The police and a journalist are on the trail of a murder victim to unearth the identity of the culprit and to quell a disturbed spirit Review: Cold Case has an innovative story track, with the investigative thriller running on two very different propositions, but in a parallel narrative. ACP Sathyajith, played by Prithviraj, is faced with a crime that is almost literally faceless. When a skull is found in a discarded package, the police must start from identifying the victim, to find out the motive and the culprit. It makes for an interesting and unique premise. On the other hand, Aditi Balan portraying Medha, a single mother and journalist specialising in paranormal stories, is faced with otherworldly disturbances in her own life, when she moves into a new home. How is this connected with the case that the police are investigating? The audience gets a glimpse of the victim’s lonely life and broken home through the pieces that mostly the police and Medha, who is seeking a resolution, put together. It is only at the very end that the policeman and the journalist meet and discuss the case, and share their thoughts on the culprit. Until then, the mood is fairly edgy, thanks not just to the red herrings that pop up with the mention of a new character by either of the protagonists, but also because of the gripping and quite frightening horror sequences in the early bits of the film. Thrillers, and para normal ones at that, seem to be the genre of choice for Malayalam filmmakers at this time, and while cinematographer turned director Tanu Balak moves the story along at a steady pace and you are curious to see what happens next, the two narratives in this story, scripted by Sreenath V Nath, don’t really gel. To paraphrase what Sathyajith says at the end, you are either inclined to go with logic or with a belief in an outside power, and it’s difficult to mix the two, at least in this case. And there is a hint of a sequence. Prithviraj plays his role in his usual pitch perfect style, and it would almost seem amiss not to mention his trim – almost too slim by Malayali standards – but stylish physique. Aditi Balan does her role well. With two topline cinematographers, Gireesh Gangadharan and Jomon T John, the scenes are framed classily, with even the creepy moments being ‘tasteful’ and not over-the-top. Music by Prakash Alex also feels just right. While Cold Case was meant as a theatre release for maximum impact, it manages to convey the effect it intended as a streaming content. If you are in the mood for some investigative-horror thrills, this will be a good film to cosy up with someone to watch and guess what happens next, but it doesn’t offer the satisfaction of a clever whodunit.