The human genome is a fascinating concept, and even more fascinating is how identical twins with the exactly same DNA can be extremely different and extremely alike. Abhay explores this philosophy, but in a more dramatized and dangerous setting; One twin kills for profession; one twin kills for enjoyment; One is a commando; one has escaped from a mental institute. Abhay delves deep into the double helix paradigm and into the psychology of a killer, and does what Tarsem Singh's, "The Cell", or Rakesh Mehra's, "Aks-the reflection" could not do.
Abhay(Kamal Hassan) is the journey of a schizophrenic and fearless brother, whose past has wronged him and embedded its mark deep into his soul, creating a personal hell inside Abhay; A hell in which Abhay is living; A hell that haunts him every passing second and with every breath he takes. While Abhay spent most of his life in a mental asylum, his other twin Vijay(Kamal Hassan) was separated from him from childhood. Vijay is a commando that is due to marry his girlfriend, Tejashvari(Raveena Tandon), a news presenter for STAR TV, who is pregnant with his child. Wanting Abhay to share in with their celebrations, Vijay and Tejashvari decide to pay Abhay a visit at the asylum. A visit that meets with disastrous results. Abhay sees the reflection of his step mother in Tejashvari, a person who he immensely hated and caused his life to decay. Abhay's mission begins with Tejashvari, who he sees as an evil witch who is going to deteriorate Vijay's life, just like his step mother spoiled his fathers life. Abhay eventually manages to escape from the mental asylum and is now walking around free searching for the "witch" that his brother has just wed. Is the world safe from Abhay?
Kamal Hassan's story and screenplay is intelligent, well paced, innovative, engaging and extremely interesting. Character development is perfect. Each character has been well etched and contributes perfectly to the screenplay.
Abhay costing $7 million to produce, looks every dollar spent on it. Abhay is full of technical wizardry, 25 min of spectacular visual effects and animation executed marvellously by Total infotainment limited(India) and Cutting Edge(Australia).
Action and stunts by Vikram Dharma are stunning and well choreographed. Abhay has some very adrenaline pumping executed sequences and some very dangerous stunts. The most notable action sequences are in the climax sequences, which involves a long vehicle chase sequence, a hazardous bungie jump from atop a 50 story building, a jump from atop the same building onto a balloon suspended in the air, and then a fantastically choreographed fight sequence between Abhay and Vijay. Edting by M.U Kasi, is rapid fire. S.Tirru's cinematography is absolutely fantastic, he manages to capture the atmosphere very effectively and use some very advanced camera effects(motion control) to add to the visual splendour of Abhay.
Music is peppy and themed, and interwoven in the plot with purpose.
Kamal Hassan play's both the main character Abhay and Vijay. Normally I do not like Kamal Hassan's style of acting, I was very put off with his character portrayal in Hindustani, Hey Ram and Pushpak. However, he simply blew me away with Abhay. Kamal Hasaan has managed to seep deep into the character of Abhay and inject it with his life force. Kamal has built his body, learnt gestures and very well researched the personalities and behaviours of a psychopath killer for this role. However Abhay is not a two dimensional character as shown in most movies that deal with these themes. Kamal Hasaan performance adds one more dimension to Abhay's character, which normally would be perceived as the negative role, however Kamal's performance projects Abhay as both the hero and the villain.
Overall: A classic in every sense