Review Kalki 2898 AD: Primed for an exciting sequel

'Kalki 2898 AD' is written and directed by Nag Ashwin, the third-time director. Produced under Vyjayanthi Movies, the film has been touted to be the most expensive Indian film.


Bhairava (Prabhas) is a hardened bounty hunter who finds himself locking horns with a seemingly unkillable figure named Ashwatthama (Amitabh Bachchan).

The Complex, meanwhile, is heavily guarded and ruled by Supreme Yaskin (Kamal Haasan), a demonic force. Here, SUM-80 aka Sumathi (Deepika Padukone), a pregnant woman who was a subject of scientific experimentation, is on the run for her life. The story partly takes place in a grim future as indicated by the title. How do the lives of the Bhairava-Yaskin-Sumathi trio intersect? That's what the film is about.


Prabhas embodies cheerfulness as an intriguing character that finds itself under-represented. His performance is a revelation, nevertheless, surpassing the comical range he displayed in past ventures. The weight of a dying world hangs heavy when he is not around.

The legendary Amitabh Bachchan is a towering presence, getting to participate in action sequences. Kamal Haasan delivers a chilling portrayal of Supreme Yaskin, a tyrant who thrives in a dark society built on force and abuse.

Deepika Padukone embodies existential dread. Her character grapples with the oppressive reality that defines her world. Disha Patani sheds overt glamour in a drama where hardened survivors inhabit an unforgiving environment. The supporting cast is equally impressive. Rajendra Prasad and Shobhana add depth as weathered citizens, while Dulquer Salmaan, Vijay Deverakonda (as Arjuna), and Mrunal Thakur add texture to the film's tapestry.

Technical Departments:

1. Production Design & Art Direction: Both gritty and sleek where necessary, the props and sets are atmospheric. They sit pretty with the lighting and the distinct world in which the story is set.
2. Background Music: Santhosh Narayanan's score perfectly suits the landscapes and motifs of the dystopian sci-fi film.
3. Cinematography: Djordje Stojiljkovic's work is oriented towards delivering breathtaking shots. At the same time, the visuals feel grounded where they need to.
4. Costume Designer: Archana Rao's costumes were consciously made to seem like the faded finery from a lost era. The dull greens are apt.


1. The first fight involving Prabhas is whistle-worthy. It comes mingled with a Bhagavad Gita sloka and a touch of Punjabi music.

2 . The first scene involving Kamal Haasan gives a high. His characterization is better than that of Bhairava's.

3. Deepika Padukone's first scene in Shambala. For the first time, the film feels like an Indian drama.

4. The visuals are top-notch, the VFX has been done with extreme care even though it is hard to believe that the film's budget is something like six hundred crores.

5. The ending and the lead-up to the second part.

6. The lead-up to the reveal about Prabhas' character is very enjoyable.


1. The conversations feel too plasticky and unsettling at times. The use of English-language words like 'units' doesn't add to the world-building much.

2. Bujji, the futuristic sci-fi vehicle used by Bhairava, is distracting after a point.

3. Bhairava's foray into a new world in the presence of a female character is undone by weak visuals and incoherent writing. Director Nag Ashwin wanted it to feel as enormous and amusing as what Prabhas' character experienced in 'Baahubali: The Beginning' after his first tryst with Tamannaah Bhatia's character.

4. The cameos played by Rajamouli and RGV are pretty bad despite the meta references.

5. The emotions of the characters remain sketchy, especially because of their constant urge to be light-veined.

6. The arc of Prabhas' character after the interval is not strong till before the climax.

Vox Verdict:

'Kalki 2898 AD' wants to be a comedy set in a unique world while also being an epic dystopian sci-fi movie. It gets the latter part fairly well.

Rating: 3.25/5

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