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‘Keedam’ Movie Review: A Discourse on the Ethical Concerns Around Surveillance and Cybersecurity

Ethics aside, the film can be viewed positively as one woman’s valiant fightback, using her own tools, against a group of thugs intruding on her personal space.

Ethics aside, the film can be viewed positively as one woman’s valiant fightback, using her own tools, against a group of thugs intruding on her personal space.

Assumptions about what the title Keedam (Pest) means can be misleading in regards to this movie. Chances are the title is assumed to point to one of the film’s villainous elements. But, ultimately, it’s a term a dangerous set of antagonists use to describe protagonist Radhika Balan (Rajisha Vijayan), a cybersecurity expert. And, then you start to see the term in a new light and a new context.

Radhika, who runs a start-up, is an expert in her craft, but ethics reign supreme for her. His introductory scene itself is meant to emphasize this point. A wealthy client has come forward with a request to spy on his wife’s personal communications to bolster his divorce case. Despite the money offered, which is huge for a fledgling start-up, she refuses to take the job. Yet that resolve crumbles when she is confronted by a bunch of goons, who would do anything to get her and her father Balan (Sreenivasan), a retired lawyer, into trouble.

Keedam

Director: Rahul Riji Nair

With: Rajisha Vijayan, Sreenivasan

Director Rahul Riji Nair made a promising debut a few years ago with Ottamuri Velicham, follow it with various dishes; some of which worked, while others didn’t. The writing of Keedam was clearly driven by concerns about surveillance and cybersecurity. As one of the film’s characters says, it’s a time when even governments are accused of spying.

But it seems the filmmaker is leaning towards the idea that hacking and surveillance needn’t always be ethical, if the goal is virtuous and those being spied on are criminal elements. Whether the same surveillance powers are possessed by the criminal elements or those in power with bad intentions is not explored here, as it is always good humans and well-meaning police who have spy powers. in the movie.

In reality, this is not necessarily the case; the unlimited power that those with surveillance tools have over those being spied on is clearly showcased.

Ethics aside, the film can be viewed positively as one woman’s valiant fightback, using her own tools, against a group of thugs who intrude on her personal space. But, after peaking halfway through, when she begins the fightback, the storyline goes no further, choosing to go the usual predictable path. It only keeps that connection with cybersecurity and surveillance down to the very last point.

Ultimately, audiences are left with the question of whether the title Keedam has a negative or positive connotation. The answer depends on where you stand on the issue of unlimited surveillance; the background is not always as black and white as in the film.

Keedam is in theaters now.

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