In the latest thriller from Telugu filmmaker KV Guhan (118, WWW), a serial killer on the loose, crosses paths with a woman in search of her father and a wedding photographer trying to reach an assignment. Highway, which is being streamed on Aha, is utterly predictable, with the only surprise contained in its final scene.

En route from Vishakhapatnam to Bengaluru, Vishnu (Anand Deverakonda) and his buddy Samudram (Satya) meet Tulasi (Manasa Radhakrishnan), who has set out in the dead of the night to reunite with her father. Prone to mishaps and given to snivelling at the drop of a hat, Tulasi has the words “I am the next victim of the serial killer terrorising the countryside” all but tattooed on her forehead.

Das (Abhishek Banerjee) has managed to evade Special Task Force officer Asha (Saiyami Kher). He has notched up five kills, rips another woman to pieces on Asha’s watch, and finds his next victim in Tulasi. With some clever thinking from Vishnu, who has fallen for Tulasi, Asha and her team get closer to finding Das.

Perfunctorily filmed and performed from start to finish, the 123-minute film plays out like a cinematic version of television crime dramas. Asha’s intelligence at finding clues into Das’s whereabouts is countermanded by Tulasi’s grating whimpering.

Das’s dastardliness adds nothing to the serial killer canon. The depiction of one of his murders borders on the gratuitous. At least the climax is a departure from such films, even if it comes after a tour of the overly familiar.

Highway (2022).