Friday, February 13, 2004


If The Matrix movies could use Hindu mythology to create visually exciting and mentally stimulating films, an Indian filmmaker, specially one like Mani Shankar who is adept at special effects, and has a wealth of folklore at his disposal, should have been able to tell a better story –one that Indian audiences could connect with.

Instead, he churns out a boring mish-mash of half-baked science and fuzzy mythology. The evil Bhuriya (Sunil Shetty) finds Ravan’s ‘Rudraksh’ during an archaeological excavation in Sri Lanka. The ‘Rudraksh’ bestows great powers on the possessor. After all that build up, the height of Bhuriya’s wickedness is starting communal riots in Mumbai!

For some incomprehensible reason, he needs the help of Varun (Sanjay Dutt) to set up his evil empire. Varun is a faith healer, who is being ‘investigated’ by scientist Gayatri (Bipasha Basu) and her all-woman band of researchers, who run around half-dressed!

Varun and Bhuriya have to come face to face for a few high-tech action sequences-- for this, a corny apology of a script was concocted by Shankar. He probably hoped audiences would be so dazzled by the SFX, that they wouldn’t ask what is going on and why!

There was a germ of a smart entertainer in there somewhere, a contemporary sci-fi version of the Ramayan, but it is never allowed to develop.

The film must have been physically tough on the actors – all that wire work—but no acting skills were called for. Just a lot of muscle flexing and changing of contact lenses.

What a waste of money, effort and FX on a movie that will be laughed out of the theatres!


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