Rahul Desai of Film Companion is a great reviewer. His reviews are balance, neutral and basically a fun read. Rahul Desai is one of the few reviewers who made news and shook the Indian journalism industry. His backstory’s simple. The guy used to be a reviewer for The Times of India.
He reviews Kangana Ranaut’s ‘Tanu Weds Manu’ and that rating was revised by his employer. The dude quit publicly, making one of the first backlashes in Indian media journalism. And with publicly, we mean he literally posted his resignation on his Facebook and Twitter. This was big. He wasn’t working for a ‘Mom and Pop’ outfit. He was working for The Times of India.
Now, many cynics will say that Desai was finished in the industry and nobody would hire him. We have inside knowledge that a major television channel thought of hiring him, but they didn’t, because who’d bell the cat if he puled the same stunt in their outfit?
Therefore, Rahul Desai matters. And the guy just listed a couple of main-stream films that shouldn’t have been made. While a major chunk of his list are legit main-stream films with A-lister, he even added a horror film to this list. Which one?
Vikram Bhatt’s ‘Haunted 3D’.
Vikram Bhatt’s ‘Haunted 3D’ was the re-launch pad of Mithun Chakraborthy’s son, Mahakshay. The film was released in 2011. The story was a mish-mash of many other Bollywood horror films. Basically, it was about man who tried to sexually assault a woman. Distraught, the woman kills him, but his spirit sexually assaults her every night, leading to her suicide. Even the woman’s spirit is trapped by the spirit, leading to the main characters quest to release both the spirits.
We remember the hype when Haunted 3D released. Made by a big name, it had everything done… the PR, the tie-ups, the pressers, everything. Surprisingly, the film was well received by the audience, making Vikram Bhatt a name to reckon with in the Bollywood horror industry.
It is not very difficult to understand what made the film a success with the Indian audience. After all, this was one of the first times that a horror film didn’t have the sleaze. It also had some humor – not the Rajendra Nath stamp one – and well, it had the 3D stamped all over it.
From a film blogger’s point of view, the film had a good story too – even if it was a mish-mash of The Entity and Tabu’s Hawa and other such films. A spirit captured by a spirit causing problems to the owner of a mansion – definitely steps ahead from a zombie haunting a house.
So, what was the issue with the film? There have been a whole clump of horror films – rank bad – that’ve been released. Mainstream and within the decade. What made Rahul select this film?
We can say it was the performances. This was Mahakshay’s second film and even the otherwise dependable Arif Zakaria was not in the best of his form. The others were Achint Kaur, Prachi Shah and Tia Bajpai, it was her debut.
From a horror blogger’s point of view, there are several other horror films that Rahul could have picked up. But we do not blame him. After all, horror is still not considered mainstream, it’s a surprise that the guy actually dug into this genre and found a film.
Interestingly, since 2014, there has been news of a sequel to the surprise hit. There is word that Mahakshay will not be part of the film, instead, new actors will play a role in the film.
If you have an interest in mainstream Bollywood, Saamri.com suggests you follow http://www.filmcompanion.in. If there was ever a website that gives you no-nonsense Bollywood, this one is it.