Film, Hindi, Review

1920 London

Upperstall reader Parijat Sarkar reviews 1920 London, and has a blast doing so.

Some movies are inspirational. Some are sources of instant inspiration. This movie belongs to the second category.

The many space starved couples in the auditorium, who were making out and thereby making way better movies (semi-porn, almost, at that) right then and there, bear testimony to this.

Yes. It is that kind of a movie.

The kind which makes teetotalers like me feel like drinking – for the first time – in all these years.

What must be admitted though is that it does justice to its genre – horror. It is a horror show, all right. It makes you cringe with horror at all its attempted scary bits. It probably doesn’t matter what KIND of horror. Sad attempt at finding a silver lining – I know.

The movie is set in London (surprise! surprise!) and Rajasthan (again unsurprising as Rajasthan is the go to destination for horror flicks these days). The happy couple, Veer and Shivangi (Vishal Karwal & Meera Chopra), are living an idyllic life in London until an evil spirit enters Veer’s body and all hell breaks loose. Obviously medical science has no answers to this catastrophe. Cut to Rajasthan, where Shivangi and her family (all played by mostly out of work TV actors who contribute to the ‘horror’) approach a Baba. The baba is played by Gajendra Chauhan – yes, you read that right. GAJENDRA CHAUHAN – what a comeback and what a comeback vehicle. Maa ka Bhoot!

Baba fails to solve the problem. I guess, because, he is played by the awesome FTII chief. I know, I know – we need to move on. He refers them to a bigger Baba (Baba or doctor – guess?) – in fact, the Babaest of all Babas. He turns out to be none other than the dashing & dapper Jai Singh Gurjar (inclusive society and such shit) played by Sharman Joshi (#achhedin not here yet for him). He turns out to be the ex-lover of Shivangi, obviously jilted under extremely sad and suspicious circumstances. Such innovation, much wow, horrified till I die!

Even more obviously, the movie follows the following simple step by step standard operating procedure to take things to a logical conclusion: *almost dies of a coughing fit and feels nose is growing impossibly long, a la Pinochhio*

(Let us call Veer, Meera & Sharman as Derp, Derpina & Herp from here on. Meme lingo is the only hope that can make this interesting)

  • Le Herp & Le Derpina travel to London
  • Le shit happens
  • Le kaala jadoo procedures used to combat shit happen
  • Le Herp dies more
  • Le counter shit happens
  • Le Herp dies a lot more
  • Le counter kaala jadoo
  • Mandatory twist in the tale (if you cant guess this one, you are the suitable audience for such brilliant cinema)
  • Le more counter shit
  • Herp almost dies completely
  • Mandatory climax sequence with le Bhootni, le Herp, le Derpina & nice helpful Mausi/governess type auntyji character (played by Sushmita Mukherjeeye – Kitty from Karamchand. Sad.)

If you cant guess the climax, please refer to parenthesis in point no. 7 above.

Now that we have emerged from the storytelling, albeit with major scars on our soul (awesome horror movie – real impact), let’s look at the various ‘ass-spects’ of this gem.

Direction – Tinu Suresh Desai should not make another movie. Seriously. Ok. Maybe after some serious detox, education and good intent. Just about maybe.

Cast –

Sharman Joshi – Whatever is ailing him is serious (Hate Story 3 and now this). Really serious. Like Ebola level serious. He needs medical help. Oh sorry! Try kaala jadoo, maybe?

Meera Chopra– She belongs to a timber shop. Nice texture, not much lustre, decent durability. That’s about it.

Vishal Karwal – All he did was dimpled smiles and lots of Chakra-asan. Yes, that’s what the Bhootni made him do – Bhootni Mata Ki Jai. No scope. No leverage of the given scope too. Should try his luck in the next Patanjali movie. They don’t make movies? Come on, they will. Very soon, for sure!

Gajendra Chauhan – Steals the show. Completely. Steals the collective conscience of the nation also. This is wrong at so many levels. On a positive side, one does see a glimmer of hope with his entry that this might be a ‘so bad that it is good’ kind of movie. That glimmer is also cruelly extinguished before you can say ‘horror’.

Other insignificants – FTW

Story – What story? Kaala jadoo – really? On a serious note, Vikram Bhatt is suffering from some sort of split personality. Look at his brilliant short stories on facebook (awesome – please check them out) and then look at what he is churning out on the big screen (Love games! 1920 London! Time to leave the world). This is as clichéd and as bad a story as some of the Ramsay flicks. I said it. Yeah, I just did.

Production – It is produced by Reliance Entertainment of the Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group. The brother lives in Antilla. Similar production values. Enough said

Cinematography – Rocking chairs, creaking doors, lemons, blood drops etc. form the crux of the cinematography. Also, ground breaking scientific concepts like anti-matter (lemon controlled remotely by using a pin on a star drawn on the palm – yeah!) and anti-gravity (black blood flows against gravity from body to pipe to bottle and exerts enough pressure to break the bottle – double yeah!) have been finally brought to life. Also, mirrors which are portals that allow one to travel between human world and spirit world. Screw Inception – Nolan is a kid and needs to learn simplicity. Prakash Kutty has effectively put cinematography to rest here.

Music – It is the only thing that is average (the rest are ‘kill me please’ level). Lot of work has been done on the background score but it usually plays the role of being a dead giveaway. Also the romantic numbers are mostly a disruption in the story (not that there is any story but nonetheless). So, while music is average, it leads to bad results in this movie. Murphy’s law is true, after all

Editing – The run time is the only good thing about this movie. I was back in time for lunch!

Lot of good things died with this movie. Let us pay homage. And let us take a solemn pledge to never waste our time. Even if we have to, let us ensure we find better means. Meanwhile, now that it is time to leave this world – where is that darned mirror?


Hindi, Horror, Color


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