wogma rating: Watch if you have nothing better to do (?)
It horrifies for sure. Both by its thrills and its insensitive take on religion. Decent special effects cannot help forgive extreme irresponsibility in this age of communal riots.Read more
I've grown up fighting my fears by reciting the Hanuman Chalisa. Over time I grew into a person who believes that God doesn't need my praise to take care of me. I believe He exists and that's all I need to know. Yet I respect all who find peace of mind from performing rituals. BUT, when followers of one religion try to even imply that their religion is superior to another, I lose all respect for them. And that's what happened with 1920. I couldn't believe it when one religion succeeds at doing something that the other couldn't!
So much so that I feel like taking points away from all the repulsive yet thrill-inducing quivers it successfully got out of me on the way to the climax. The finale though, just completely ruined whatever it was building up towards, by being both lame and offensive. Sure, the movie can be taken as a man's journey of losing and regaining his faith. But at the cost of demeaning someone else's belief - unacceptable!
There isn't any special craft involved in the writing of the two distinct stories that make this movie either. Unrequited love and undying love brings havoc and redeems soul respectively. There are a few creative lines strewn around but nothing remarkable about the effort as a whole.
Just when the deadpan expressions of both the lead actors, Rajneesh Duggal and Adah Sharma, and the haggard pace were beginning to bring a yawn, the story began inching forward. And I was in complete awe of the many ways in which Adah's body managed to contort, turn, wiggle, and squirm. Her facial muscle movements, make-up, and the special effects all contributed to both the disgust I felt towards the ghost possessing her and how sorry I felt for her character. Rajneesh's face and eyes on the other hand remained blank. Points for consistency?
The only things I knew about the movie beforehand were that it's set almost a century ago, and that it belongs to the horror genre. Horror translates to shrill background music and weird camera work, so I was all prepared for that. But, I was pleasantly surprised. In fact the opening sequence had very little music for accompaniment. An eerie ambience was created, alright.
Yet, it didn't escape the standard questions one would have of ever-predictable Hindi horror movies. How come a person who turns out to be dissatisfied enough after death invariably resides in a mansion? What stops this ghost from getting out of the mansion? In this particular case it wasn't as if this ghost was attached to the mansion? I guess, a haunted mansion makes more movie-worthy material than a haunted shanty.
But, the main glaring, making me fume question remains - How? How can one make such an insensitive movie about religion when it's being used to commit so many atrocities to serve God-alone-knows-what agenda? Freedom of expression, huh? Irresponsible usage - I say...
- meeta, a part of the audience
So-So, by J K Yaduvanshi, Deccan Herald : ...sometimes script seems to have been manipulated for the special effects that come at the cost of the story to give the audience a moment’s hair-raising experience.... full review
So-So, by Martin D'souza, Glamsham.com : ...He shoots in London and tells you that that piece of irresistible architectural beauty, the castle he is shooting in, is somewhere in India. Very, very annoying.... full review
So-So, by Renuka Vyavahare, indiatimes : ... the film may be Bhatt’s most brilliant film till date in terms of its cinematography but lacks originality in terms of direction and story telling.... full review
So-So, by Sonia Chopra, Sify Movies : ...Cinematography (Pravin Bhatt) is quick to change from painting the frame with picturesque beauty to bringing out the horror through lighting and angles... full review
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This page has additional observations, other than the ones noted in the main review.
An architect, Arjun Singh Rathod (Rajneesh Duggal), is called upon to renovate a mansion into a hotel. He takes his wife, Lisa (Adah Sharma), along. This is all set in 1920. Turns out the mansion is haunted...