Saturday, April 09, 2016

review: LOVE GAMES

'Roses Are Red, Violets Are Blue,
Sex Is Messy, Love Can Be Too!'

1 star

Mini Review:

When the cheesy headline actually plays as a song loud and proud, in the movie, you have a sneaky feeling that you are being had. That the director might be playing a prank on you and you are watching a parody erotica. But there are so many illogical convoluted twists you realise that they're serious. It offers many unintentional moments of laughter.

Main Review:

Imagine someone injecting a strong dose of muscle relaxant into your lips. And in the lips of someone you wanted to kiss. And then you both tried to kiss. 

The result would be what you will see Ramona and Sam do on the screen. 

It's not erotic. Not even remotely. So you start wondering if the filmmakers playing an elaborate joke on you and when Ramona calls Sam 'Jittery Pants', you have to try real hard to not imagine anything cartoon-like. 

Let me be honest here. I actually liked the premise: When loving gets dull, add a bit of spice, maybe even a dangerous challenge to resuscitate the relationship. And things never go as planned, do they? 

It could have been a cool erotic thriller. But they choose to go, 'We're page 3, dude! Like, seriously!' 

So there's penthouse apartments, rave parties, Gucci bags, and high heeled stilettos (make the women walk as though they were camels), blingy mini dresses, multiple coke snorting scenes, psychiatrists...

Sam is so bored in his affair with already married (and recently widowed) Ramona that he goes back to cutting himself with nearest handy piece of glass. Ramona asks,'Have you read the book 'Love Game?'

Sam who looks like he works really hard at the gym (where he lost his comb)and has no time to read books. He answers truthfully, 'No.'

Ramona's perpetually dilated pupils dilate even more and she explains to background music that makes us believe she is naagin!

'We go to a party and choose the happiest couple. You seduce the wife and I the husband. As proof of seduction we send each other a video. Whoever uploads video first, wins. Loser has to buy a week's supply of cocaine for the winner.'

Of course the lad wins. Ramona is pissed off. Threatens she is never going to let him go, and even shoots at him a couple of times because he cannot stop laughing and crowing about his win. Of course they kiss in anger. It looks more like people slurping up a bowl of pho rather than two people kissing passionately. But this is erotica, so maybe they kiss like that in farmhouses and penthouses, so you wait until the camera pans away to next couple.

The famous criminal lawyer husband (Hiten Tejwani from TV soaps) is a jealous, abusive husband of a pretty woman who comes back from a party alone to his wrath. Boss, if you are jealous, then you'd better keep your wife at home and in a burqua, no? Why would you throw her out of the house for going to a party and then wake the poor gal up (she's sleeping in the car) only to order her to 'wear something nice to tonight's party'. 

Turns out, Ramona and Sam have chosen them to be the next victims. And both leave party with them separately. Ramona with Hiten to the farmhouse and Sam to... Wait! To the hospital! He discovers pretty woman is woman of substance (and not just a substantial rack encased in bling), a surgeon, no less! She is smart enough to guess his seduction routine and tells him off. And to keep us interested in her body, takes her blouse off, shows us her lacy bra and then red welts from 'I am afraid of my powerful husband...'

Sam is now in love. Much to the chagrin of Ramona. The plot gets convoluted when Ramona tries to separate them by telling the husband. The husband throws alcohol at another party over wife's head and threatens to kill her. Sam brings miserable pretty woman to guest house and tells her she is safe. 'I have kept shampoo in the bathroom and have switched the geyser on.'

You are digesting the banality of that dialog when bad things just happen and we see Ramona get into more hissy fits. Now Sam is not even making out with her (are we at the beginning of the movie, then?) and then we wake up from the banality when we hear:

'Tum toh fire brigade ban gaye ho. You come only in emergencies!'

Conscious that we are watching an erotica, this statement makes you turn to the person sitting next to you and hi-five, 'She said 'coming'!

Then it gets better and better as Ramona tries all her little blackmailing tricks. 'Let's make lust on the carpet when pretty girl surgeon is asleep on the bed,' Ramona says.

'What if she wakes up?' Sam is horrified.

'Then you'll be dead. Dee-Ee-Dee, dead!' Ramona spells out in glee.

When we recover from her spelling abilities, we see that there are deaths. But only because surgeon is truly fed up of her husband and Ramona of the lovesick Sam. Instead of Sam, the surgeon dies. We cackle in mirth as we see poor Sam cry his acting career into hell. But then we remember the house rule: heroines in Hindi movies cannot die.

There's more twists and turns in the plot than the Western ghats. In spite of 'I love lust, Sam', 'I'll give you one day for rona-dhona', 'I like sunbathing with a dead body, but I'll help you push a car off the cliff', all ends well for the surgeon and Sam. 

You come away wondering how you would use the phrase 'Jittery Pants' in a sentence in real life.

p.s. Had this film been made with a little more finesse, it could have been a watchable thriller. 

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