Dhund - The Fog (2003)
Shyam Ramsay - Director / Viju Shah - Music
Ibrahim Ashq, Chandrashekhar Rajit, Rakesh Mishra - Lyrics / Running time: 2 hours 26 minutes
While not a reader's request as such, this film was suggested as a candidate for AoM based on a few other reviews out there. I'm glad they made me aware of this film, as it turned out to be a lot of fun to pick on! Today's selection brings to mind a topic that hasn't really been directly addressed here at Army of Monkeys. Namely, the propensity for some Bollywood productions to, and this is putting it mildly, "borrow" plot lines from American films. We saw some of this in Kismat, with several scenes being almost directly lifted from the Brian De Palma film Scarface. Other notable examples of this include Akele Hum, Akele Tum, which is a very direct port of the American movie Kramer vs. Kramer. The previously addressed film Agni Sakshi is a fairly close remake of Sleeping With the Enemy. In fact, there is a website that is dedicated to documenting this phenomenon - BollyCat.com. Admittedly, their take is a little negative, but it is interesting to look at all the other examples.
To bring this around to our subject, Dhund - The Fog is another such remake. Despite the phrase "The Fog" in the title, this is not an Indian take on the John Carpenter film of that name. It is in fact a retelling of the "classic" tale described in the film, I Know What You Did Last Summer. Given as this is a site that only really comments on Indian films, I won't go into too much detail about the source material other than saying IKWYDLS didn't exactly impress me when I saw it on cable. So, we are taking a horror film and injecting the usual romantic sub-plots and musical numbers to result in, well you'll see.
We do have a few repeat performers here, however none of them are in the major roles. Let's have a look.
Arguably the most recognizable star in this movie with two previous appearances on Army of Monkeys is Gulshan Grover. He portrayed the villainous Bhau in Ram Jaane, and the earnest but under qualified Inspector Khurana in Taarzan - The Wonder Car. He's playing another cop in this movie, but the role is virtually identical to that in Taarzan. It probably didn't help that I watched both this movie and Taarzan in the same weekend.
Next up is Tom Alter, last seen here in Asambhav - The Impossible as Brian, Sam Hans' business partner. His role isn't a whole lot bigger in this movie, but hey - it's nice to see a familiar face.
Finally, we have Prem Chopra who played "The Minister" way back in Gupt. Once again, not a huge role in either movie, but credit where it's due and all that!
For this outing, we have on the roster:
|Sameer (Amar Upadhyay) - A photographer / editor for a trendy magazine. He's also the brains behind this operation. We are in trouble. He can make the best "This is serious and fascinating!" faces I've seen to date.|
|Simran (Aditi Govitrikar) - A beauty pageant contestant and occasional model. She's got some unwanted attention that needs to be taken care of.|
|Kunal (Apoorva Agnihotri) - Sameer's best friend and co-worker. This guy will do anything to help Sameer out.|
|Kajal (Divya Palat) - Simran's cousin and close friend. She also has a bad habit of looking directly into the camera.|
|Ajit Khurana (Irrfan) - The bad guy. Quite a good bad guy, if I do say so myself.|
|Tanya Khurana (Shweta Menon) - Ajit's sister, and a beauty pageant rival of Simran's.|
|Tom (Tom Alter) - Well, he's Kunal's uncle, and his name is Tom. There we go.|
|Rajan Malhotra (Prem Chopra) - Kajal's dad/Simran's uncle. In Khanna's description, also "an important industrialist." Impressive!|
|Inspector Khanna (Gulshan Grover) - A close friend of Simran's family who is somewhat susceptible to flattery.|
Yes, I know what you did last summer, and I don't care.