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Ek Villain review: Loving the bad guy

Jun 28 2014, 09:50 IST
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Ek Villain's swinging between drama and melodrama is the Shraddha Kapoor-Sidharth Malhotra starrer's weakness. Ek Villain's swinging between drama and melodrama is the Shraddha Kapoor-Sidharth Malhotra starrer's weakness.
SummaryShraddha Kapoor is getting better, Sidharth Malhotra is watchable but it is Riteish Deshmukh who sweeps the stake in 'Ek Villain'.

Ek Villain movie review

Star Cast: Sidharth Malhotra, Shraddha Kapoor, Riteish Deshmukh, Remo Fernandes

Director: Mohit Suri

Rating: **

There’s one in every love story, says the tagline of ‘Ek Villain’, and the film strains every sinew to justify it. The three main characters- Guru the loveless orphan grown into a gun-toting goon, Aisha the pretty girl busy ticking off items from a to-do list, and Rakesh the smarting-under-daily- humiliations-working-stiff—ricochet off each other, resulting in a film doused in schmaltzy romance and creepy violence.

Mohit Suri has a gift for vivid characterisation, even if some things are underlined a tad too much. He also does a good job with weaving high-octane moments around his characters. So you don’t really twig on to the plot’s hokeyness to begin with, as Guru (Malhotra) encounters the sprightly chatterbox Aisha (Shraddha Kapoor) and the grimness dissolves into softness, and as Rakesh (Riteish Deshmukh) becomes increasingly aware of his oppressed state from one day to another. Then begin a spate of killings, and a race to the bloody finish.

Massive start for 'Ek Villain' box office collections

But soon you start noticing the wooliness of the story, which has more than a passing resemblance to a Korean cult slasher film, as it weaves confusedly back and forth in time, from the singing lovers to the ghastly murders. The tone becomes inconsistent. ‘Ek Villain’s swinging between drama and melodrama is its weakness: the potions I bought into kept me engrossed, and then I was back in those in which I couldn’t suspend disbelief. A cop says: ‘Usne usi jagaah panaah li hai jahaan usne gunaah kiya’: at a mushaira, even a policeman can turn poetic, but alliterating, in the heat of the moment, ‘panaah’ and ‘gunaah’?

This was fine for the 80s Bollywood, when dialogue writers lavished couplets upon cops and robbers and lovers, when heroes slowed down their punches for villains to recite their pun-laden lines for our enjoyment. But now the device smacks of artifice. And it takes away from the performances in this film: apart from the leads, there is a lecher (KRK) firing off tips on how to ‘keep wives in control’. He is effective enough for you to want to keep him away from all women.

Shraddha Kapoor is getting better slowly, and has a couple of high points when the audience laughs with her. Sidharth Malhotra is watchable even if he has a hard time doing

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