Free Press Journal

Ek Haseena Thi Ek Deewana Tha: Review, Cast, Director, Story


Cast: Shiv Darshan, Upen Patel, Natasha Fernandez

Director: Suneel Darshan

Our Indian film industry won’t give up on nepotism even if the subsequent luxuriously designed product fails to rouse interest while also creating a hole in big Daddy’s pockets. Suneel Darshan’s attempt to foist his inept son Shiv Darshan, on the audience is another such failed attempt at forced glorification. The title is borrowed from a popular song in Subhash Ghai’s hit reincarnation musical drama Karz. But the foisted association doesn’t feel or play lucky at all.

The story is as antiquated as the hills and seems to have been resurrected from a moth-eaten screenplay that went out of fashion way back in the sixties. With four writers cooking it, including Suneel Darshan himself, alongside Kushal Ved Bakshi, Akash Deep and Uddeept Dutt Gaur (writing and dialogues) you can well imagine what the eventual broth would taste like.

The story could well be written on a square parchment – that’s as much content that shows up here. Natasha (Natasha Fernandez), a wealthy heiress and her fiancé Sunny (Upen Patel) visit her ancestral home where she comes in contact with Deodhar (Shiv Darshan) and their attraction to each other seems pre-ordained.

Is he aatma or is he real? And his very presence harkens back to a past life that spells confusion and doom for want of narrative coherence. The paranormal twist hints at a darkness from the past, The Dangerous Ishq is spiced up and further complicated with attempts to kill the golden goose.

That Suneel Darshan did not learn any lessons from Vikram Bhatt’s debacle is a story in itself.  And the resulting fracas is a whodunit that defies logic and explanation.

Generic twists, contrived turns and fanciful theatrics ensue while the bucolic beauty of the English countryside tempts the naked eye – much more than the staccato non-actors in the frame. The audience, of course, will not be bothered because there’s nothing thrilling and no one compelling here.

The cinematography by Amarjeet Singh (only an inept cameraman could have gone wrong here) and the music by Nadeem Saifi of hit duo Nadeem-Shravan fame (making a comeback while sitting in Dubai) are the only two elements that stay with you – at least for a brief while. It would be better if you see G Kutta Se and A Death in the Gunj instead. They certainly deserve more viewers than this faltering, inept reincarnation of a musical romance!