Saturday, April 21, 2012


Film: Hate Story
Director: Vivek Agnihotri
Cast: Gulshan Devaiah, Paoli Dam, Nikhil Dwivedi
Rating: *1/2
Two things stand out in Hate Story, the song Dil Kaanch Sa and Gulshan Devaiah. If you were expecting that Paoli Dam’s Bollywood debut and overall nudity in the list, this reviewer is not sorry to disappoint you. All disappointment was exhausted while watching Hate Story.
A revenge drama, with generous dollops of erotica, predictable and unconvincing twists, Hate Story is journalist-turned-prostitute Kavya Krishna’s story of hatred towards exploitative, rich Delhi businessman Siddarth ‘Sid’ Dhanrajgir (Gulshan Devaiah). When Kavya, along with Vicky (Nikhil Dwivedi), conducts a sting operation on Sid’s company Cementec, he tries to buy her out by offering her a job in his company. Lured by the enticing offer, she accepts. Then a whole drama of a love/lust affair ensues, revenge after revenge after revenge after… Yawn.
If you walk into Hate Story in the hope of catching clothes shedding, bodies rubbing, silhouettes forming, sweat dripping, you won’t be disappointed. Intimate scenes are aplenty and aesthetically shot. At least they don’t make you wriggle in your seats.
As a viewer, the choices Kavya makes in Hate Story are shrouded in a cloak of mystery. Firstly, why accept Sid’s job offer (when a promising journalistic career beckons), secondly, why turn prostitute to get revenge (well, if you’re so street smart, why won’t you use your brain over body?), thirdly, why shower audiences with a fake sense of empathy (when clearly they don’t care what happens to Kavya!) It’s like the puzzle pieces just don’t fit. Kavya’s way of dealing with things is so overt, it’s repulsive. Paoli’s Bollwyood debut cannot be raved about, but she makes a decent attempt.
On the other hand, Gulshan’s character is suave and well-spoken for the world, but stammers nervously around his father. The underlying conflict is unexposed yet crystal clear. After impressive roles in Shaitan, That Girl In Yellow Boots, Dum Maaro Dum, Gulshan gives yet another terrific performance. But how much could he help salvage writer Vikram Bhatt and director Vivek Agnihotri’s vision? Overall, Hate Story remains a painfully long and worthless thriller.

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