Love Games….Viewers wont play!

In Indian cinema, films with sex based themes have been made for a long time now but were initially branded as C grade. Initially, they made their inroads into Hindi cinema as dubbed films with Malayalam films having explicit sex themes dubbed in Hindi. And since their main audience was in the small towns in the interiors, interpolation of footage from porn films was a much used practice. Such films found their target audience mainly during night shows.

But with the interior theatres mostly demolished and the multiplex culture having taken over, sex oriented films are made in the guise of high society comedies or life behind the scenes. Some finesse and glamour quotient is added and Bhatt camp has a knack for making such themes.

Films have grown from swapping car keys or room keys to swapping wives. ‘Love Games’ has a similar theme. Except that the protagonists are not spouses.

Patralekha is young and recently widowed. But she is a nymphomaniac and needs sex regularly. This she finds in her bedmate Gaurav Arora, the son of a wealthy tycoon with a shaky life. Things appear fine but Patralekha is arrogant and lusty. So for her, Gaurav is useful only to fulfill her sexual urge. However, the two decide to seek some adventure.

 They decide to play a game which they call Love Games. The idea is to target married couples with the aim of scoring with both of them: Patralekha with the husband and  Gaurav with the wife. Whoever scores first will be the winner while the loser will source the supply of drugs for a week.

In the process of playing this game, Gaurav finds love in Tara Alish Berry, a doctor married to criminal lawyer HitenTejwani. The feelings are mutual between the two as Gaurav is a lonely introvert soul while Tara suffers from an abusive husband. Gaurav does not need to play love games now. This is something Patralekha is not ready to accept. But she is not giving up yet and decides to plan one last love game involving all four of them.

Expectedly, the film has enough lovemaking scenes. However, the story does not deliver a surprise though that would be expected from the filmmakers. The direction has nothing to write home about. Editing needed to be slicker. Dialogue is mundane. Cinematography is good. Musically, a couple of songs sound good. As for acting, all the four main actors seem enthusiastic but the only one who manages to do perform well is Tara.

Love Games lacks face value and poor opening response. Bad reports will only add to its box office prospects.

Producers: Mahesh Bhatt, Mukesh Bhatt.

Director: Vikram Bhatt.

Cast: Gaurav Arora, Patralekha, Tara Alish Berry, HitenTejwani.


Club Dancer…Poor fare.

Club Dancer, the film, involves the name from a name from the renowned film industry family, the Mukherji clan. However, the film looks like an exercise to launch the female lead Nisha Mavani since right from the title to the extensive footage, everything is focused on her. As far as the story goes, the film offers nothing that has not been seen before in films like Satte Pe Satta (1982), Jhutha Sach (1984) et al.  

Nisha is a night club dancer in Mumbai whose parents Shakti Kapoor and Zarina Wahab live in Punjab. Not wanting to shock her parents by telling them what she does, she has lied to them that she is happily married and working. But her lie lands her in trouble as Kapoor has a heart attack and plans to arrive in Mumbai for further treatment.

Not wanting her neighbours to talk, she borrows her boss’ bungalow to present it to her parents as her own house. There is a bit of another film here – B R Chopra’s Ittefaq (1969) - as dangerous contract killer Rajbeer Singh walks into her house after killing the local chief minister with the police chasing him. He forces her to provide him shelter at gunpoint. She has no alternative as Singh is a gangster with a violent temper.

When Singh seeks shelter for a period till things cool down, she makes a deal with him: he would act as her husband while her parents are around. That done, the film’s pace slows and it meanders till interval when Singh is seen being shot by the ACP, something Nisha does not know.

NIsha is now a worried woman - with Kapoor’s bypass surgery on the anvil and his ‘son in law’ absent. However, she need not have worried at all since the scriptwriters can always visit the archives, borrow some characters from the past. So, another Singh lookalike emerges from nowhere. While the earlier one sported a beard and an uncouth long hair, this one has none of that and is rather suave.

Nisha fallsin love with the new Singh but he is indifferent. He goes back to Goa where he came from: but most such films have a happy ending.

Borrowing from ideas from films of the 1980s is fine but slaughter their value instead of improving upon them is sacrilege. Scripting is unimaginative. Direction is purely amateurish. Dialogues are pedestrian and the musical score is out of sync. Nisha’s acting is copybook and tutored, Singh has presence but no acting and, what is worse, he tries to be a Sunjay Dutt clone. Zarina is okay but casting Kapoor is a joke.

The others overact in an effort to be noticed.

Club Dancer has been released at limited screens but offers no hope.

Producer: Shubir Mukerji.

Director: B Prasad.

Cast: Nisha Mavani, Rajbeer Singh, Shakti Kapoor, Zarina Wahab.

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