If there is anything that assures you that this will be a decent movie, it’s the title - ANAMIKA. In 1973, this Jaya Bhaduri-Sanjeev Kumar starrer was a hit. This is where director Ananth Mahadevan whets the appetite of the viewer. But 10 minutes into this film and you know you are in for a snooze-fest.
What Mahadevan could have finished telling off in one reel, he prolongs for 14 painful reels. And he has no semblance of a clue of how to hold the suspense. Even when it unfolds, you want to ask him, “Mr, if this was all there was to it, why was not Dino opening his mouth and telling his second wife Minissha at the first instance. Or, why was not Minissha asking him how his first wife died, instead of jumping into marriage with a man she has just met?
If Alfred Hitchcock could hold the viewers spellbound with his 1940 classic REBECCA, it was because he wove the scenes together skillfully and kept the viewers on the edge of his seat, guessing until the last moment. Mahadevan, who has borrowed heavily from Hitchcock, fails to understand how to glue the viewer. A bad take-off on the classic, which won two Oscars.
Here is the story: Dino Morea (Vikram Singh Sisodiya) a rich industrialist from Rajasthan comes to Mumbai for a business meeting and requests the services of an escort who actually will be his secretary for the day. Minisha Lamba (Jia) who is employed by the escorts service makes a hash of her job, which prompts Dino to train her to be a good escort. Before the day ends, he has proposed marriage, and she has accepted. Next she moves on to his palatial bungalow where she is introduced to the caretaker Koena Mitra and other support staff who do nothing but always refer to the dead Mrs Sisidoya (Anamika). “She would have preferred it this way”, and “she would have done it this way…” Everything in the mansion has her stamp “A” and Jia is trapped, until she musters enough courage to say that she is Mrs Sisodiya. Both try to save their marriage by burying the ghost of the past and by a twist of fate, are led to the body of Anamika.
Watching Dino perform you would not be able to make out the difference between BRAHM, released recently and ANAMIKA. Same expressions, same mood, same walk. Wake up Dino! Minissha, I guess, is quite confused as to how she landed this role, oops into the palace! As for Koena, they say she is the caretaker and Dino’s childhood friend. But what about her ancestors? How did she come about being the caretaker? What about her parents? Mahadevan decides that it is not required. But he has enough time to build up her character. Instead, he ends up using her as a chandelier. Only Gulshan Grover acts.
TO GO OR NOT: Buy a DVD of the Sanjeev Kumar-Jaya Bhaduri starrer and top it with the Hitchcock classic.