Creaky doors are out. Rustles in the jungle are in. Like all capable spook sojourns, "Kaal" takes a bit of time to grow on you. But once you fall into the fearful rhythm, you are in for a rollicking scare.
"Kaal" shows us how it is to be done, without degrading the genre or stepping too hard and fast on those peripheral scares. The best thing debutant director Soham Shah has done is to take his ingenious plot into the great wild outdoors.
Unlike Ram Gopal Varma's "Jungle", which used bizarre camera movements to stress the predatory mood in the wilderness, "Kaal" lets you into the secrets of the jungle without getting technically complicated.
There's a directness to the deft and dark terror treatise as Vivek Oberoi, Lara Dutta, John Abraham and Esha Deol, plus a couple of other wacky friends (Kushal Punjabi and Vishal Singh) and two scowling chauffeurs manoeuvre their cars into the quaky kingdom - shot in a wildlife sanctuary.
The film starts with an ecologist (John Abraham) expressing concern over the growing extinction of tigers.