Ok its summer time & with the sweltering outside and just IPL-4 going on endlessly on T.V its back to the theatres for a lot many people these days. Sample the multiple releases that have been happening for the last weeks (and which will continue in the coming weeks) and my statement will get vindicated. As usual some movies have turned out good, but may or may not be making money while again some movies have turned out to be average fare or even plain bad and may or may not be making money. But the fact remains that the public has a lot of choice on hand now, thanks to the multiple films on offer in your neighborhood multiplex/theatre.
So knowing this we have producer Ekta Kapoor doing what she’s really good at- coming up with a product which has the right amount of backing as well. The product is none other than this week’s release – Ragini MMS. As we all know through Balaji Telefilms Ltd & ALT Entertainment Ekta Kapoor has been trying to come up with fare that’s different from what she offers to us on television. And with movies as diverse as LSD, Once Upon A Time In Mumbai, Shor In The City etc we’ve come to expect that the trend will continue. With LSD Dibakar Banerjee and Ekta Kapoor dispelled a lot of myths- they proved if something interesting is tried then even a very small budget film with no known names can really succeed at the box-office. In the process they also came up with a totally new way of story telling for the Indian audience.
So keeping the success of LSD in mind I’m sure Ragini MMS was created to cash in on the formula and try and exploit even more. This time the elements involved were sleaze and horror- something that has always appealed to a large section of the audience. And by tagging along with the concept of shooting a sex video discretely, the makers have only tried to make the prospects look even more impressive. After all MMS scandals have been doing the rounds across the country for the last few years and even LSD had looked at the same in its own unique way.
So the plot (for those unaware at least J) goes something like this- Uday (Raj Kumar Yadav, seen in the supermarket segment of LSD) and his girlfriend Ragini (Kainaz Motivala) take off on a weekend to a desolate mansion a little outside Mumbai (Dahanu for those interested), which supposedly belongs to Uday’s friend. While both Uday and Ragini are both looking forward to a great weekend (no prizes for guessing what would keep them occupied) there’s also something that Ragini is unaware of. Uday has in liaison with his friend/benefactor rigged up the mansion with cameras all over the place in order to get a juicy video of course.
But there is something that even Uday isn’t aware of and that is the fact that there is an unknown element in the mansion too besides Uday, Ragini & the cameras of course. So just when Uday & Ragini decide to get wild and have a great time, that’s when they realize that there’s something else in store for them, which was not what they had in mind at all. So the from the kinky to the bizarre there’s just a thin line apparently and that’s what we are exposed to for the rest of the film. The film obviously borrows its premise not from one source- but from various sources. The MMS angle is from LSD of course and the film even pays tribute to it in its own way. Then there is the obvious inspiration from Paranormal Activity for the basic premise of the couple in a ‘haunted’ house and wait, wait there are also obvious tributes to /inspirations from The Blair Witch Project and even 127 Hours.
But if Paranormal Activity was subtle and left the audience to imagine a lot, the makers of Ragini MMS meanwhile decide that its better to spoon feed us and the result is there to see in the 2nd half. Leaving aside all the inspirations mentioned earlier the film clearly also steps into the RGV school of horror in the 2nd half in terms of the style used including the BGM. After a while you even stop wondering if it’s going to get scary and rather focus on laughing unexpectedly at a lot of places. Having said this I must admit that the casting of the lead pair has been spot on .Raj Kumar Yadav takes on a role which has shades similar to that of what he portrayed in LSD, only that he manages to pull it off in style.
That pseudo cool nature displayed coupled with his roughness (seen both in his language and also demeanor) makes him come across as very natural. Heck you even feel at a point as to why would someone like Ragini go around with him J and that’s a triumph in itself. But after LSD and now Ragini MMS there’s a strong danger of Raj Kumar getting typecast and lets see if he’s able to overcome it. Kainaz on the other hand looks extremely vulnerable and very much the object of desire, both qualities that go in favour for her as far the role demands. Even in the 2nd half when the focus is more on her, she manages to keep us hooked, not bad for someone in her first film.
The debate will always continue on whether all the hype was warranted and if the film is actually a trendsetter of sorts. What I feel here is that the makers realized that they had a winning formula and coupled with the fact that they probably made this on an extremely shoe string budget, they had all the more reasons to spend on promoting the film. As for being a trendsetter, well with originality hardly being exhibited I wouldn’t say that the movie is a torchbearer or anything as such but seen as a summer Coke & Pop-Corn entertainer, it’s less likely to disappoint you.
To watch it or not is purely a matter of choice and depends on which way you look at it.