Film Review | Jism 2

Film Review | Jism 2

Sunny side down

Real sex is so scarce in our mainstream books, films or any other form of art that when a huge film poster promises nudity and an adult relationship, the curiosity is unavoidable. Pooja Bhatt’s film Jism 2 releases after a good amount of publicity cashing in on this curiosity. The Bhatts’ Vishesh Films, which has produced Jism 2, does not usually spend very much on publicity. With this film, they have gone all out, and the focus of their publicity drive has be@en one person, American porn star Sunny Leone, who makes her debut as an actor in an Indian film.

On Friday morning at a central Mumbai multiplex, the first day first show of Jism 2 opened to a packed audience. College students in groups and many single-ticket holders, mostly men, thronged the theatre. Sex on screen is promise on a weekday morning.

Unfortunately, there isn’t much sex in it. To the censored, sexless cut, add a dull story, poor performances, tacky dialogues and ordinary visuals, and heap that up with some facile philosophizing about love, terrorism and betrayal. A purposefully executed porn film, which does not release in theatres and therefore does not pander to the hypocrisy of sugar-coating sex with the semblance of storytelling, is a bigger achievement than a mishmash like Jism 2.

Isna is not a character, just an ornament. Of course, the others are not really characters themselves. That Isna is a porn star is incidental in the film—it adds nothing to the story, except that it helps justify why she has sex with every man she is with. We never see her at a film shoot. We see her either crying or heaving, or crying and heaving at the same time—with none of the spunk and cynicism of a real porn star, and virginal innocence about matters of the heart, she is a woman without spite or humour.

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Sunny Leone plays Isna, a pornstar who falls in love with Kabir, RandeepHooda, who is on a secret mission. The movie will extract some unintentional laughs out of you, but that’s pretty much it.

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Hooda is the only actor who has some material to show off some acting, and he tries. But the long, effusive dialogues—of which lines like these are a small part: “Ek terrorist ko marna toh punya hota hai (It’s a good deed to kill a terrorist)" and “Woh swarg hi kya jahaan tum naa ho, woh nark mein darr kya jahaan tum ho (What kind of heaven would it be without you, and what fear of a hell that has you in it)"—and the sheer unbelievability of his character’s circumstance and journey make Hooda’s role a caricature. Leone, as expected, is defined by her hemlines and cleavage. Singh and Zakaria are high-pitched and melodramatic, as the roles require them to be.

Jism 2 will unintentionally extract laughs. At the theatre, the college students created a riot of laughter and the middle-aged men looked deadpan at the screen, realizing they hadn’t got what they came for: some sex scenes.

Jism 2 released in theatres on Friday.

Film Review/ Shuttlecock Boys

A vibrant, lower middle-class neighbourhood, invisible in a city ruthlessly skewed in favour of wealth and social status, clash in obvious ways in this simple Dilli story. Hemant Gaba’s directorial debut Shuttlecock Boys is not a layered narrative about a city, a society or human emotions. Shuttlecock Boys was a guerrilla project made with a small budget and it a took long time for the director to find a theatrical release for it.

Their struggle is predictable and their journey is linear. The film has the earnestness of a diploma film, with a textbook message. There are some beautiful moments and the four debut actors are confident and convincing.

Shuttlecock Boys will not induce happy sighs or tears, but the simple, spirited storytelling makes it worth a watch.

Shuttlecock Boys, a PVR Director’s Rare release,opened in PVR theatres in Mumbai and Delhi on Friday.

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