By Subhash K Jha
Film: Ragini MMS 2
Stars: Sunny Leone, Divya Dutta, Pravin Dabbas
Director: Bhushan Patel
BOLLYWOOD: At least the first Ragini film gave us a sparkling performance by Rajkummar Rao, then called Yadav.This was the time when Rajkummar’s Shahid was not even conceived. He was a ‘despo’, much like the character of Ragini MMS2.
What did I come away with from Ragini MMS 2?
A sinking feeling that the horror genre has run its course. Boredom is a beast that director Bhushan Patel is not up to fighting. Sex is brought in to liven up the semi-dead spirits. Steamy scenes are stuffed into this scare-fest since Sunny Leone top-lines the cast.
The script has been tailored to accommodate the lewd…sorry, lead’s porn background. So when the film crew visits the same haunted house where the first Ragini film unfolded (why make the same mistake twice?!), Sunny Leone – all voluptuous and popping all over the place – fakes an orgasm and tells an obnoxious fellow actor that porn actresses too can act.
They sure can. Leone in her third Bollywood film puts in quite an effort to look possessed by an evil chudail. To be fair to this fornicating fraulein on an image-mending binge, the last half-hour finds Leone going into convulsions of terror. It’s a climactic performance that pines to tell us that porn stars can act. Point made.
Leone is always good with climaxes. We can now move to the rest of the film which slithers through the hall of absurdity with a terrifying non-chalance. We have characters deliberately moving deeper and deeper into the darkest shadows of the haunting house inviting sure death. If you are so dumb as to go into empty rooms with creaky doors, then you might as well be dead.
Why are the characters in our horror films so intellectually challenged? Ragini MMS 2 is specially suffused with morons. There is a hammy television actor who takes a naked shower with Ms Leone (once a porn star) and then later jerks off in bed. He is so gross because guys in the Ragini series are destined to be just that. In Ragini MMS1 Rajkummar Rao dragged his girlfriend to a haunted house to shoot a dirty MMS with her. In this instalment, there is an over-the-top film director (the talented Praveen Dabas) who wants to make a ‘horrex’ (a blend of horror and sex , much the same as the director of Ragini MMS2) .
Dabas barges into Leone’s bedroom and barks, ‘Say you want me to f…k you.’ Really! Is this the way directors talk to their leading ladies while making ‘horrex’ films? No wonder the Ramsays were savagely pulled up in Ashim Ahluwalia’s Miss Lovely.
Ragini MMS2 is so enamoured by its luscious leading lady’s lusty past that it doesn’t know what it wants to be. Neither horrifying nor sexy, the film is like a conflicted schizophrenic seeking a closure to his identity crisis blocking out the sunlight from all the windows in his home and running around in circles all over his darkened home.
Watching Ragini MMS2 is like playing Russian Roulette with the lights off. You know someone is pulling the trigger and trying to fire random shots at unidentified victims. Every trick from the horror genre is brought into use. By the time Divya Dutta is brought in as the latest avatar of Max von Sydow from The Exorcist the devil is too far gone to be tamed.
And I don’t mean the chudail in this film.