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'Love Games' review: Dangerous Intentions!

'Love Games' review: Dangerous Intentions!

Source: General

By: Sonia Chopra

Critic's Rating: 3/5

Tuesday 12 April 2016

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Movie Title

'Love Games' review: Dangerous Intentions!

Director

Vikram Bhatt

Star Cast

Gaurav Arora, Tara-Alisha Berry, Patralekha

If you've seen films like the exquisite Dangerous Liaisons and the more mainstream Cruel Intentions, you'll find a striking resemblance with our film here. All these films delve in the love and lust sports played by people, often lacking love in their lives.

Read more: Sardaar Gabbar Singh review | The Jungle Book review | Jacobinte Swargarajyam review | Jithan 2 review

In Love Games, two people with challenging childhoods (the recent Bollywood go-to reason for all things evil) come together for a sinful sport. Sam (Gaurav Arora) is Ramona's (Patralekha) boy-toy, whom she is possessive about. Together they make pacts, zero in on a target couple, and lay bets on who'll get the targets to bed first.

While Ramona enjoys this damaging roller-coaster life as a drug-junkie, with casual sex throw in, Sam plays along. He is also in the habit of cutting himself to "feel something", a condition which a doctor solemnly describes as SH meaning 'Self-Harm'.

Sam falls for the said doctor named Alisha Asthana (Tara Alisha Berry), a beauteous lady who also happens to be the battered wife of a powerful lawyer. Both Sam and the audience cannot understand why this said doctor chooses to remain in the abusive marriage, instead of trying to overcome the fear.

Sam turns knight in shining armour for this damsel in distress who sobs, "I am helpless" before falling into his arms. She finds a support, and he finds a distraction from all the self-harm. Over time, they fall in love. All this is much to the annoyance of big-haired, high-heeled, and always heavily made-up Ramona.

And so begins another "love game", this time with trite twists and murders thrown in.

The dialogue has lines like, "Life's not worth living, till you have someone to die for" and the like. A character tells another, "You are good at murder" as if complementing on playing the piano. Yet another dialogue describes the two women in Sam's life as classical piano and hard rock!

There is a sparse sprinkling of interesting scenes. One particularly amusing one is someone playing Candy Crush on the phone, as their murder victim writhes in pain. Another one, when a near escape from the cops has the character excited more than worried.

Performances are promising, but inconsistent. Patralekha (CityLights) is particularly fun to watch as the femme fatale, despite the cliched characterization of a woman desiring sex shown as unstable and evil. Gaurav Arora (he makes his debut with the film), and Tara Alisha Berry (Mastram) are earnest, but let down by seriously sketchy characterization and improbable turn of events.

Director Vikram Bhatt puts in steamy lip-locks in the film, perhaps the film's sole selling point. But why does an erotic thriller have to be such a mess with over-the-top characters, implausible developments, sketchy execution (a small push leads the car to leap off the cliff and into the air) and a finale that is as outrageous as it is predictable.

The last line of the song during the film's finale gives off a rather disturbing message, basically encouraging people to kill those (bad asses, the film calls them) that come in their way. Shudder!

Rating: 1.5 stars

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