April 17, 2005

Bollywood Film Review: Humraaz (2002)


Rating: A-


  • Akshaye Khanna's performance as a villain
  • A couple excellent music and song sequences... and the others aren't so bad either
  • Amisha Patel's hotness and her hot wardrobe
  • Intriguing and fresh story line (for Bollywood, at least)


  • The fighting is cheesy, but at least there's fighting
  • The minor characters don't really add anything (except for Harry). Once again, Johnny Lever proves to be unnecessary, but at least he's less annoying here than usual.
  • The "romantic" parts slow down the movie and create too much time between elaboriate dance sequences and/or brutal murders
  • What? No rain song!?

You can get mp3's of all the songs at bollyfm.net

This is one of my personal favorites... as much for being bad as for being good. It has great songs, romance, intrigue and three of the most gory deaths I've seen in Bollywood. What a winning combo! It also has one of my all-time favorite Bollywood film conventions: the dance troupe. For a while, I was under the impression that every 20-somethingish male in India had his own dance troupe, for which he could select and then marry the hottest girl he could find. Sounds like a good M.O. to me.

fire dance.jpgKaran and Priya heat up the dance floor
raj and priya.jpegAt Priya's wedding reception

Humraaz (I think it means "Our Secret") is about Karan (Akshaye Khanna) and Priya (the hot Amisha Patel), a poor cute couple and the stars of a new Bombay dance troupe. Karan and Priya hope their troupe gets selected for an upcoming cruise and Karan is willing to kill for the chance to make dreams of wealth and success to come true. On the ship, Priya naturally attracts the eye of the business tycoon who owns the cruiseline, Raj (Bobby Deol). Raj wines and dines Priya, throws a better birthday party for her than Karan, and eventually gives her a shockingly big engagement ring. Priya goes to tell Karan, who must be heartbroken... but is he? What will Raj do when he finds out about the real nature of of Karan and Priya's relationship? or their plans? Eventually, a movie that starts out with classic Bollywood romance and fun songs, turns into "A Perfect Murder." Who will Priya choose? Who will come out alive? Whooo... the suspense is killing me.

scary karan.jpg
What is Karan hiding?

Karan and Raj face off; do blood stains ruin a bridal saree?

In addition to the great songs and dance sequences, the three main actors give excellent performances. Akshaye usually plays spoiled rich-boy lovers (and appeared as himself in Bollywood/Hollywood), but he makes a great villain in this film... the kind that you genuinely hate. But Amisha Patel is the best part about this film. She has to be at her hottest because we have to believe Raj would instantly fall for her and she has some gorgeous sarees in this film.

Amisha: a little sugar, a little spice

bipasha amisha.jpg
Just for fun:
Bipasha Basu(Bollywood's sexist starlet) and Amisha

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