With his disastrous remake of the classic Sholay only a week old, Ram Gopal Varma continues his losing streak with another sub-standard thriller. This time the focus isn't the underworld but the director's other pet subject, the supernatural. Fardeen Khan plays a philandering husband whose former mistress (Esha Deol) comes back to haunt him. A cross between a ghost and love story, sadly this neat little idea of a movie is dragged out too long to maintain suspense.
Bearing a suitably scary expression and costume to match, the usually cardboard Esha Deol breathes life into Geeta, the feisty secretary and secret girlfriend of company boss Aditya (Khan) who is accidentally killed during a lovers tiff. Too scared to confess to the catastrophe, Aditya picks up the shovel and buries his 'darling' ex in a shallow grave besides a friends' beach house where their fateful rendezvous takes place. Her body may be six feet under, but Aditya soon realises that it's going to take more than a few layers of soil to keep Geeta's restless soul out of his sight when she resurfaces in his home and workplace.
"TWISTS AND TURNS CAN BE SEEN A MILE OFF"
Half an hour into the film Varma cleverly switches from horror to dark comedy as Deol torments and humiliates Khan in front of his unsuspecting wife (Isha Koppikar) and colleagues. However, it's not just Inspector Reddy (Upendra Limaye) and his silent sidekick assistant who smell a rat in Aditya's strange behaviour as he struggles to cope with Geeta's unusual form of revenge. The comical twists and turns can be seen a mile off by all, and it's pretty much downhill towards the predictable conclusion once Deol's wronged spirit starts seeking justice teenager style. A spooky tale with unfulfilled potential.
Darling is out in the UK on 7th September 2007.