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29 October 2014

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Director: Prawaal Raman
Tusshar Kapoor, Antara Mali, Raghuveer Yadav, Rasika Joshi, Ramman Trikha, Govind Namdeo
2hrs 18mins
Film information:
Contains moderate violence
UK Release: 16th July 2004 by Yash Raj Films
u cert camera
Tusshar Kapoor & Antara Mali in Gayab

Gayab brings memories of the Hollywood film, The Invisible Man (1933).

But does this Bollywood version create the same magic on the audience?
Read on…


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The film opens on Vishnu Prasad (Tusshar Kapoor), a clumsy character who feels insecure about life due to his upbringing.

He always gets teased by everyone because he simply cannot get things right. Worse of all, no one notices that he even exist.

Lets say, Vishnu Prasad is a nervous wreck with no fault of his own. That's because, he is constantly nagged by his domineering mum, who seems to be the boss of the house. Vishnu's father is too soft and scared to challenge his wife.

The only ray of sunshine in Vishnu's life is Mohini (Antara Mali), who lives in the next apartment building. Sameer is her boyfriend but that doesn't deter Vishnu to be Mohini's secret admirer.

Vishnu, being his clumsy self, accidentally winks at Mohini on one fine day. All hell breaks loose as a result of this incident - he gets humiliated by Sameer.

So a dejected Vishnu burst into tears and seeks comfort in a secluded place. In his moments of despair, he comes across an unusual statue.

As he holds it in his hands, he wishes that he became invisible. To his shock and horror, he really becomes invisible.

Initially, he doesn't like the power he has acquired but later realises that he can use this to his advantage.

The film focuses on how Vishnu takes revenge on those who made life hell for him all these years.

One would expect lots of comedy scenes from here on as Vishnu runs havoc but sadly this is no where to be seen.

All we get, are glimpses of flying objects which signifies the presence of Vishnu.

Ram Gopal Verma fans will have notice that Gayab has been inspired by the short story Stop, in Darna Mana Hai.

Strangely enough, both were directed by Prawaal Raman. But unlike Stop, Gayab does not have the same impact due to its length.

It seems that the writers didn't have enough ideas and material to sustain the audiences attention throughout its 2hrs 18mins run in the cinemas.

Gayab belongs to Tusshar. His performance is amazing. He easily portrays the various shades of Vishnu's character from a vulnerable boy to a person with vengeance with great ease.

Antra Mali disappoints here. Her performance in Main Madhuri Dixit Banta Chahti Hoon is no way near in Gayab.

She does her Urmila Matondkar act as the camera zooms on her body. But then again, that would be expected as it's a Ram Gopal Verma production!

Cinematography is good considering that we are looking at the subject of invisibility but at times it becomes inconsistent - the special effects do not appear to be on par.

Having said this Gayab is a good entertainer all round. It will do well, considering that the school summer holidays are upon us. Its a good film to while away the time with the kids. But don't expect a Hum Tum or a Main Hoon Naa!

Reviewed by Manish Gajjar,
BBC Shropshire's Mr Bollywood
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