1920 – EVIL RETURNS Review


ASA Production & Enterprises Pvt. Ltd. and BVG Films’ 1920 – Evil Returns (A) is the second horror film in the 1920 franchise. Smriti (Tia Bajpai) is informed by her house help, Bhola (Sanjay Sharma), that Jaidev Verma (Aftab Shivdasani), a renowned shayar who was to marry her two years ago, has become a loner. Jaidev had, two years ago, been informed of Smriti’s death and while his head believes it, his heart can’t. He is unable to get Smriti out of his mind and spends his entire day drinking. Bhola prods Smriti to leave her house and go to Jaidev. Since Smriti is held captive in the house by an evil spirit, Bhola gives Smriti a small mirror, given to him by a temple priest, saying that the mirror would keep the evil spirits away from her.

Although the mirror breaks on the way, Smriti does manage to reach Jaidev’s house in an unconscious state when he notices her lying in that state and takes her home. Smriti and Jaidev are drawn towards each other but Smriti has lost her memory and doesn’t know how she reached there. She, therefore, does not remember a thing about her past including the fact that Jaidev and she were to marry. Jaidev had never seen Smriti and hence does not know that she is the same girl he was supposed to marry.

Strange things start happening to Smriti. A mysterious man, Bankimlal (Vicky Ahuja), warns Jaidev that Smriti is possessed by an evil spirit and that he should throw her out of his house as, otherwise, her presence could ruin the lives of everyone in his house. Jaidev’s sister, Karuna (Vidya Malavade), senses the danger in letting Smriti stay in their house and keeps asking her brother to let her go.

However, Jaidev, instead, takes Smriti to the nearby Simla city to seek medi­cal opinion. Stranger things happen to Smriti there and in one incident between her and an evil spirit, Smriti gets back her lost memory. But before she can tell everything about her past to her beloved, Jaidev, she gets poss­essed by the evil spirit once again, this time with far more force. Even as Bankimlal’s help is sought by Jaidev to help Smriti, Karuna hangs herself to death but leaves a letter for Jaidev.

What is written in the letter? Why did Karuna commit suicide? Did she know something about Smriti which Jaidev didn’t know? Does Bankimlal succeed in freeing Smriti from the evil spirit? Or does the evil spirit finish off Bankimlal? Does Jaidev Verma ever get to know that the girl possessed by the evil spirit is none other than Smriti whom he was to marry? Why had he been told two years ago that Smriti was dead? Whose evil spirit was Smriti possessed by? Is Jaidev able to free Smriti of the evil spirit or does the spirit kill Jaidev?

Vikram Bhatt and Amin Hajee’s story is quite routine but the screenplay offers interesting twists and turns, some of which are shocking. The first half has a couple of scary moments but the post-interval portion has more chills and thrills. The drama may often not rise above the ordinary mark as the scenes of horror (a flying Smriti, distorted face, the evil spirit making Smriti eat the dead Bankimlal’s flesh etc.) are mostly of the kind one has seen in earlier horror films. Neverthe­less, the many twists and turns and the chilling horror scenes do keep the audience interest alive all through the film. Dialogues, penned by Sanjay Masoom, are very effective.

Aftab Shivdasani does quite well, enacting the role of Jaidev Verma with understanding. Tia Bajpai acts ably and is especially very good in the horror scenes. Vidya Malavade does a fair job as Karuna. Sharad Kelkar is okay as Amar. Vicky Ahuja makes his mark in the role of Bankimlal. Sanjay Sharma is also effective as Bhola. Naresh Sharma, as the driver of the horse carriage, makes his presence felt. Zubeida is natural as Khala. The rest provide the desired support.

Bhushan Patel’s direction is reasonably good as he succeeds in building up the fear element to the desired level and also in keeping the audien­ce engrossed in the drama. The chilling and thrilling scenes are nice. Chirantan Bhatt’s music is melodious and all the songs are good. But there is no hit number. Shakeel Azmi, Junaid Wasi and Manoj Yadav’s lyrics are appropriate. Amar Mohile’s background music deserves special men­tion for enhancing the impact of the horror scenes. Naren Gedia’s cinematography is of a good standard. Abbas Ali Moghul’s stunt scenes are nice and effective. Kuldeep Mehan’s editing is sharp.

On the whole, 1920 – Evil Returns has enough chills and thrills to entertain the audience. Given the lovely start it has taken in spite of the dull pre-Diwali days and also given its controlled budget, the film will end up proving to be a richly rewarding proposal for all concerned. It could also turn out to be a hit in some circuits.

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4 Responses to 1920 – EVIL RETURNS Review

  1. rakesh says:

    music has done well i think. and a nice start good to see that 4 a small movie…

  2. Pingback: Vidur’s Film Diary – November 2012 « Vidur's Blog

  3. somya says:

    nice story

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