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Review: Anamika

Ananth Mahadevan’s Anamika, treats Alfred Hitchcock’s Rebecca as if it were chewing gum, quips Khalid Mohamed.

movie reviews Updated: May 03, 2008 11:48 IST
Khalid Mohamed

Anamika
Cast: Dino Morea, Minissha Lamba
Direction: Ananth Narayan Mahadevan
Rating: *1/2

Hark ye. In some sandstone Rajasthan palace, there’s a raja and a rani who sup on biryani for breakfast. They lunch on cornflakes and dine on tea.. Kinda kinky, the royals don’t even bat an eyelid when a wild-eyed valet asks them if they’d like a Russian salad for breakfaaaast. What’s that?

Such mealfunctions apart, Ananth Narayan Mahadevan’s Anamika, treats Alfred Hitchcock’s Rebecca (1940) as if it were chewing gum. Chomp, chomp, chomp till it’s tasteless and tiresome. Surely Hitch would have gone burp re burp.

So, escort service gal (Minissha Lamba, saucer-eyed) meets Marwar dude (Dino Morea in shiny suits, shinier lips). He invites her for nashta but she can’t tell the difference between kachori and pasta. Pleased – strange man, he is – he gets married to her at a ceremony which you are not shown. How you miss a jhalak of the laddoos really.

Next: Saucer Eyes and Shiny Lips have psycho bedroom manners. Shudder. He presses her neck to say, “What a gorgeous gala!” She suspects foul play because he had strangled his first wife whom you never glimpse except for some tufts of hair (very Arty Chhabria). Despair.

<b1>The plot roast thickens. Saucer and Shiny sleep on separate pillows like Jodhaa Akbar. Meanwhile a cop (Gulshan Glower) eats kilos and kilos of goose liver.You get fever. His wife, Achint Kaur, keeps going, “Quack, quack” as if she were in a quackie movie. The only reason it could have been made is to grant the scariest close-ups to Koena Mitra. Really, she’d be the perfect choice to light the inaugural lamp at a Ramsay international film festival. Do Gaz Cannes ke Neeche?

Alright, so Mahadevan may be earnest, he may not be vulgar or crude but how you wish he’d wake up and smell the cappuccino. The bullock cart pace and the old-fashioned script, frequently, lull you into an after-lunch siesta. Also, how about leaving the great Hitch alone? Earlier the director had ripped Dial M for Murder for Aksar.

Technically, the cinematography is passable. But the editing, choreography and Anu Malik’s music score is patently B-grade.

Of the cast, Dino Morea and Minissha Lamba must be making Laurence Olivier and Joan Fontaine rock and roll in their graves. This YAWNamika is as avoidable as biryani at 8 am. Good night.