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Ek Khiladi Ek HaseenaEk Khiladi Ek Haseena - Review
18th Nov 2005  21.38 IST
By Nitika Desai  

Ek Khiladi Ek Haseena is like a new Bollywood experiment conceived by a mind that has little originality and too much influence of the west.

Directorial debut of writer Suparn Verma, the movie stars Fardeen Khan , Koena Mitra , Firoz Khan , Kay Kay Mennon and Gulshan Grover in principal roles.

Ek Khiladi Ek Haseena is the story of con-sters. Arjun (Fardeen Khan) is a full-blooded conman who has a highly productive mind when it comes to duping people. He and his sidekick Rohit (Rohit Roy) pull one such con in which they unknowingly dupe a gangster's accountant. Rohit ends up paying with his life, while Arjun runs off to another city.

The gangster, Sikander (Gulshan Grover), is on Arjun's trail and wants him to pay back the conned money (plus the interest).

In the meantime, Arjun teams up with other 'likeminded' people (Kay Kay Menon, Mukul Dev and Amin Hajee) to pull off bigger cons. He also meets Natasha (Koena Mitra), a psychiatrist, who gets enchanted by the living-on-the-edge lifestyle of the quartet, and joins them. Quite a psychiatrist! Some would think.

After some tiffs and mutual duping within the group, the five tricksters set their eyes on a big fish - Jehangir Khan (Feroz Khan), the president of Standard Bank. The plan is to con the suave banker of Rs. 25 crores.

But there are several simultaneous developments in the sub plot. One of the group members, Kaif (Kay Kay), happens to be the henchman of gangster Sikander (who is on Arjun's trail). Natasha, on the other hand, seems to be having something cooking in her mind. And then, Jehangir Khan, no matter how big a fish, is difficult to snare.

EKEH is not one of those hardboiled, action-packed thrillers with exploding cars and stunts that defy the very laws of gravity. The story focuses more on the mind games, instead. The film is certainly not for those who leave their thinking caps at home. The sequences in EKEH seethe not so much with anger and angst as with skullduggery.

Fardeen Khan looks dashing throughout the movie, but that is it. The actor fails to deliver in the scenes that demanded commanding histrionics from him.

Koena Mitra, too, fails to capture the nuances of her character. There is no doubt that the babe has tons of sex appeal and she knows how to flaunt it. But to enact a complex character and to bring out the subtle shades in its portrayal is something that is still beyond this oomph belle.

It is Feroz Khan who catches your attention with his imposing presence, fiery eyes and swagger. The senior Khan has a devilish flamboyance that verily befits his character in the movie.

In short, EKEH is a pot-pourri of racy sequences that seem to have been blatantly lifted from more than one Hollywood movie. The lead characters in the film have surreal shades. And there are surprises tossed at you at regular intervals as the story unspools right from the pacy start in the first half to an unpredictable conclusion.

The movie entertains, but doesn't thrill. Yes, the unexpected twists, particularly the one at the fag end, will catch you off guard.

Ek Khiladi Ek Haseena
Fardeen Khan
Koena Mitra
Firoz Khan
Kay Kay Mennon
Gulshan Grover

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