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Naina

Allumination Filmworks // Unrated // June 6, 2006
List Price: $24.99 [Buy now and save at Amazon]

Review by Scott Weinberg | posted June 11, 2006 | E-mail the Author
The Movie

This is a tough one. I really don't know how to describe Naina other than this: "It's the Bollywood version of The Eye." Like, literally, down to even the stupidest little plot point, only this time around we have Indian actors instead of Asian ones and this time around the story is ridiculously familiar and old-hat instead of semi-original and therefore intriguing.

Young Naina (Urmila Matondkar) is just about to receive some new corneas. She's been blind since a horrific childhood accident, you see, and it's only now that she'll be able to see all the wonderful things life has to offer. (Like the kid down the hall who has brain cancer.) But once Naina's new eyeballs get hooked up, she starts seeing all sorts of visions, preominitions, hallucinations, and slo-mo dream sequences. Turns out that the eyeballs once belonged to a local witch-girl whom everyone hated andzzzzzzzzzzzzz....

Sound familiar? Frankly I don't know if Danny & Oxide Pang received any sort of credit or cash for the creation of Naina, but if they didn't, they'd have one fantastic lawsuit on their hands. Naina simply wanders endlessly through someone else's plot threads, careful only to include a limp little romantic subplot -- which exists only to make this deadly dull Bollywood thriller more of a chore to sit through. Whether you're Indian, Japanese, or American, just stick with the original version of The Eye. Quality filmmaking can transcend all kinds of cultural barriers, just like plagiarism obviously can.

Oh, and try not to laugh out loud at the fake-looking bald-cap the Cancer Kid wears. It's not nice to laugh at fictional Cancer Kids ... even if they look like they're wearing giant tan condoms on their head.

The DVD

Video: The film is presented in a very clean widescreen format, with special attention paid to the Crayola-style production design and the squeaky clean hospital floors.

Audio: Dolby Digital 5.1 or 2.0 Hindi (with just a little English tossed in there). English subtitles are included.

Extras: Just a bunch of trailers.

Final Thoughts

And even IF Naina is a fully-approved and legitimate remake of The Eye, that doesn't change how deadly dull, painfully derivative, and endlessly redundant the thing is. Plus it's about as scary as a soap commercial.

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