HATE STORY 4 (2018)

The Hate Story franchise has built up for the erotic thriller genre in a manner similar to the way the 1920 films have built for the horror genre. The problem with both these franchises has been the fact that the films have got increasingly worse over the years and the downward spiral continues with Hate Story 4. It has to be attributed to these films that they almost always have an interesting story to tell but the execution has gotten so bad over the years that it is difficult to even find out a single redeeming factor about them. When I walk into a Hate Story film, I always lower my standards of cinematic rewards and try to bring out those voyeuristic fangs to which a large chunk of these films cater to. However, even that was not able to make this film tolerable.

Rajveer (Karan Wahi) and Aryan (Vivan Bhatena) are two brothers who have the world at their feet. Rajveer is a photographer and Aryan runs a ton of his father’s (Gulshan Grover) businesses including some that can make use of his brother’s photography skills. They both need a fresh face for a new campaign and Rajveer happily double-crosses his current squeeze for a club dancer Tasha (Urvashi Rautela). Tasha has plans of her own and soon things start taking an ugly turn for the brothers.

A film like Hate Story 4 needed an intriguing story, some believable performances and an absurd amount of skin show to make any impact whatsoever. To start with, whatever little surprise or intrigue was there in the plot is drained out by the trailers of this film. Anyone who has seen the trailer for this film will know his way around every twist and turn. They showed way too much in that trailer and that literally robbed the plot of the least bit of interest that was left.

The film boasts of some of the worst performances and some of the most obnoxiously cringe-worthy dialogs that I have had the displeasure of sitting through. Some of it is there in the trailer as well and I believe many would have already taken note of that. Every performance except Urvashi Rautela (up to some extent) is horribly bad. The two male actors have no range and when they try to be dramatic they end up being rip-roaringly funny. If you don’t believe my words, just look out for Bhatena’s expressions when he shoots an important character or Wahi’s rendering of a heartbroken lover. I nearly fell off my chair laughing in certain sequences.

Urvashi Rautela is beautiful but she still seems to have a hangover from her Chudail-ish self of Great Grand Masti as at many junctures she gets way too animated for the character that she is playing. However, what she does best is divert your attention from the gaping limitations of the film and keep you transfixed on her moves. That’s one hell of an achievement in a film like this but unfortunately, her spirited act is not enough to get this film out of a rut. Ihana Dhillon has an important part to play but she is nothing more than a prop. Gulshan Grover is routine.

Apart from everything mentioned above, Hate Story 4 also has some nightmarishly poor editing. Certain scenes are cut so abruptly to other totally different parts that I was left baffled and dazed. The director also has this tendency to explain what is already made clear by a certain sequence. This firm grasp of the obvious literally makes you feel like hurling rotten tomatoes and eggs at the screen. The music of every Hate Story film has been good and this is no exception. But I fail to understand this overwhelming desire of the filmmakers to remix songs that are not all that old and put them in their films. However, that’s the least of the film’s problem.

The first installment of the franchise made for an uncomfortable watch. Paoli Dam nailed the character and the amount of skin show and her overall actions were justified and backed up by a solid plot and believable performances by the antagonists. The second installment did almost everything right apart from having Jay Bhanushali play a character of importance. The third installment was neither sexy nor smart. That makes Hate Story 4 the third best film of this franchise and that’s not one bit flattering. This film does have the oomph factor in its favor thanks to a ravishing Urvashi Rautela but falters in every other department.

Rating: 2/5 (2 out of 5 Stars)            

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