Help is a flick that at least aspires for a higher cause - one that moves beyond piercing your eardrums. It, thus, doesn't completely shame its posters - the ones that say it is the most chilling movie of the decade, or some such thing.
But then, it is pretty much a multiplex offering, with less-than-big stars, not much flamboyance backing its idea, and execution that cannot be claimed to have been a perfectionist's effort.
The plot takes off from familiar ground, into familiar skies. Pia (Mugdha Godse) and Vic (Bobby Deol) are having a stressful marriage, and to tax Pia further, her father has just had a heart attack. When they go to visit him in Mauritius, Pia has to confront a past whose ghost is hell-bent on destroying her family.
Pia's dead twin sister, who died in an accident as a kid is haunting her, and even possessing her. Pets and best friends are sad victims to gruesome deaths, and when the rational-thinking Vic also has a glimpse of the supernatural, he realizes that Pia needs help, and fast. Vic consults Aditya Motwani (Shreyas Talpade), a parapsychologist, who then sets out to exorcise the vengeful ghost.
The brighter side of Help is that the attempt to craft an evolved horror story, one that doesn't bank entirely on red herrings, is pretty evident. But then, the film doesn't rise up beyond being just an attempt. The few biting and well-executed chills sprinkled here and there don't camouflage the fact that this flick is not really scaring audiences - it's mostly evoking a lot of curiosity about the next scene and its deduction about who the spirit really is.
And the logic deserved some care; for example, in the bits where Aditya Motwani - who is supposed to be paralyzed from the waist down - is shown driving a car in the anti-climax. There are other "What??" moments, too, especially when the second-rate graphics are hurled at us.
For Bobby Deol, this is no career-rescuer, and he doesn't have much to do anyway. Mugdha Godse is more about her bikini and her low-cut dresses than real acting skills. Shreyas Talpade seems to be mocking his role, but that's probably just our imagination.
Apart from the graphics that we spoke about, the rest of the movie is a slick production. A couple of well-picturized romantic songs, and Mugdha Godse in her bikini, and Help - despite its flaws - isn't as bad as the trashiest horror flick you ever saw.
Basically, we'd recommend Help for a few honestly-made chills and the said bikini; but if you're not the target audience, you may want to wait to rent it.