We always have a choice. God-given free-will. We choose our destiny.

Hang on, why are we philosophising about a schlocky assembly-line horror film that warns your eyes of torture in 3D even before you enter the hall?

Because, we the cursed, chose to embrace the misery and horror of watching this assault on our senses after seeing the posters that show Bipasha Basu being groped by a ghost. In Raaz 3, the leading ladies flaunt lingerie as if the film is one huge ad for Victoria’s Secret. How they would’ve liked to spell this B-movie with a B! Actually, C works better to describe this dreadfulness. C for Crass!

As good as that may sound to some of you, the film may have still worked if the makers ensured there was some sort of tension, semblance of pace or genuine scares. What you get are unintentional laughs, lame excuses for the ladies to take their clothes off and the most unconvincing set-ups for the serial-kisser to do his thing with them. So much so that the maggot-infested devil seems to have a better chemistry with the girl than the hero.

The weak plot involves a jealous actress (Bipasha Basu) giving up on her God and taking to black magic to bring the downfall of her nemesis and competition (Esha Gupta). To do this, the actress must make the girl drink cursed water supplied by the devil himself at regular intervals. Further, to make her drink that water, she gets her filmmaker boyfriend to make a whole movie with this girl. The boyfriend obliges but only to fall for the girl he’s giving the water to. But falling for her doesn’t stop him from giving her water! Yes, that’s how much thought the makers have put into the narrative before bringing in the ‘scary’ bits.

The attempts to scare include hundreds of computer generated cockroaches forcing the girl to rip open her dress and run naked into a party, the devil telling the star that she needs to sleep with him (and you thought spells didn’t involve a casting couch?) and even a stray ghost in a hospital making a phone call to tip off the devil!

Emraan Hashmi looks adequately traumatised and hurt like he’s been cast just to kiss the girls as if he wasn’t good for anything else. Bipasha Basu lets her legs do all the talking and the acting (For proof, see the pre-intermission scene where the makers decide to show leg instead of her histrionics) while the pretty Esha Gupta seems undecided on whether to look like Deepika Padukone or Lara Dutta, two actresses she strongly resembles.

Go for Raaz 3 if you want to know what torture by black magic feels like. Pick a haunted hall for best results. This is what you got free-will for, remember?

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Sudhish KamathMay 11, 2012