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Why Ek Thi Daayan belongs to an unfamiliar terrain of supernatural thriller?

  1. Thematic obfuscation

The film is rather an interesting story from an unfamiliar terrain of supernatural thriller which is sliced straight from native folk-lores. The film maintains its enthralling suspense for most of the part where fear and foreboding hang heavy and the jolts are delivered to great effect. The best supernatural films are rooted in the real, because that’s where the dark things live: an empty room with eerie corners, an eyeball turning dense black. The dark, spooky mood is sustained with the aid of shadowy interiors and an effective and unobtrusive background score.

  1. An uncanny past

A star magician at the peak of his prowess, is traumatized by fearful hallucinations and begins to make embarrassing mistakes on the stage. An uncanny past involving a witch promising to return to haunt him, floods his conscience with her overshadowing presence. Taking help from his childhood psychiatrist to combat his persistent, tenacious hallucinations, the events coincides with him when an ominous character called Lisa is introduced quite inventively into the story, and the film appears to hit the next level when that wonderful ‘Yaaram’ song takes on a different meaning; the magician however thinks that she is a witch who has come back to keep her word.

  1. Freudian conception

The film raises pertinent doubts in its inclusion of motor hallucinations, a Freudian concept, of Emraan Hashmi’s character; one’s scientific bent of mind will occasionally try to rationalize the myths of black magic, on which the film is based. The line, between what is conjured up by the feverish imagination of a young boy desperate to believe in legends and what we actually believe is blurred very effectively, and that is what makes this film so cleverly disturbing, so intelligently frightening.

  1. Well-knit structure

The entire first-half which is more like a great backstory for an over-committed barber (with highly fetishised ponytail-hatred) is excellent; the narrative is constant, thrilling and filled with tiny detailing, supported by uniformly great acting and sharp, neat writing. The three leading ladies: Huma Qureshi, Konkona Sen Sharma and Kalki Koechlin play their given role with exquisitely good flair.

  1. A benevolent glance switching to sudden, startling malevolence

Ek Thi Daayan starts so well that you are riveted; just about everything in the first half, with its well-calibrated chills, is just as it should be. The second half is disentangle-time, and you are then left grasping at thin air, quite appropriate in a film which is about hallucinations, apparitions, witches, and, yes, black magic. The sharp slide wants to make you ask: what just happened here? Did a black cat just cross the path of the film?

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