A well-played Bollywood mystery-thriller that’s let down only by a lack of visual style, “Humraaz” gets good character mileage from its star trio and fine perfs from two of them (Bobby Deol, Amisha Patel). This masala drama-cum-whodunit opened locally to good reviews and strong B.O. July 5, only a week before the launch of blockbuster “Devdas,” and deserves to survive that juggernaut’s swell.
Patel and Akshaye Khanna play lovers Priya and Karan, leaders of a song’n’dance troupe that wins a contract to perform on a liner thanks to super-rich tycoon Raj Singhania (Deol). On the cruise to Malaysia, Raj and Priya fall for each other, but back in India after the intermission, Karan starts to play dirty and Raj engages in some “Dial M for Murder” shenanigans. With its multiple twists, most of the drama is in part two, with both the diminutively sexy Patel and even the usually dull Deol showing good chemistry. Production values are reasonably glossy, with strong colors, and at least three of the six (mostly good) musical numbers neatly comment on the plot. Aadesh Shrivastava’s background score succinctly conjures atmosphere. Hindi title means “Confidante.”