A haunting romance

A haunting romance

A haunting romance

Kannada (UA), Cast: Parul Yadav, Dhananjaya, Raghu Mukherjee
Director: Pawan Wadayar

Pawan Wadayar, who has scripted, written and directed Jessie, had a wonderful theme of a woman caught in a tsunami of psychological conflict and personal emotions.

His heroine Nandhini is a doctor — modern, yet traditional — who does not believe in the promiscuous ways of her friend Shilpa, who changes boyfriends like bedsheets. Director Wadyar had a great opportunity to examine Nandhini’s complex state of mind when Jessi appears from nowhere, declaring ‘I Love You’.

However, Wadayar fritters the chance away, turning Jessie into a half-romance, half-horror tale. The film has its moments, but is also a patience teaser. 

Having encountered death at her very first assignment as doctor called to attend to her friend’s brother, Nandhini turns a psychological wreck. The village priest recommends that she pray for 11 days to Lord Hanuman, housed atop the desolate Honnange Hill, to ward off evil influence. A reluctant Nandhini treks nearly 1,008 steps, only to be stalked by Jessi who tells her that she is made for him.

She reciprocates after much agitation and confusion. However, a visit to his house and a revelation by his mother turn her into a psychotic case.

To soothe her frayed frame of mind, her parents marry her to Oz-returned techie Shyam. But the couple’s life turns nightmarish, till exorcist Aslam Khan enters the scene.

Shot lusciously amid sylvan valley and waterfalls, with two pleasing songs, Jessie makes an interesting watch, though not engaging. Parul Yadav as Nandhini does a competent job while Raghu Mukherjee, as the understanding husband, is suave and dignified. Dhananjaya, however, is as irksome as Jessie.
Despite its faults, Jessie is worth watching.