19 April 2013 | khayaal_e_yaar
Horror.....No! Suspense thriller....Yes!
Mohan Bhakri aka Mr. Sleaze was a director overburdened with lame ideas that he used to call a 'film'. 'Cheekh' was released in 1985 and saw a run of just 3 days in our nearest cinema hall. It wasn't the case that the locality where I lived in was a crowded place, packed with people who tend to be movie buffs. On the contrary, my hometown was close to any hamlet where people loved to watch whatever ran in the cinema hall. So, what went wrong with Cheekh? It's certain that it didn't live up to the expectations of the local film goers. Cheekh was billed as a horror film, but it wasn't one. It was a thriller film with a tint of slasher genre. The idea is, Cheekh failed to beat the other films of its time because the swarm of B-graders made it look like any other Bhakri film and people had a common idea of letting it go by. However, this wasn't the case. Cheekh is not only interesting but also moves well once it comes to the point.
Cheekh begins with Thakur (Madan Puri), the cruel village landlord and womanizer, who claims every village belle for himself. It seems he rapes every bride in the village and earns the anger of dominated villagers. The villagers, however, are too docile to protest against the evil landlord. On one such bad day, Thakur rapes another bride before the very eyes of a young kid. The kid watches it all and swears to exact revenge some day.
Days go by and Thakur grows old. He has a daughter Deepa (Deepika Chikhaliya), who is happy-go-lucky kinda girl and remains in her own world of imagination. Once a sculpture artist named Sunil (Javed Khan) saves her from local goons and Deepa falls for him. She takes Sunil to her father, who is now invalid and is on wheel chair. Since Thakur lives alone, he wants Deepa to get married with Sunil and requests Sunil to shift in his palatial Victorian era mansion. Sunil accepts this offer for he loves Deepa very much.
Few days later, Deepa's friend Nisha (Madhu Malhotra) arrives in the mansion. Nisha is a crystal ball reader and claims to know the fate of everyone around her. As few days pass by, we meet Rohit (Raza Murad), who has come here for Nisha. The viewers may guess that Rohit and Nisha are in a kind of relationship and know each other closely. Nisha interprets some messages she gets from her crystal ball, and tells Deepa that a bad omen is imminent. A few nights later an unknown assailant pushes the disabled Thakur down the staircase where he meets a grisly death. As the police has no idea about the killer, they ask everyone to stay there unless the killer is apprehended.
Deepa is restless and is usually calmed by Sunil. They decide to stick together and face the situation as it comes. One night Rohit is accidentally killed by Deepa and Sunil, when they are playing with a fake gun. The two don't understand how it happened. Sunil, being an artist embalms the corpse with POP (Plaster of Paris) and puts it in between his other artworks. Deepa and Sunil decide to keep this a secret and begin finding ways to get rid of this problem. One evening, a girl (Neelam Mehra), who looks like a forced journalist comes to the town looking for her brother Rohit. She secretively files a complaint at the local police station about the strange disappearance of her brother. However, her arrival doesn't remain a secret as the killer soon finds about her and mercilessly kills her. As the mystery deepens, the trio (Deepa, Sunil, Nisha) begin to lose their nerves. They must act fast before the killer redeems the opportunity to kill them.
The story had enough scope, but possibly due to lack of finance Bhakri couldn't develop it well. The locations are eerie and the cast is not bad but surely they all have a label called 'B's' stuck to their faces. The ending is tricky and shocking and the moment it comes, it connects the viewers right with the prologue. This film is bit difficult to find, but I've heard that some DVD companies have refurbished the original VHS version and have attempted to revive this decent little gem. Thanks to their efforts.