Guest House (1980)
Cast: Prem Kishen, Padmini Kapila, Vijayendra, Sujit Kumar, Komila Wirk
Directors: Tulsi & Shyam Ramsay
Music Director: Bappi Lahiri
Nutshell: Filthy dead chopped limb rises-up-in-vengeance yarn from the Ramsays!
A run down guest house in the middle of nowhere attracts fewer and fewer clients and is thus threatened by closure. The lazy owner and his evil cohorts opt for desperate measures murdering one of the few clients, a fat man with a curious beard named Chris-TOE-pher for his riches. The owners bury the corpse and get on with life and business takes an upswing as some deranged travellers (Narendranath and wife) come to stay.
The Ramsay’s pile on heaps of comedy laced with cheap double entendre’s and a few horribly choreographed song and dance sequences set to Bappi Lahiri’s toe tapping tunes as the plot meanders for an age before finally getting down to business. The partners in crime duly start falling out as financial problems start to reappear. Seasoned second string villain Sujit Kumar is in a fix having lost money in a betting game too many and returns to Christopher’s body parts in order to recover the flash diamond ring that had been buried along with the corpse. Little does he know that by chopping of the limb and stealing Christopher’s ring, he is about to unleash the most hideous vengeance upon all those who come across it or who had wronged him.
After an eternity of dumb comedy and insipid romance featuring Ramsay veteran Vijayendra Ghatge, the chopped hand finally starts making its presence felt by menacing the inhabitants of the Guest House.
Just when you thought you had experienced the worst horror with the filthy rotting limb stalking its victims, even worse follows as Christopher rises up from his shallow grave in search of his chopped limb and his loot.
This was one of the early Ramsay efforts and though the bits when the hand is menacing its victims are well staged and fairly enjoyable, the endless sequences of juvenile comedy as well as the frivolous romantic song sequences slow the film down to a painfully slow pace and most of it plods along in a most unexciting manner. The film is horribly uneven with a bare minimum of horror and an overload of comedy and it certainly doesn’t rank with the Ramsays finer moments.
The cast is laden with typically z-grade performers but Premnath as Christopher made sure he got a special appearance billing to somewhat exonerate him from this laborious horror-farce. Perhaps the only saving grace other than the spectacularly classy hand is the Bond-like theme song “We Meet Again, in the Guest House….Guest House Guest House, ooh the Guest House!” You can count on Bappi Lahiri for quality.