The movie Jinn is for those Muslims who had thought that Hollywood had finally given their narrative a chance to prove itself in the film industry. Directed by a Pakistani, Ajmal Zaheer Ahmad, this was surely to offer something different than the usual exorcisms and hauntings. But all the high hopes were to fall apart after the first thirty minutes of the movie, when it turned more of an action-thriller than a horror story. After Shan, a Muslim, learns that he and his family is being haunted by the shayateen (the most evil of the jinns), he seeks refuge in a church where the Father reads him a verse about the third creation of God ‘The Jinn’ from the Torah. If this was an attempt to bring together the three Abrahamic faiths, then it just seemed rushed. He comes to know of a prophecy there whereby he is ‘the chosen one’ to defeat the jinns and rescue humanity; a glimpse of Harry Potter perhaps.

The entire action sequences seemed a poor mash-up of scenes from Silent Hill, Insidious and Constantine.Dominic Rains, playing Shan, seemed a bit camera-conscious and looked as if he was new to the big screen. The only captivating part of the movie was perhaps the fact that it stressed upon the existence of Jinn, something which even the religious have forgotten. The movie also differentiated between the good jinns and the bad jinns, the later being called the Shayateen. And they have been working to lead man astray ever since the creation of humanity. So they know more humanity than humanity itself. Obviously, this would have seemed just another ride through imagination for the agnostics, but it neverthless touched a very important point; in an age where seeing is believing, everything that exists is not something you can see.

But all might have still been well had the Pakistani classic song ‘Tere bin nai lagta dil mera soniya’ (My heart can’t live without you my love) not been played behind an action sequence where the angel Gabreil is battling the Jinns! One cannot fathom what could have led the producers to such a bizarre choice. Maybe, someone forgot to edit the audio or they just wanted to forcefully add an inappropriate song just because a Pakistani song had to be in a movie for a Pakistani director to leave his mark. Nothing made sense, at least not to an audience who had not expected any comedy out of a horror movie, or so it seemed in the trailer. And as if you did not have enough disappointed, you just learned that you can kill the Jinn, made of fire, by throwing them in a swimming pool full of water. Yes, there was one thing very unique about this movie; when Shan tried to diffuse a flamed Jinn by putting buckets of water over him from the tap. I wonder why haven’t the others tried this method yet.