Hisss (2010)

The Nagin digests a victim...
The Nagin digests a victim…

A villainous westerner steals the snake lover of a Nagin (an Indian snake deity) so that she will follow him back to the city.

The Nagin, which transforms into the shape of a beautiful woman, sets out for revenge…

Poster
Poster
The Nagin in her human form (Mallika Sherawat)
The Nagin in her human form (Mallika Sherawat)

HISSS was directed by Jennifer Chambers Lynch, David Lynch’s daughter, who disowned the project when it was completed without her involvement. According to Jennifer, the film that she wanted to make was a love story, but it eventually took the shape of a horror film after the producers took creative control of it. The movie was shot simultaneously in English and Hindi.

Giant CGI snake!
Giant CGI snake!

So was HISSS so bad it had to be disowned by Jennifer? Hell, no – I thought this English/Hindi movie was certainly a bit cheesy, but it was also lots of fun to watch.

Poster
Poster

The transformation scenes are a real hoot, using a mixture of make-up, prosthetics, animatronics and some not too hot CGI. There’s a nice touch in one shape-changing scene where the eye slides horizontally across the creature’s face.

The serpent's eye slides into place...
The serpent’s eye slips into place…

In an early transformation, set in the muddy jungle, the snake turns into a kind of cocoon, from which its female human form emerges.

From out of the cocoon...
From out of the cocoon…
...emerges the female snake-creature...
…emerges the female snake-creature…
...who becomes this woman
…who becomes this woman

Robert Kurtzman was the creature makeup effects designer, so the overall snake-woman creature look is good.

Hissssssss...
Hissssssss…
A transformation in the mud
A transformation in the mud

There’s an exciting sequence involving a chase on foot through the city backstreets, plus there’s even a brief Bollywood-style song and dance moment!

She starts dancing when she hears a snake charmer playing his flute
She starts dancing when she hears a snake charmer playing his flute
A behind the scenes shot
A behind the scenes shot
A guy gets swallowed by Nagin in her giant snake form
A guy gets swallowed by Nagin in her giant snake form

After swallowing one victim whole, we see the half woman/half snake Nagin lying on her bed, digesting her meal with a distended, reptilian belly. That is certainly a memorable visual!

An arresting image
An arresting image

The late, always-reliable Irrfan (JURASSIC WORLD) Khan plays the cop lead and sex symbol Mallika Sherawat is the snake woman, who has a love scene towards the end of the film, in which she is in human form as she caresses her cobra love: lots of tongue action!

How romantic
How romantic
Mallika cuddles a cobra
Mallika cuddles a cobra
Mallika Sherawat and Irrfan Khan
Mallika Sherawat and Irrfan Khan
Poster
Poster

Finally, here’s another behind the scenes shot…

Another behind the scenes shot

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