This time around, the story expands its base with two male characters ricocheting between being hero and villain, one masked, another struggling to find his real face.

Eight years after the original comes the sequel, ‘Ek Villain Returns’, in which the theme, ‘every story has a villain’ gets a refresh.

There could have been something to this idea, that everyone has elements of hero and villain within and the one that comes up top depends upon our circumstances.

But a disjointed plot and pedestrian performances do not an effective film make: in comparison, the less than middling ‘Ek Villain’, starring Siddharth Malhotra-Riteish Deshmukh-Shraddha Kapoor, feels like a better film.

Arjun Kapoor plays Gautam, a spoilt, rich brat who swaggers in and out of his father’s plush office, open-air concert theatres, and a wedding venue.

A heart-break leads him into all kinds of questionable activities, with the film trying to tell us that here’s a good-at-heart man-child in search of a good woman (Tara Sutaria) who will save him from himself. 

John Abraham is Bhairav, a naive and innocent taxi-driver in love with a pretty young thing (Disha Patani) whose wiles are hidden behind a fresh face.