The horror genre has taken huge strides in the West and new concepts have been used to interest the genre. Bollywood, however, has lagged behind. Most horror films still follow the template set by the game-changer RAAZ . But now, Karan Johar’s Dharma Productions is all set to introduce BHOOT: PART ONE – THE HAUNTED SHIP, and it promises to be a horror flick of sorts. In addition, it features Vicky Kaushal, who has become extremely popular after the blockbuster success of his previous film, URI: The Surgical Strike. . So what BHOOT: PART ONE – manages haunted ship to scare the daylight out of the audience? Or does it fail to impress? Let us analyze.
BHOOT: PART ONE – HAUNTED SHIP is the story of a man who encounters horror while fighting the horrors of his past. The year is 2012. Prithvi (Vicky Kaushal) is a widower who has lost his wife Sapna (Bhumi Pednekar) and daughter Megha in a freak accident. He is depressed and avoiding medication. Amidst all this, an abandoned ship named Sea Bird is stranded on Juhu beach in Mumbai. Prithvi works for a shipping company that is asked to take this ship to sea as soon as possible. On her first voyage of the ship, strange things happen and it makes her feel that the ship is inhabited. However, he accepts this as a side effect of his hallucinations and his state of mind. However, later visits make him believe that all this is not a guess of his imagination. During the third voyage, he placed a girl on the hull of the ship. He also appears in the log book and some videotape dating back to the year 2001. As they watch the tape, they learn that the captain’s wife (Meher Vij) and daughter Meera were also present on the ship. Gradually, Prithvi realizes that the girl he encountered on the ship is Meera. He gets on the ship again and this time he comes face to face with Meera. But this time, he is in a ghostly avatar. What happens next makes the rest of the film.
The story of Bhanu Pratap Singh is decent and can be made to scare a coward. Bhanu Pratap Singh’s screenplay, however, is ineffective overall. He becomes a frightening Bhagwat only in a few scenes. Even in the main story, things are barely convincing. Bhanu Pratap Singh’s dialogues are defunct.
Bhanu Pratap Singh’s direction is nothing great. He makes good use of his knowledge in creating a scary atmosphere. Some scenes are well executed. But most scenes fail to impress. The trouble begins within the first 15 minutes, when a disorganized couple is shown getting into a massive ship and playing hide and seek. The ship is ten storeys long and this information was given by the makers themselves minutes before this scene. But no explanation is given as to how the lovers manage to climb the deck which is so high. The scene actually gave a clear indication that logic and common sense would not be the strong points of this film. And sure enough, the absurdity continues in the second half, especially the climax. Many questions remain unanswered and audiences are sure to baffle when they come out of theaters.
BHOOT: PART ONE – Hunted Ship begins on a fair note as a glimpse of the Earth’s past and the events on the ship in 2001. The first half does not have a story like this, but it terrifies you because the creepy atmosphere is well made. Some jump scares also serve the purpose. The gap comes to a great point. After Interval, there is some movement in the story and you really get to know where the film is headed. Nevertheless, there are some unwanted scenes, such as Prithvi imagining him talking to his dead daughter on the banks of a river. On the positive side, the scene in the church is excellent and one expects the film to go high from here. The sad thing is that the climax has clichés and flawed events, which completely kills Anand.
BHOOT – Part One Haunted Ship | Public review | Vicky Kaushal | First day first show
Talking about performance, Vicky Kaushal is in good form. He looks very dashing and corrects his act without going overboard in any scene. Bhumi Pednekar is decent in a cameo. Ashutosh Rana (Professor Joshi) is fine and gives an excellent performance of his earlier performance in Raees. His character tragically gets a raw deal in the end. Akash Dhar (Riaz) plays the role of Prithvi’s best friend and has an important role. He is decent but again, he doesn’t have much to do later. Meher Vij has a great screen presence but his performance is due to poor writing. Sanjay Gurbakshani (Agnihotri) is an average. The actor playing the character of Amar seems a bit scary who does a good job. The actors playing Meera and Megha do very well.
Akhil Sachdeva’s music has no merit. ‘Channa Way’ Is played in the opening credits. Ketan Sodha’s background score is heart wrenching and works. Pushkar Singh’s cinematography captures the mood very well. The production design of Aditya Kanwar is on top. The abandoned ship is particularly well designed. The costumes of Natasha Charak and Nikita Raheja Mohanty are realistic. Vikram is Dahiya’s action film and snaps authenticity. Redefine’s VFX is first rate and combines the horror factor. Bodhaditya Banerjee’s editing is dragging and may be crisp. Ideally, the film should not have been longer than 90 minutes.
Overall, BHOOT: PART ONE – HAUNTED SHIP suffers from a semi-baked plot and a flawed narrative that confuses the audience. The end result is completely unrelated, except for some scenes that provide some chills. It will be rejected by the audience at the box office. Disappointing!