It has been almost a year since the cinemas were asked to close due to the rapid increase in coronavirus cases in the country. ANGREZI MEDIUM at the time was theatrical films, produced by Dinesh Vijan and KAAMYAAB, directed by Hardik Mehta. In an interesting turn of events, ROOHI, the film that releases today and kicks off the movie viewing season in theaters, is overwhelmed by both of these personalities. So does ROOHI manage to entertain and entertain the audience? Or does it fail to entice? Let us analyze.
Ruhi is the story of an aggrieved girl. Bhavana Pandey (Rajkumar Rao) and Kattani Qureshi (Varun Sharma) work as a crime journalist in Bagadpur, a small town. They are also experts ‘Pakdai Shadi’ Kidnapping of kidnapped bride, an accepted custom in Bagadpur. One day, his boss, Ganiya Shakeel (Manav Vij) orders him to kidnap a girl, Ruhi (Janhvi Kapoor), who hails from a nearby town, Mujaribad. Bhavra and Kattani manage to kidnap Ruhi while he is with his father (Rajesh Jas). According to ‘Pakdai Shadi’ Custom, after the girl is kidnapped, she is taken straight to the wedding venue. Bhavra and Kattani are also going to suit up with Ruhi. But after being kidnapped, Gunia calls him and tells that the groom’s uncle has suddenly passed away. So now the wedding will be a week later. Till then, Bhawra and Kattanni are said to hold him as a hostage in an abandoned property in the hills of Ambiyapur. On the first night, Bhava goes to offer Ruhi a dinner, so that he can know that she is with him. Kattani does not believe at first, but later, even he saw Roohi’s side. However, instead of being intimidated, Kattani falls for Rohi. On the other hand, Bhavra is in love with non-Ruhi. He decides to help her and take out the witch from her body. Kattanni however is dissuaded by the idea that Rohi loves Rohit and if Bhava succeeds, the witch will leave Roohi forever. What happens next is the rest of the film.
The story of Mrigdeep Singh Lamba and Gautam Mehra is interesting and novel. The authors try their best to bring something new to the table. The screenplay of Mrigdeep Singh Lamba and Gautam Mehra is, however, only interesting in parts. Some of the scenes are extraordinary and bring the house down. But serious parts do not have the desired effect. The dialogues of Mrigdeep Singh Lamba and Gautam Mehra are funny. But the dialect is very authentic and incomprehensible in many places.
Hardik Mehta’s direction is the best. On the plus side, he handles some scenes with Ellen. In addition, he sets the mood right, especially in the horror scenes. Even the various cities depicted in the film are uniquely depicted. For instance, the practice of kidnapping a bizarre bride in Babagpur, the snowy hills of Ambiyapur and the practice Desi In Chimatpur, exorcism means the novelty of the film. On the flipside, the climax is disappointing. The film also ends on a sudden note. There is an expectation that the producers will provide some backstory about Ruhi’s past but it never happens. The same path was also followed in S.T.R.E. , Where the track of the mysterious girl (Shraddha Kapoor) ends on Cliffner. In the case of ROOHI, it does not have the same effect as STREE. Also, going-on here is confusing and dialect is difficult to understand. Many dialogues are sure to be bouncers for many viewers.
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Roohi starts on an interesting note, reflecting the concept of the kidnapping of the bride in Bagadpur, that too through the eyes of a foreign reporter (Alexx O’Neal). The film gets better once Bhava and Kattani kidnap Ruhi and establish a base in the factory, the abandoned factory. The scene in which Bhavya reveals Rohi for the utterance adds to the laughter. The scene where Kataney falls for Rohi, instead of running away, is unique and unexpected. This will bring a smile to the audience’s face. The hiatus comes at an interesting turn. After Interval, the film begins to collapse, but in some scenes, especially Bhava’s interactions with the dog and Bhava’s interactions with the old woman (Sarita Joshi) add humor and madness. The climax, though unpredictable, is disappointing.
Talking about the performances, Rajkumar Rao is in his element as expected. Due to his captivating performance, nobody hates him, even though he is playing the role of a kidnapper in the film. And his comic timing is spot-on, especially in scenes where he is walking away from Rohi. Janhvi Kapoor is a big surprise. He has hardly any dialogues but he must take his acting with his sentiments right. And he is also convincing as a witch. Varun Sharma is amazing and manages to increase laughter. In the final 30 minutes, however, he doesn’t have much to do. Manav Vij takes part and his performance is justified. Sarita Joshi (credited in the film as Padma Shri Sarita Joshi) is hilarious and wishes she had a longer screen time. Alex O’Neal is lovely. Rajesh H Jais, Anurag Arora (Tantric), Sumit Gulati (Paras; finally Ruhi’s groom) are fine.
The music of Sachin-Jigar is appropriate for the film and is the theme. ‘Kisten’ Suddenly arrives, but soulful. ‘Bhootni’ While hilarious ‘Panghat’ Is played in the end credits. ‘Nadiyon Paar’ The film is associated with the print of the film before it starts. It is a very good and good shot song. One wishes it was a part of the film’s narrative. Ketan Sodha’s background score is well-woven and also contributes to the horror quotient.
Amalendu Chaudhary’s cinematography is superb. Various locations are well captured in the film. The production design of Ayushi Aggarwal and Abhijeet Shrestha is quirky and adds to the terrifying atmosphere. Theia Tekchandani’s costumes are realistic. Nikita Kapoor’s prosthetics are very definite. Manohar Verma’s action is fine, while Red Chillies. VFX has a VFX first-rate. The editing of Huzaefa Lokhandwala is fine and could have been better and crisper in the first half.
Overall, ROOHI rests on a unique concept, great performance and some interesting fun and scary visuals. However, a disappointing climax and a barely understood bid could affect the film’s prospects at the box office.