Review: Kartik Aaryan’s Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2 review holds its own against the original; Tabu steals the show. The Anees Bazmee film invites similarities to the original, but it manages to stand on its own, aided by great performances from Kartik Aaryan, Kiara Advani, and Tabu. Its sequel, ‘Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2,’ is truly a dreadful error that director Anees Bazmee should not have made more than a decade later.
Many thought filmmaker Priyadarshan was taking a tremendous risk when he made ‘Bhool Bhulaiyaa‘ in 2007. After all, he was remaking a classic like ‘Manichitrathazhu,’ which had won accolades and received appreciation from critics and the general public. The Hindi picture, on the other hand, passed with flying colors, owing to its excellent acting, narrative, and music.
Priyadarshan worked as an assistant director on ‘Manichitrathazhu,’ which helped him come up with a similar notion for ‘Bhool Bhulaiyaa,’ making it a compelling watch even for those who had watched the original.
The plot of Bazmee’s picture is confusing from the start, and one continues thinking, “Surely the characters cannot be written this obtusely,” hoping for a plot twist, but the film dumbs down over the course of its two-and-a-half-hour run time.
What’s the story, you might wonder? In Manali, Reet, a medical student, meets Ruhaan, a wealthy brat. Reet is returning to her hometown of Rajasthan, and Ruhaan, well, he’s a ‘professional’ traveler, traversing states to sample the native cuisine (yeah, he has much time and money in hand unlike most of the Indian population).
Both of them board the same bus from Manali bound for Chandigarh. Ruhaan persuades Reet to attend a local music festival with him at a pit stop before she returns home to marry. They exit the bus, which is later involved in an accident with no survivors.
It’s difficult to watch a sequel in isolation without making comparisons to the original. Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2 fits under this category, as the first film, starring Akshay Kumar and Vidya Balan, was a box office smash and has since gained cult status. In the year 2022, Kartik Aaryan and Kiara Advani are attempting to recreate the same magic, with Tabu offering a hand.
Of course, filmmaker Anees Bazmee has implanted and brought additional components of exhilaration. The plot, authored by Aakash Kaushik (who also wrote the dialogues), gives the performers a large canvas on which to express varied colors and perform.
Strangers At a highland station, Ruhan Randhawa (Kartik Aaryan) and Reet Thakur (Kiara Advani) meet and instantly click, followed by a song-and-dance sequence. This is how the majority of Bollywood love stories begin. Ruhan and Reet end up in the abandoned haveli where Manjulika’s ghost is supposed to have been held captive for the past 18 years.
Ruhan transforms into Rooh Baba in no time, convincing people that he can communicate with ghosts and the spirits of the dead. What happens if he unintentionally frees the spirit that has been imprisoned for years? Will Manjulika avenge herself? Will Rooh Baba’s courageous actions be enough to handle the situation?
While the sequel and the first part have little in common (besides Manjulika), the background score and the song Ami Je Tomar continuously transport you back to the 2009 film, and you find yourself comparing the two. Nonetheless, Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2 is a news story that stands on its own. I’m delighted Anees Bazmee didn’t just rely on jump scares to match the horror genre, because there are true ‘ghostly encounters’ that catch you off guard.
Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2 review
There’s no shortage of humor in Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2, given that the director has a good grasp on the comedy genre, having directed films like No Entry, Welcome, and Singh is King. The nicest thing is that for the first time in a long time, I got to witness audiences laugh so loudly at clean jokes that generally landed smoothly. During most of the movie, people were cheering, hooting, and yelling their lungs out.
I must emphasize the unrivaled excitement and applause that greeted the arrival of Chota Pandit (Rajpal Yadav), who is arguably the only (alive) character that the filmmakers have kept from the original. Rajpal’s speech and facial gestures take comedy to a new level.