One question that everyone was asking before the release of Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2 was ‘whether Kartik Aaryan would be good enough to replace Akshay Kumar in a film known for its situational comedy of errors?’
Well, he has passed the test with flying colors and seems totally aware of his stardom.
Then there is the point of forceful intellectualization of typical Bollywood films that were never meant to be cerebral. Critics have done that with many films and even used phrases such as ‘leaving brains behind’ and ‘crass comedy’. Didn’t you watch the trailer beforehand? When did the makers promise that you’ll be forced to rethink your attitude towards water shortage or climate change?
Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2 and other similar films aim to provide entertainment, and in the process, take certain liberties with caste, creed, ethnicity, and regions. A joke shouldn’t die just because a group might take offense. In fact, they should be laughing at its plausibility. Enough has been dished out in the name of situationally aware and politically correct. If it’s done well, give it a chance.
Then there are filmmakers like Anees Bazmee and Priyadarshan who have been struggling to get their due. Priyadarshan still has Kanchivaram, Gardish, Virasat, and a couple of other films to gain him credibility as a serious filmmaker, but what about Bazmee? Can you really consider Pyaar Toh Hona Hi Tha, No Entry and Welcome any lesser films? If your answer is yes, then you need to rethink the comedy genre.
We, as a cinema informed community, have been grossly underestimating the mainstream comedy films. You like Angoor, but not Welcome? Why? Because one is made by Gulzar, whose off-screen persona and political films compel you to say so?
Digression happened there, so getting back to Bhool Bhulaiyya 2. This is a new story where the legend of Manjulika has been used effectively, but the new film is all about colors, punchlines and some jump scares. Add Sanjay Mishra, Ashwini Kalsekar and Rajpal Yadav’s impeccable comic timing to it and you have a really enjoyable film at your disposal.
Kartik Aaryan and Tabu take the challenge head-on. While there might still be comparisons with Akshay Kumar and Vidya Balan, but the setup of Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2 is different. Apart from a few familiar faces and the closed room inside a fort, there are hardly any similarities. Aaryan is in his element and is improving with each film. He is going to stay here. Tabu, as usual, knows her craft, so no complaints there either. However, the length of the film could have been a little shorter.
Bhool Bhulaiyya 2 has the potential to charm the audiences back to theatres for the mainstream Hindi cinema. It’s just that they need to take a horror-comedy at its face value and not what they thought it would be in their minds.
Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2 is an out and out entertainer and next in the line of typical Bollywood ‘masala’ films.