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Times of India
While the TV series Ratris Khel Chale shut shop recently, it was a good reminder of how few directors have ventured into paranormal ‘activities’ in Marathi when it comes to the silver screen.
So when one of the few talented and good-looking men of Marathi cinema – Bhushan Pradhan pairs up with comedienne-turned-actress Hemangi Kavi, in a horror film, you’d be mildly intrigued to know more. Prepare to be scared, or not, depending on your exposure to this genre.
Bhootkaal begins with a group of six college friends deciding to go on a vacation after their exams. They soon zero in on an old bungalow in a remote village that belongs to Akshay’s (Pradhan) uncle. Soon the remaining tropes of the genre fall in line – a dilapidated bungalow, a girlfriend (Kavi) who feels a strange ‘presence’, a weird watchman who mumbles mantras in his sleep, a mysterious trunk in a locked room, unidentified sounds, and a tantric. But like a James Bond movie, you must not miss the beginning and not reveal the end either.
This is a complete Anil Arjun Waghmare film; literally… the man has penned the story, written the screenplay and the dialogues, produced and then directed the film as well. Yet you find the film lacking the X factor. It’s an unsavoury cocktail of Purani Haveli and The Conjuring. The editing leaves so many threads open, that it leaves you wondering if you were dreaming all of it.
The first hour is wasted in the antics of the six friends, in fact, the whole film is wasted and the real action happens only in the last 20 minutes or so. The songs are okay, but you don’t remember any of it by the end of the film. Take our advice, if you like horror, watch some old film instead.