Bhoothnath Returns, Hindi Bollywood Film Movie review, Johnson Thomas, Rating: * * 1/2

Bhoothnath Returns, Hindi Bollywood Film Movie review, Johnson Thomas, Rating: *  *  1/2
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Hindi film review               
Johnson Thomas      


Bhoothnath Returns(Hindi) Rating: *  * ½ The ghost who couldn’t scare children nor rouse up an audience returns in this sequel. Spare humor solid performances don’t make a mark on the ennui though.
 Film: Bhoothnath Returns : Election Seasoning but not quite Entertaining!
Cast: Amitabh Bachchan, Boman Irani, Parth Bhalerao, Usha Jadhav,Sanjay Mishra
Director: Nitesh Tiwari

Rating: *  * ½

 The ghost(Bhoothnath-Amitabh Bachchan) who couldn’t scare children nor round-up an audience gets a new lease of life- for reasons best known to the floundering B R Chopra family. It’s quite in keeping with brand enhancement strategies to shell out a sequel post a successful maiden run but to make one when the original had a lukewarm reception at the Box-office, amounts to sheer chicanery. With Special appearances by Shah Rukh Khan and Ranbir Kapoor and stellar roles by Amitabh Bachchan and Boman irani, the producers must have bargained for renewed interest- what with the elections staring you in the face and the subject incorporating another bit of sermonizing for the audience. But the result is not exactly a surefire winner, neither does it have what it takes to fire-up the interest of children who apparently form a major part of the target audience.

The central conceit itself is not quite becoming. Bhoothnath wants to return to earth as a human as his previous stint as a ghost was not quite successful. He is ridiculed in Bhooth city and considering that his chances of becoming human in the near future are pretty much slim, he is granted permission to re-enter earth as a Bhooth provided he drums up some scares. That’s what the narrative starts off with but mid-way through, it veers off into another implausible direction.   

Bhoothnath’s return to earth brings him the same grief he encountered in the first edition. This time though, he has a friend in spunky little wise-guy, 8 year old Akrot(Parth Bhalerao) -who is the only one who can see him. Akrot who lives with his mother(Usha Jadhav, fresh from her National Award winning turn in ‘Dhag’), has money problems and his friendship with Bhoothnath ensures that his worries are taken care of. Bhau(Boman Irani) , a builder with a nasty reputation , has an axe to grind with Akrot and his partner. Then it’s time for the elections and Akrot persuades Bhoothnath to stand against Bhau in Dharavi. Not quite believable, but there’s some room for humor and drama. 
The main problem with the film is it’s wayward script written by the director himself  along with co-scriptwriter Piyush. Opportunism could only get it so far. Recent films like ‘Jai Ho’ and ‘Youngistaan’ expressed a similar sentiment and one more film with an election backdrop was just one too many. Especially when it’s a little too preachy and extremely far-fetched in it’s plotting. A ghost standing for elections, then losing his powers and finally enthusing the people of his constituency to vote for Parivartan sounds and feels as intangible as it seems. There’s a  smattering of humor in the play-off between Bhoothnath and Bhau, spoofy referencing and satisfying returns in the little boy Parth’s astounding savoir faire. Boman, Sanjay Mishra and Usha Jadhav are first rate too. SRK’s and Ranbir Kapoor’s public serving presence is just that.   Amitabh though does seem to be settling into camp mode. His mannerisms and actions are ennui laden. Music by Ram Sampath, Yo Yo Honey Singh and Anjjan has contemporary affective beat but it’s not infectious enough. Frankly this Bhoothnath had nowhere to go  but fast-track down to the tube!


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