Producers: Ramesh Taurani and Akshai Puri
Director: Pavan Kriplani
Cast: Saif Ali Khan, Arjun Kapoor, Yami Gautam, Jacueline Fernandez, Javed Jaaferi, Rajpal Yadav, Jamie Lever and Amit Mistry
Streaming on: Disney Plus Hotstar
By Jyothi Venkatesh
The dated film which sets out to take you back to the 90’s follows ghost hunting Tantrik — brothers Vibhooti (Saif Ali Khan) and Chiraunji (Arjun Kapoor), who are hired to capture a demon called Kichkandi that has allegedly haunted a tea estate in the gorgeous hills of Himachal. The tea estate is owned by the sisters Maya (Yami Gautam) and Kanika (Jacqueline Fernandez). While the elder happy go lucky brother Vibhooti lusts after women and money, the younger brother wishes to take the legacy forward of his revered late father ‘Ullat Baba’ by doing noble work. The outdated plot revolves around whether the two are able to succeed in helping the wealthy-turned-bankrupt sisters, from the spirit that haunts the entire area at night.
You can instantly realize when the film’s plot starts unfolding that the director has greatly been inspired by Stree as well as Roohi as far as merging elements of horror and comedy without making either look frivolous. The director also borrows liberally from Evil Dead, Ghostbusters, Zombieland and The Exorcist and last but not the least Scooby Doo.
Also read: Mumbai Diaries 26/11 review: Captivating!
As far as performance goes, all I can state is that Saif Ali Khan has sleepwalked almost throughout the film, while Arjun Kapoor is just about average, Yami Gautam and Jacqueline Fernandez have been underutilized. Javed Jaaferi has been underutilized and almost wasted by the director as a bumbling Punjabi cop Javed Jaaferi who is burdened by daddy issues, as both Chiraunji and Vibhooti take the offer of Kanu to convince her sister Maya to leave the haweli and sell it and settle down in London as it is supposedly haunted tea plantation. I do not know what on earth prompted Rajpal Yadav to take up this role. The only sane role is that of the late actor par excellence Amit Mistry, as the manager of Kanika.
Though at the outset, Bhoot Police hopes to mock superstitions and blind faith and eventually mocks its own premise. The story as well as the insipid screenplay which lacks novelty right from the word go till the end unfortunately fails to hold on its own with its clumsy screenplay and there are times when it just plods on and on without any solid motive and induces you to yawn and lull you to sleep. The saddest aspect of the film is that it neither makes you laugh with its inane comedy nor makes you scared with its horror content. Skip it if possible if you want to save yourself of a bad headache.