Cast: Rajkummar Rao, Varun Sharma, Janhvi Kapoor, Alexx O’Nell, Sarita Joshi
Director: Hardik Mehta
Rating: 3.5 Moons
With Stree, producer Dinesh Vijan set a new benchmark in the horror-comedy genre. Now, with Roohi he is once again trying to weave the same magic with his hero-Rajkummar Rao. Roohi stars Rajkummar, Varun Sharma and Janhvi Kapoor in the lead role and although the film is not a sequel to Stree it does try to impart some social lesson with its narrative.
Directed by Hardik Mehta, Roohi takes place in the village of Bagadpur where Bhaura (Rajkummar) and Kattani (Varun) work for a newspaper. They scout out small stories while also doubling up as henchmen for their boss who kidnaps women and gets them forcibly married. This ‘kidnap and marriage’ ritual is an accepted part of the village where even the women are well-versed and ‘okay’ with. However, the village is also well-known to be haunted by a ‘chudail’ who takes possession of women who are about to get married.
The camaraderie and bromance of Bhaura and Kattani are epic. The two ace actors portray best friends whose lives take a dramatic turn when they kidnap Janhvi who is about to get married. Janhvi plays a double role of the innocent Roohi and the terrifying chudail Afza, who takes possession of her body much to the dismay and horror of Bhaura and Khattani.
Rajkummar and Varun steal the show with their crackling chemistry. They are unstoppable and a laugh-a-riot throughout the film. Rajkummar aces the lisp and stutter that his character is burdened with. Varun, on the other hand, proves yet again that he is a class comedic act. After Choocha and Sexa, Kattani will also be remembered. Janhvi, does a fine balance of bringing two contrasting personalities on screen. While she seems innocent, docile and naive as Roohi, she is fierce, angry and explosive as Afza. Janhvi’s transition from one character to another is commendable.
Hardik Mehta’s direction is also commendable and he has managed to bring forth the comedy as well as the horror in the film Roohi. Mrighdeep Singh Lamba’s and Gautam Mehra’s screenplay and dialogue of the film does not let the audience’s attention waver till the very end. Rajkummar and Varun do justice to the funny one-liners in the film and they do not let the punchlines fall. Amalendu Chaudhary does a fantastic job with his cinematography. His camera work brings the necessary thrills and chills in equal measure. Ketan Sodha’s background score also makes the film a scarefest. Sachin-Jigar’s music is also enjoyable.
However, the film’s first half is more entertaining than the second half and the film’s comedy sometimes seems stale and wanting. All in all, Roohi manages to bring a smile on your face while also shelling out the heebie-jeebies. Roohi is a complete masala entertainer and will definitely appeal to the audience.
PeepingMoon.com gives Roohi 3.5 Moons