Bulbbul movie review: Scares go gul

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Bulbbul movie review is here. Produced by Anushka Sharma and Karnesh Sharma, the film stars Avinash Tiwary, Tripti Dimri, Paoli Dam, Rahul Bose and Parambrata Chattopadhyay. Directed by Anvita Dutt, Bulbbul is streaming on Netflix from June 24, 2020.

Immediate reaction when the end credits roll
Netflix’s scare stories are a cause of worry – after Betaal its Bulbbul. At the most it gains some attention in those couple of spooky atmospherics and decent set-pieces but overall, its sinned by inconsistency in providing scares and narrative slackness.

The Story of Bulbbul
Satya (Avinash Tiwary) returns home after years to find his brother Mahendra’s (Rahul Bose) child bride Bulbbul (Tripti Dimri) now grown up in his ancestral village.

Bulbbul movie review

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This could have been a landmark in Indian scares that would have made Bulbbul – a cult Indian horror figure. But writer director Anvita Dutt after a great start makes a mess of it and fails miserably to make even an average spook fest. What looks like a stunning characterisation on paper – Mrs. Bulbbul Chaudhary (Tripti Dimri), God damn gorgeous and equally dangerous in those exquisite sarees and jewellery. No fear and vocal about her feelings and that fan made from peacock feathers creates a rare aura about her.

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In a strange conflict – where at one point the writer Anvita Dutt gets possessed by the director Anvita Dutt and vice versa in another resulting in Bulbbul ending up like a normal chudail (witch) and keeps losing her unique deadly charm frame after frame.

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There are questions which are unanswered like the period of 1881 – there is not a single scene to establish that era. The Bengali setting gives a hint of something lyrical or poetic, but it just looks like a fashion show inspired from Pradeep Sarkar’s Parineeta or Guru Dutt’s Saheb Biwi aur Ghulam.

Further, adding more mirchi and chutney to the wounds, Bulbbul gets extremely predictable and this could have been any routine vampire saga with those tried, tested horror movie gimmicks.

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Nothing stands out apart from Tripti Dimri – only during the initial parts. Worse, Bulbbul sees a terrible waste of a talent like Paoli Dam. Rest of the actors just sign the muster.

Background score in a horror is an important ingredient and less said about Amit Trivedi’s contribution over here the better.

Yes, cinematographer Siddharth Diwan and production designer Meenal Agarwal score a couple of brownie points.

Final words
Bulbbul is a boring mix of slow-burn religious mystery and old-school adventure with a torch of feminism thrown in for that light and enlightenment. The egregious failure of utilizing the character Bulbbul with Indian folk / fairy tales is terrifying indeed.

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Critic Rating

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