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Roohi movie review : Maybe it isn't that bad...?

Updated: Aug 10, 2021

Roohi is a roughly 2 hrs long, Hindi horror comedy-drama film directed by Hardik Mehta. It stars Rajkumar Rao, Varun Sharma, and Janhavi Kapoor. If you are looking for a movie with a typical Bollywood style but an unusual ending, give this movie a try.

Roohi is about two chums Bhawra ( Rajkummar Rao) and Kattanni ( Varun Sharma) who are told to kidnap a girl named Roohi (Janhavi Kapoor) so that she can marry her admirer as a part of their town’s customary tradition. The tradition consists of kidnapping a girl against her will by the man who wants to wed her. When an unforeseen death occurs in the groom's family, both the friends are forced to stay with Roohi in an abandoned wood factory. During their stay, they discover that Rooh is possessed by a demonic spirit identifying herself as Afza. Bharwa falls for the human Roohi and tries to get the spirit exorcised out of her, while his pal Kattanni is enamored by the spirit, Afza. They later come to discover that roohi is a Mudiyapairi' (a witch with backward turned feet) and that Roohi will continue to be possessed unless she gets married to someone along with Afza possessing her.

The film is supposed to feature a feminist storyline but was not very successful at doing so. It is a rather long movie with a relatively difficult-to-follow storyline that includes unnecessary plot lines. Certain parts of the movie could be considered cringe but in my opinion, it adds to the characters.

That being said, the film Roohi features great acting by Rajkumar Rao and Varun Sharma, the supporting cast has also put up a great performance. The movie also features different levels of ‘out of the box’ plot lines. The movie is able to effectively deliver on the comedy aspects of the storyline and scripting. The writers have at least tried to address social issues in India like lack of female consent, belief in superstition, and the lengths that people go to in order to follow them. This can be considered a start for Bollywood.

*spoiler warning for the following paragraph*

Please don’t read the following if you don’t want major spoilers, for spoiler-free content, skip to the next paragraph. In the end movie, Roohi marries Afza in efforts of becoming independent. This action could be viewed as an acceptance arc where Roohi accepts herself for who she is and becomes empowered. But, I’d like to believe that this part, along with the acceptance arc, also sheds light on the LGBT+ community in India. Roohi marries the Female ghost possessing her, whom she once despised, accepting the fact that she can love herself regardless of what society says.

To be honest I can’t tell if this movie is so bad it’s good or if it’s actually good. Regardless, I recommend you watch the movie for at least the acting and humor if not anything else. If you do decide to watch it, I suggest you do so with an open mind focusing on the comedy of the film and without using logical reasoning, as we should for most Bollywood movies.

FYI: Roohi is not a sequel to the movie Stree.

If you want to see the trailer for Roohi, check it out below,

By : Siya Tanwar (writer for lucid lama)

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