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Bhoothnath Returns, the much better sequel to Bhoothnath, talks about a mix of emotions with a simple message: get up and vote.


A ghost of a minister


Amitabh Bachchan, who returns as Bhoothnath, has a warm screen-sharing generosity. While this doesn’t do wonders for ‘Bhoothnath’ the character, it helps maintain sincerity to the movie’s last hour and a half.

A scene from movie, "Bhoothnath Returns". – Courtesy Photo
A scene from movie, "Bhoothnath Returns". – Courtesy Photo

Bhoothnath finds ghost world clean and perfect. He is the town’s latest joke – a ghost who couldn’t scare a little boy. With his pride hurt, Bhoothnath travels back to Earth to scare a few children – which with the way the youth is these days, translates as a failed mission – so that he can return with his pride intact.

A scene from movie, "Bhoothnath Returns". – Courtesy Photo
A scene from movie, "Bhoothnath Returns". – Courtesy Photo

Bhoothnath succeeds quite early in the movie, with help from Akhroat (Parth Bhalerao) – a poverty-stricken, incorruptible, wise guy, who can see him. The two become ghost-busting partners, and later decide to take on a local criminal-turned-politician (Boman Irani) by entering politics.

A scene from movie, "Bhoothnath Returns". – Courtesy Photo
A scene from movie, "Bhoothnath Returns". – Courtesy Photo

Director Nitesh Tiwari gracefully pulls off the ambiguity of Bhootnath Returns, as the movie slowly merges its plot into a socially relevant commentary on the average man’s voting power.

A scene from movie, "Bhoothnath Returns". – Courtesy Photo
A scene from movie, "Bhoothnath Returns". – Courtesy Photo

Songs added as fillers are not too annoying and appearances by Shah Rukh Khan, Ranbir Kapoor and Anurag Kashyap are aptly added.

Kamaljeet Negi’s cinematography is surprisingly minimalistic. The screenplay grounds itself by keeping a low profile and relying on familiar characters. Bhalerao is the movie’s backbone, and at times the young actor’s skill overtakes Bachchan’s decades of acting experience.


The final word


Bhoothnath Returns’ premise is cleverly overpowered by its mildness – and of course, Bhalerao’s entrancing performance.

The movie’s punch – and star rating – may tail off a few years later, for now though, it just works.


Distributed by BR Films, ‘Bhootnath Returns’ is rated ‘U’ for universal themes and a public service message almost everyone knows but are too laid back to implement.

Directed by Nitesh Tiwari; Produced by Bhushan Kumar, Krishan Kumar, Renu Ravi Chopra; Written by Nitesh Tiwari, Piyush Gupta; Cinematography by Kamaljeet Negi; Editing by Chandrashekhar Prajapati; Music by Palash Muchhal Meet Bros Anjjan, Ram Sampath, Yo Yo Honey Singh.

Starring: Amitabh Bachchan, Parth Bhalerao, Boman Irani, Anurag Kashyap,Usha Jadhav, Sanjay Mishra, Brijendra Kala, Usha Nadkarni.