Bulbbul Review: A dark, absorbing Indian fable that deals with delicate themes!

Siddarth Srinivas -

Bulbbul Review: A dark, absorbing Indian fable that deals with delicate themes!

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Format: Film
Platform: Netflix
Movie Rated: 16+
Genre: Horror, Supernatural, Thriller
Language: Hindi
Digital Premiere Date: 24 June 2020

 

Most of the films and series coming onto Netflix in the past few months have been in the dark space, but the platform has now hit a new high with its latest film Bulbbul, which has dropped today. With Anushka Sharma being the producer here, a good film is the least that one would expect, keeping in mind the amount of attention that a show like Paatal Lok generated.

What’s the story about?
In its 90-minute space, Bulbbul deals with a lot of topics such as child marriage, abusive men, broken relationships and more (which would lead to spoilers if discussed now). The film begins with a kid asking for a story of folklore to be narrated, but soon transitions into a tale of four characters and how they intertwine themselves as they are terrorized by a witch who is reeling in the city.

Analysis
What makes Bulbbul different is the fact that the entire story takes place in the 20th century, with Bengal being the location. The visuals and the period setting are superbly done, and suck us into the narrative even though the domino effect takes place only 40 minutes into the story. The amount of world-building and establishment of characters in the first half of the film takes time, and director Anvita Dutt makes sure that she isn’t rushing ahead with the plot that she has in hand. The film’s real shocks come in past the one-hour mark, where the real truth behind what we have been fed with so far comes into the limelight. What makes Bulbbul click is the show-not-tell effect that works in favour of the film, and makes us realize what really has happened over the years in the storyline. In the end, one may not get the feeling of watching a great film, but the message that it brings forward is something that will resonate with one and all.

Performances
Tripti Dimri is definitely the show-stealer when it comes to Bulbbul, making a huge impression with her performance which is charming, as well as manages to evoke the emotions that the character demands. She brings a lovely aura to the film right from her entry, as it is a pleasure to see what she brings to her role. On the other hand is Avinash Tiwary, who does a fair job in his cut-out space. Rahul Bose, Pauli Dam and Parambratta Chattopadhyay are good in their parts, with Rahul getting the most impactful shade of the story.

Music and other Departments
Amit Trivedi’s scintillating score is one which will definitely stay with you after you watch the film, for his haunting theme fits into the mood of the film very well. The cinematography and the production design is excellent to say the least, bringing us truly superb visuals which we wouldn’t be able to see too often.

Highlights
Tripti Dimri’s performance and the big basket of themes that were discussed within one and half hours are the biggest highlights of Bulbbul. Technically strong too.

Drawbacks
Despite the 90-minute runtime, the film feels slow and will definitely not be everybody’s cup of tea.

Did I enjoy it?
Though I did take some time to warm up to it, I got engrossed in the final stretch of the film.

Do I recommend it?
If you liked the trailer, go ahead. Bulbbul is a fine little fable that mirrors current mindsets and actions.

 

Synopsis : The story will revolve around Satya and his brother's child bride who are separated when Satya is sent to a foreign country and when he comes back he finds out that his brother has abandoned his wife.
Cast : Avinash Tiwary, Tripti Dimri, Rahul Bose, Paoli Dam, Parambrata Chattopadhyay
Directors : Anvita Dutt Guptan
Producer/s : Anushka Sharma, Karnesh Sharma
Cinematographer (DoP) : Amit Trivedi
Production House : Clean Slate Films
Music : Siddharth Diwan

Movie Duration (minutes) : 94
Digital Premiere Date : June 24, 2020

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