We have grown up listening to fairy tales on dwarfs, dragons, elves, fairies, giants, talking animals or witches which takes us to the world of imagination, magic and enchantments. As we grow up in life, the line between myth and reality from fairy tale becomes clear.
After giving us supernatural horror film, Pari, in 2018, Anushka Sharma’s collaboration with Netflix, Bulbbul, is a fresh take on fantasy revenge drama.
Set in the year 1881, Bulbbul tells the story of a 5 year old girl ((Tript Dimri) who gets married to a Zamindar (Rahul Bose), unknowingly. As the series of events takes place post marriage, she falls in love with Zamindar‘s youngest brother, Satya (Avinash Tiwary). As soon as the Zamindar comes to know about the relationship, her world is torn apart.
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First time director Anvita Dutt, does a fine job in terms of story telling which is refreshing take on the bedtime stories. Produced by Anusha Sharma and Karnesh Sharma under the production of Clean Slate Films, Bulbbul opens on a slow note as the story builds upon you. The first half is a complete drag as the film moves at a snail-pace. It is the second half where the film picks up especially after the bloody, blunt and gruesome scene. Welcome to the world of badlands which shows the harsh reality, the obscure status of women in the so-called rich, cultural and traditional family where the selfish members reside. Bulbbul is more than a horror film as it deals with psychology of a sexually abused and domestic violent-faced housewife who loses her love at the behest of a monster.
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Having said that Bulbbul also was the opportunity for the director to make it a good watch if she would have focused on the screenplay in the first half where the story hardly moves and you would wonder if film looks completely stretch. The characters could have been defined with meatier roles.
Fortunately, post 50 minutes, the plot thickens and the drama is unraveled as the film breathes into life and engages the viewers till the climax. Technically, cinematography is good but the consistent use of red color in the background might put you off. Art direction is good while background score is nice. Bulbbul is a performance driven film with lead stars doing justice to their part.
Tripti Dimri steals the show with her solid performance. She gets into the character with ease. Watch for her as she transforms herself from a innocent and impulsive girl into a matured woman who wants to avenge the pain inflicted on her. You will hate Rahul Bose after watching Bulbbul and that is the reason you will love him as an actor. It is good to see the brilliant actor donning the villain role with aplomb after Thakshak and Vishwaroopam. Paoli Dam surprises you with her supporting act. Paramabrata Chattopadhyay shines every time he comes on screen. Avinash Tiwary was just about okay as Satya.
Overall, Bulbbul is an experimental fantasy drama which is supported by brilliant performances. I wish the makers could have worked on the script to make it more interesting. Decent 2.75/5
Bulbbul is currently streaming on Netflix