Bhoot – Part One: The Haunted Ship & A Troubled Psyche (Movie Review)

‘Bhoot – Part One’: The Haunted Ship & A Troubled Psyche (Movie Review)

The latest Bollywood horror film “Bhoot – Part One,” starring Vicky Kaushal, follows a young shipping officer who goes on to untangle the mystery surrounding a haunted ship named Sea Bird. The film tries to scare you but fails miserably because of all those cliché elements associated with the genre.

‘Bhoot’ (transl. Ghost) does have a few scary scenes in a storyline that had the potential to offer more. However, what debutant writer-director Bhanu Pratap Singh could not achieve is the narration that could have been interesting with a better screenplay.

Let’s get to the story – the film follows Prithvi, a shipping company official who is assigned to move a drifted ship Sea Bird from Juhu Beach in Mumbai city. While it is unknown how this deserted vessel floats itself away from its original port, people soon start dying around the beach. Things get a supernatural turn when Prithvi starts experiencing weird things happening in and around the ship. He also has a personal angle to the story owing to his troubled past in which he lost his wife and daughter in an unfortunate river-rafting incident.

Here is the movie trailer of ‘Bhoot – Part One’

‘Bhoot: Part One’ plays well to an extent as the story mixes up the typical horror elements with psychological drama. Generally, the combination works well with an intelligent screenplay but here while the characterization and the performance of Kaushal are good, the screenplay is repetitive.

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Nevertheless, the film’s decent cinematography, especially the interior of the ship, creates a terrifying atmosphere to keep our imagination alive. As viewers, we are asked to delve both into a disturbing history linked to the ship as well as the troubled psyche of its chief protagonist.

Big-time movie buffs or horror story lovers would not find ‘Bhoot’ scary even though the film has too many jump-scares. The only idea that looks promising throughout, which many filmmakers have experimented with many times in the past, is the human psyche and how grief has the potential to drive our imagination and create things that are associated with psychology and may even be termed paranormal.

As far as performance is concerned, Vicky Kaushal is one of the most bankable actors in the Hindi film industry and he does not disappoint here. He is well supported by the side characters, even though other characters are too thin on paper. Yes, ‘Bhoot’ is atmospheric but not scary enough, as most of us expected. I would rather stream Ram Gopal Varma’s 2003 supernatural horror ‘Bhoot’.

Where to watch "Bhoot: Part One - The Haunted Ship" (2020)
This post is written, edited and published by the Cinecelluloid staff.

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