Varun Dhawan’s Film Is Helped Along By Lively Performances -3.5 Stars

Bhediya Review: Varun Dhawan's Movie Aided By Lively Performances

Varun Dhawan in Bediya. (Thanks: maddockfilms)

Cast: Varun Dhawan, Kriti Sanon, Abhishek Banerjee and Deepak Dobriyal

Director: Amar Kaushik

Rating: 3.5 stars (out of 5)

The Street duo producer Dinesh Vijan and director Amar Kaushik reunited to deliver a film that is substantially more than just another horror-comedy. It is in many ways in the same zone as the 2018 film but very different in spirit, substance and style.

It makes room for skepticism but mixes it with a great level of fidelity and teasing humor that prevents the film from losing its way in the kind of confusing convolutions that mar Maddock Films’ previous offerings, Roohi.

Bediya, Toplined by Varun Dhawan Exploring the power of wild transmogrification, rests mainly on the consequences of the human-animal conflict – it plays out in a tangible yet fairy-like setting where the fantastical and the real intermingle. However, as the story unfolds, it hits the ropes and allows other important themes to find their way in.

The director, working with the screenplay by Niren Bhatt, not only dovetails the message of environmental conservation into the folksy storyline but also dwells on questions about language, identity and culture with dashes of comicality robustly thrown in for the purpose of livening up the great debate. importance.

Bediya perform a generally successful balancing act between farce and fable. The latter is firmly rooted in local myths and legends. The 120-year-old shaman is a key character who embodies the role traditional knowledge and beliefs play in the lives of people who have been supported by the hills and forests for generations.

Parts of the film could definitely do with some trimming, but, overall, the director maintains a firm grip on the tone and tenor of the narrative, which allows Bediya to wrest from the audience the suspension of disbelief, which is obviously very important for a film that rides on free-flowing notions that can be easy to dismiss as argle-bargle can avoid.

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The film’s technical attributes – led by mood-setting lighting and lensing (by cinematographer Jishnu Bhattacharjee) and evocative production design – are of a tall order. Especially interesting are the visual effects in the pivotal scene that shows the process of the protagonist becoming a wolf and gaining the ability and strength to jump over all obstacles.

The cast of Bediya including Abhishek Banerjee, who was one of the three friends in Street who encountered a beautiful apparition that spells preternatural disturbances for men. In the end credits scene, Bediya acknowledges debt to StreetThe movie that inaugurated Maddock Films’ horror-comedy universe now seems to be back on course after being forgotten and slow. Roohi deviating.

Bediya reworks genre conventions to craft jungle stories facing the threat of deudation in the name of development. The movie would have had a bigger boost if it had been shorter. But even though the runtime is more than two and a half hours, the plot elements put together form a cohesive whole without overly straining credulity.

In the popular imagination, perpetuated no doubt by the genre of cinema and fairy tales we have been told for decades, a bhedya is a dreaded animal, a wild predator that never made peace with mankind. In this film, these creatures are given a surprisingly positive perspective that allows the benign and fearsome to coexist and make room for ambiguities in our response to the violent depredations of our animals.

For sure, wolves are not native to any part of the world Bediya has been arranged. But this is not a movie that is meant for absolute factual truth. Located in a fantasy world, wild animals are given a mythical cloak to justify their existence in the wilds of Arunachal. This creature is a forest animal, a kind of wild dog with very sharp fangs that can cause great damage to humans, and, more importantly than anything else, a warning sign for development voters who do not consider ecological problems.

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A road construction contractor from Delhi, Bhaskar (Varun Dhawan), arrives in the Arunachal Pradesh town of Ziro in the company of his cousin Janardhan (Abhishek Banerjee). He has a blueprint that maps out the dimensions of the proposed infrastructure project that he has reason to believe will transform the place completely.

The Cirebon duo is joined by local point person Jomin (NSD alumnus Paalin Kabak in his first film role), whose job it is to help outsiders convince local people of the urgent need for a new road through the forest. That’s easier said than done.

Bediya represents the clash between tradition and the so-called modernity through a clear and understandable divide between the elders of the city who consider the forest as a sacred space and the young population addicted to consumerist inducements that depend on technology and electronic gadgets.

The wolf bite that throws Bhaskar’s plan into disarray is central to this allegory about greed for greenbacks and diminishing green cover and about humanity’s enormous capacity to harm the environment. This triggered panic among the townspeople. A police outpost swings into action but the police are against a phenomenon that they can barely explain, let alone crack.

Bhaskar and his friends – among them Panda (Deepak Dobriyal), a native of Nainital who has lived in Arunachal Pradesh all his life and is suspected of being swayed by ulterior motives, and Anika (Kriti Sanon), a veterinarian with no choice. to treat Bhaskar although the complicated case is also out of his league – stopped in their tracks as mystifying and fatal attacks by wolves multiply.

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An important thread that runs through Bediya focused on Janardhan’s attitude towards the place and its people. Disregarding Jomin’s feelings, he cracks casual jokes at the latter’s expense, blurting out his Hindi and making offensive assumptions.

The casual verbal indiscretions threaten to drive a wedge between the Cirebon boy and the local guy and become the key strand of the story. The resolution takes its time, but when it does the script wraps up the situation and its consequences powerfully, if only in a way that hits you in the face too.

Bediya, both enjoyable and thought-provoking, aided throughout by lively performances. Varun Dhawan gave an unconventional role in the best shot. Abhishek Banerjee and Paalin Kabak are fantastic with their comic timing and dramatic flourishes. Kriti Sanon has relatively limited footage but does everything necessary to not overpower the image.

BediyaThanks to the inventive and intriguing way that it adopts with a genre that has spawned many films over the decade from Paul Schrader’s Cat People and John Landis’ An American Werewolf in London to (closer to home) Rajkumar Kohli’s. Jaani Dushman and Mahesh Bhatt successfully (both of which find mention in this movie), has its own unique footprint that makes it watchable all the way.

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