Bhoot Returns – India, 2012

Bhoot Returns “Ghost Returns” – is a 2012 Indian Hindi Bollywood 3D horror film directed by Ram Gopal Varma and written by Ravi Shankar.

The film stars Manisha Koirala, J. D. Chakravarthy, Madhu Shalini and Alayana Sharma in the lead role. It is a sequel to the 2003 film Bhoot, also directed by Varma.

Tarun, an architect, moves into a luxurious bungalow with his wife, Namrata, and their children, 10-year-old Taman and 6-year-old Nimmi. During an exploration of the house, Nimmi finds a doll, and includes someone named ‘Shabbu’ in all her activities.

The family mistakes Nimmi’s new doll to be Shabbu but are surprised when Nimmi points to an empty space and introduces her invisible friend as Shabbu. Her parents suspect her wild imagination as the reason for her new ‘friend’.

Soon, Tarun’s younger sister, Pooja, surprises the family with a visit. As Tarun, Namrata and Pooja discuss Nimmi’s fixation over Shabbu, the family servant, Laxman, is sure of a spirit’s presence in the house. Laxman’s worries receive severe backlash from Tarun, an ardent rationalist. Soon, each night at the bungalow seems to turn for the worse, with knocks at unearthly hours, demonic sounds and eerie movements. Tarun suspects Laxman to be the mischief-maker, trying to prove his points. As Nimmi’s fixation with Shabbu increases, the family decides to consult a psychiatrist. The psychiatrist explains Nimmi’s imaginary friend as a result of her loneliness and terms it as a common technique used by children to grab attention.

Laxman’s sudden disappearance and the increasing curiosity in Pooja to find answers for the ongoing activities make her install wireless cameras at various places in the house, which record Nimmi playing with what seems like a ghostly apparition. Tarun’s mind starts reeling as he sees the captured footage; it is proof enough for the disturbed family to finally decide to leave the house. But the house has other plans: Nimmi is found missing the next morning…

Rajeev Masand of CNN-IBN said the film is time-pass entertainment, as Varma succeeds in keeping you on the edge, and the film does deliver a few good scares in 3D. Madhureeta Mukherjee of Times of India gave it 2 stars. “We did leave with one horrifying thought though – of this Bhoot returning (in a third instalment). Hellllppp!!!” Rediff Movies said “Bhoot Returns has quite a few nail-biting moments but ends abruptly”. Roshni Devi of Koimoi gave it 0.5 star “This Bhoot had no business returning. RGV could have at least saved the original Bhoot from being ruined by trying to make a sequel out of it.” Rohan J.Tambe of Independent Bollywood gave it 1.5 stars and said “Save your money and time by skipping this movie”.

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