The story starts with the montage of footage shot by an American reporter, who then is invited to shoot the village Bagadpur’s tradition – bridenapping (or as said, ‘pakdai shaadi’ in the film). Bhawra Pandey (Rajkummar Rao) and Kattani Qureshi (Varun Sharma) are professional bridenappers until they are asked to abduct Roohi (Janhvi Kapoor). A pro tip: When your father is carrying two of your pictures to describe your looks to the police, telling them, “Kabhi kabhi yeh aisi bhi dikhti hai,” you definitely need to replace your father.
The story’s central crux revolves around two of the most idiosyncratic people kidnapping a girl trapped with a mudiya-pairi (some desi kind of spirit) hunting for a body to live in forever. The problem starts when both Bhawra and Kattani fall in love with the same girl… but no, there’s a twist. That’s what the rest of the story is all about.
Rajkummar Rao did set a benchmark for himself in Ludo; he now needs an extremely brilliant movie to match that, and Roohi isn’t that. He continues to play around with his accent. There were scenes where the audio was so muddled you couldn’t understand anything. Varun Sharma is the MVP here as he is a part of every funny scene in the film. There’s no good humour without Varun, and that says a lot about what he could bring in as a performer. This only serves as a teaser to what Rohit Shetty could extract from him in Cirkus. It’s a dual-duel for Janhvi Kapoor as she’s spirit as well, and she has nothing much to do as her human form. She excels in the horror portions, a special shout-out Nikita Kapoor’s ‘nerve-racking’ prosthetics and make-up. Manav Vij hasn’t given a chance to act to his potential, rather than he’s wasted into portraying a brainless-brawny. Sarita Joshi proved why she’s known as the master of natural acting in just a few minutes she got.
Roohi has its moments, but they’re very few to label this as an entertaining product overall. The acting department shines, and the others remain to be in between from bad to moderately good.