Several Indian movies that were initially destined to hit theatres, have taken the OTT route. However, as we’re coming too see with films like Gulabo Sitabo, Penguin and Sufiyum Sujatayum, it’s turning out more like a get-out-of-jail free card, with the makers being saved from both ignominy of their films facing a short life in cinema halls and the massive losses in the face of diminishing box office returns. We suspect though that when the dust settles and cinema halls begin operating again at full capacity (however, long it takes) and Indian films regularly opting for digital platforms becomes a thing of the past…when this phase may well and truly be behind us…Virgin Bhanupriya, starring Urvashi Rauteal, has a realistic chance of sitting right at the top of those get-out-of-jail free cards — it’s that bad.
Scroll down for my Virgin Bhanupriya review…
What’s it about
Virgin Bhanupriya, a college-going girl desperate to lose her virginity, goes through several shenanigans, involving random guys, her family and best friend, all in the quest to get laid.
The tile song by composer-duo, Saurabh-Vaibhav, is genuinely melodious and one or two jokes (can’t even remember now if it was one or two) are a bit funny. That’s it!
First things first, Urvashi Ruatela makes for both the most unconvincing college girl and the most unrealistic virgin that ever breathed. She neither embodies the innocence, vulnerability, immaturity or body language of college kids, due to her own shortcomings as an actress, nor does she project the conservatism, orthodoxy, reservations or restrictions common to several middle-class or upper-middle-class families whose children, especially daughters, are expected to stay virgins until marriage (only for them to suddenly handover their body to a stranger post marriage). There’s no rhyme or reason why someone looking like Urvashi and possessing the freedom she has and being blessed with the parents she has and given the company she keeps and having the desire to be sexually active that she does should face any problems in popping her virginity.
Speaking of the company she keeps, her childhood best friend, Rukul Singh (Rumana Molla); this has got to be one of the most toxic character written in Indian films. Writer-Director has zero qualms in making her time and again abuse feminism in the name of playing the guilty-woman card to the point where she openly tells Bhanupriya to do the same things as it’s their right and privilege as women, especially with society being gullible enough to believe them. We don’t know what’s worse: The fact that Lohan believes this is all right or how he maligns the cause of true feminism. And Rumana plays Rukul with such annoying, in-your-face, borderline hysteria that you feel repulsed by her even more, not to mention how she guilt-trips her friend several times into doing her bidding.
However, she’s not the only toxic character and horrible actor on display. We have one-note Bhanupriya’s father (Rajiv Gupta) publicly body-shaming her mother (Archana Puran Singh) and questioning his daughter’s choice of sanitary pads, a friend of one her suitor (Sumit Guklati)’s making homophobic jokes and offering advice to write love letters in and the man she desires, Shartiya (Gautam Gulati), going about throwing eggs on others and trying to make her drink spiked Vodka for the sake of a bet. The only two actors that emerge a tad unscathed from this mess (and only a tad) are Archana Puran Singh and Sumit Gulati. Technically, too, this movie is a disaster with the Johny Lal’s cinematography appearing like photoshopped imaged and Akshay Mohan’s editing being all over the place.
Honestly, and for the interest of sanity, how Vrigin Bhanupriya ever get green-lighted, how did the actors agree to sign on and who in their right mind invested money in this horrendous, cringe-worthy mess? I’m going with 1 out of 5 stars