|Cast||Mithun Chakraborthy, Nilu Phule, Ranjeeta, Ranjan Garewal, Shashi Ranjan, Om Shivpuri, Sharad Saxena, Ravi Kumar, Razia Sultana, Chandrashekhar, Mushtaq Merchant, CS Dubey, Jagdish Raaj|
|Story||AVM Arts Story Department|
|Director||S U Sayed|
Bhayaanak is a Bollywood horror movie that hit theaters in 1979. The movie has a stellar cast. In fact, the cast is a bit unbelievable at first. It has Mithun Chakraborthy, Ranjeeta and Nilu Phule. Nilu Phule has done very few Bollywood horror movies, so its interesting to see that he has done such a off-the-mainstream movie. Bhayaank is a almost a decade before the Ramsays released Veerana. The production and the art is right at home with the kitsch that one connects with the Ramsays’ creations like Veerana, Tahkhana and Bandh Darwaza. The seventies was an interesting decade for Bollywood movie makers. Some of the most interesting horror movies launched that decade, Do Gaz Zameen Ke Neeche, Andhera being two solid examples. Here’s our review of the Bollywood horror movie, Bhayanak.
A young police officer, Vijay, recently married, is transferred to a remote village, Mangalpur. He decides to travel to the village first, make preparations and then call his wife. Unfortunately, while his wife reaches the village, she disappears mysteriously. A few days later, the authorities find her dead body. Since then, the police officer vows to bring the perpetrators of the crime to justice. In the same village stay two different tribes. The warring chief’s respective son and daughter are in love with each other, but their fathers will have none of that. They elope, but reach a strange group of people that live in a mansion. The group of people routinely sacrifice young men and women to their demon god. With the young couple in trouble and a angry police man on the trail of the cult, who will win, and who will survive? To know this, you need to watch Bhayanak.
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Bhayaank has aged well. It is a unique horror movie and it’s really much removed from the common stories we see in Bollywood horror movies. The movie doesn’t have a witch or a demon or a zombie. This movie could also be one of the first Bollywood movies about cults. Yes, other Bollywood movies like Veerana have had a cult, but then, it had a witch as well. In Bhayaanak, the family is quite simply, devil worshipers who are looking to sacrifice more young men and women to their demon king. Bhayaanak is a unique movie in many respects. There’s the absolute absence of a demon, and there’s no witch in sight as well. Its a simple action movie, but the villains are a human sacrificing cult instead of a smuggling group. That this movie released in the seventies is a marvel in itself. In the seventies, I doubt many Indians had even an inkling of an idea of what a cult and devil worshipping was – at least the urban crowd that watched movies in a theater. In the seventies, Indians were more conversant with the hippy moment.
Because there’s Mithun, this Bollywood horror movie has two or three decent action sequences, much different than the staid fare we have seen in other horror movies that followed Bhayaanak. This is a seventies movie, even so, it has enough steamy scenes to set itself right in the nineties. Bhayaanak is modern for more reasons than one. I always thought that it was the Ramsays who liked to break couples. But in Bhayaanak, you get a taste of what lies ahead for the Bollywood horror niche.
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