Sanjay Dutt is back on screen in Omung Kumar’s high octane drama that promises to be laced with emotion and action. The father daughter saga played by Dutt and Aditi Rao Hydari is a revenge drama where a father seeks to avenge the injustice metted to his little girl. We have seen similar plots in two films that released earlier this year. Raveena Tandon’s Maatr and Sridevi’s Mom. In Bhoomi, it is the father who takes up the mission to bring his daughters rapists to justice in his own way. Does the film succeed in tugging at heartstrings? Does it move you with the emotionally heavy content? Does it do justice to Sanjay Dutt as an actor and prove an ideal comeback vehicle? Read my review
What’s it about
Arun Sachdev (Sanjay Dutt) and his daughter Bhoomi (Aditi Rao Hydari) live a simple, happy life in Agra. While Arun owns a handmade footwear making shop, popular a with tourists, Bhoomi is the go to person for the various Shaadis happening around town. She works as a beautician and wedding planner and coming home late from work is a regular in her line of work. Little do the father-daughter know that this one aspect of her life will be enough to take her down in the court of law and tag her ‘characterless’ in the eyes of the ‘righteous’ samaaj, denying her the justice she deserves after being raped by Dhaulee (Sharad Kelkar) and his two men.
The unfortunate incident changes the father-daughter’s life forever and Arun decides that it’s better to not seek justice at all if it means getting his daughter raped again, by the questions she would be asked and the character assassination she will have to go through during the investigation process. The two try hard to forget the past and move on, but the demons of the past raise their heads again, giving Sanjay Dutt a renewed motive to find justice. This time, in his own way. ALSO READ: Bhoomi Quick Review: Sanjay Dutt Returns As An Action Hero
Sanjay Dutt! He is back and with a bang. Baba has always awed us in his action avatar, but here in Bhoomi, we see him as an weathered, helpless, sensitive and vulnerable father, who blames himself for not being able to keep his daughter away from the evils in the society. When he does take on the action hero avatar, he does that keeping his age and character in mind, without going OTT and keeping it as real as possible.
Another actor who makes a comeback in Bhoomi is Shekhar Suman as Tajendra Mishra or Taj. He plays a guide in the film, Dutt’s best friend and ally. He plays the perfect sidekick to Dutt and it was a treat to watch these two talented actors from back in the day together.
Special mention: Bhoomi does justice to its theme of rape and revenge. It beautifully throws light on taboo topics and our mindsets about issues like period, sexual assault and victim bashing. Throughout the film, Dutt’s character stands tall with his daughter, refusing to blame his her for what happened, helping her move on but refusing to hide, forgive or forget what happened.
The film moves at a slow pace and while it is high on emotional content, it lacks the punch. How the revenge plan is put into action is neither convincing nor gripping. Aditi Rao Hydari plays a rape survivor but holds back herself in scenes that had potential to pull at heartstrings, this failing to inspire awe. The courtroom drama panned out in the most disinteresting and disengaging way, marred by the mechanical and frivolous statements that are stereotypical to rape cases. I am okay that the film didn’t copy the drama like in Damini or the more recent Pink, but taking some inspiration would have helped.
What to do
Watch it for Sanjay Dutt. The star makes a comeback in his top form! Bhoomi will definitely leave you wishing to see more of Dutt.
India.com rating: 2 stars