Bhakshak review: Gritty, Intense and Visceral

Bhakshak review: Gritty, Intense and Visceral

Bhakshak review: Gritty, Intense and Visceral

What: Bhakshak - Bhumi Pednekar spearheads a chilling tale of conscientious journalism and heinous crime.

Bhakshak movie synopsis

Based on true incidents which happened in Muzaffarpur, Bihar, director Pulkit’s Bhakshak hits your conscience and casts a sting at our society’s apathy and callous attitude towards the poor and helpless. The tour de force here is Bhumi Pednekar, who plays a fearless, feisty news reporter embarking on an arduous journey of blowing the lid on a child abuse racket at an orphan girls’ shelter home in Bihar.

Following a discomforting start, the plot ticks off with Vaishali Singh (played by Bhumi) who runs a small-time news channel, Koshish News, for the local circuits with his cameraman, Bhaskar (played by Sanjay Mishra) gets hold of a news byte on unscrupulous dealing and sexual predation which has not been given any light despite social audits conducted by the NISS at the Munawarpur shelter home. The man behind all this is a powerful press baron, Bansi Sahu (Aditya Srivastava) with a vicious nexus with other honchos in the circuit, including the CWC chairman, Mithilesh Sinha (played by Chittaranjan Tripathy) and a henchman led by Sonu.

Vaishali sets a tough target for punishing the perpetrators and the battle lines with Bansi are drawn but she pays a heavy price for this – with danger at every juncture and threat to the family comprising her husband, Arvind (played by Suraj Sharma) and brother in law (played by Danish Iqbal).


Bhakshak movie review

Pulkit, who made Maroon(2017, Netflix) and Bose: Dead or Alive earlier, displays a nuanced and lucid understanding of the sensitive subject and the milieu. His world-building boasts of authenticity with its set of people, the ethos, and the dialect. He creates tension and a provocative sense of doom at every juncture keeping the audience engrossed with the proceedings. Even though the momentum drops during the second hour, Bhumi’s terrific and committed portrayal redeems the shortcoming.

To give credits where due, I liked the intimate observation of the protagonist’s ordeal in navigating the work-ife balance. She is pressured for maternity, reprimanded for coming home late and even for her ambitions. Her in-laws take stabs at her, we also see a heated argument between the couple. We have all seen them, but the actor’s craft and honesty leave an indelible mark in her repertoire. She aces the characters, saddled with despair, that thrive in India’s hinterland.

Aditya Srivastava’s Bansi is a sheer menace in this dark saga of heinous crime. The Gulaal actor is simply brilliant and it’s amazing to see him perform a negative character with such elan. Always! Sanjay Mishra is fabulous and adds a dose of humour in the heavy narrative. Sai Tamhankar in her brief role as SSP registers an impact.

Rooted in realism, the film maintains its dignity and tone without going melodramatic. Bhumi’s final monologue is scathing and underlines a very important message that marks the triumph of the writing and directorial strength.

Bhakshak – final words

Going with 4 stars out of 5 for Bhakshak. The 2 and half hour film streaming on Netflix engages and entertains in the same breath.


Rating : 4/5

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About Ahwaan Padhee

Ahwaan Padhee

Ahwaan Padhee, is an IT Techie/Business Consultant by profession and a film critic/cinephile by passion, is also associated with Radio Playback as well, loves writing and conducting movie quizzes. More By Ahwaan Padhee

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