‘Ashuddhi’ Review: Hiten Tejwani’s horror thriller highlights existence of Illuminati and will keep you on the hooks
Nivedita Basu, Kavita Radheshyam
Hiten Tejwani, Kavita Radheshyam, Chandana Gowda
Bollywood Bubble Rating
What’s It About
A struggling TV actor (Hiten Tejwani) shifts to a new PG owned by a well-to-do bisexual lady (Kavita Radheshyam). When another new tenant (Chandana Gowda) enters, she brings with her a story which she is covering as a journalist, and it’s about a secret society, which worships the devil. Will Hiten and Kavita end up falling into the thrill of a secret Illuminati-type society? Or will they find out the truth behind Chandana’s story? Well, for that you’ll have to watch the horror-thriller.
Hiten Tejwani holds the mantle on his shoulders as the story revolves around his character. Even though you might think that Hiten is a misfit in this project, but it is actually he, who pivots the story forwards, and that’s the beauty of the character. I wonder why we get to see so less of him onscreen these days.
Kavita Radheshyam is back to her original self and manages to steal the frame in every possible shot. The way she incites the erotic feel in some scenes can easily be compared to some of the best from across India. The way she builds the look and feel of the character and then gives in her cent per cent to the performance, makes you want to repeat the scenes over and over again.
Chandana Gowda enters only in the second episode but manages to leave a mark in pretty much every scene. The way she portrays a 26-year old journalist on the hunt for a story is fabulous. Looking at her performance once can easily say that she indeed has a long way ahead in the film, television and digital industry.
Write-Director Faisal Saif is in his comfort zone, and he makes sure that he hits the ball out of the park for a six. The thrill, the mystery and the way he has placed the shots one after the other shows his remarkable genius. He has proved it before in numerous award-winning projects, and this time also, he brings in his A-game. With this project, he is probably one of the first filmmakers in India to bring in the germ of the idea of Illuminati, which is the basis of many movies in Hollywood. Only time will tell whether this trend catches up and helps Bollywood build its own collection of films and shows on the secrets societies of the world. The story even manages to give the viewers a perfect blend of horror, thriller and erotica.
While there is hardly anything that seems amiss, but the ULLU team could have looked into some shots by the cinematographer, which seem to have been unnecessarily dragged. They could have been either cut out or a few of those long takes at least cut short at the in-house editing table of ULLU.
If you’re looking for a horror thriller to keep you on the edge of your seats, this is the web show. Also, people with a keen interest in Illuminati will love it. To add to it Hiten Tejwani’s innocence and dedication towards the character makes this show a must-watch. Considering the first two episodes leave you high and dry, I am hoping that the remaining episodes satisfy the hunger of getting to know the unknown. I am going with 4 stars.