Blurr: Lady of the Lamps!

Paasee Pannu plays a dual role in Blurr, which she also co-produces. Photo: Publicity Photo

The law of averages applies to the arts worldwide. Spanish writer Orion Paulo cannot always be good, as in Hindi, his story adaptations include the brilliant Badla, a decent but flop The Body and the mediocre Dobaara (note that two of these feature Taapsee Pannu!).

But perhaps we cannot go lower than Blurr, which is by far his weakest thriller, at least as adapted almost wholesale by Ajay Bahl, who directed the solid Section 375 in 2019.

Gautami (Taapsee Pannu) decides to end her life. Gradually going blind and living solo in a hill-resort (Why? How?? Never mind!!!), she suddenly changes her mind after she climbs on a stool and loosens the noose. But a strange presence in the room kicks off the stool below and ensures that she dies.

In a different town, her twin, Gayatri (Taapsee Pannu again) feels something is wrong and wants to go and investigate pronto. Her husband (Gulshan Devaiah) reluctantly accompanies her. When Gautami’s body is discovered, Gayatri knows it is murder. Never mind why and how again. The cops beg to differ, as there is no evidence at all of a second person’s presence, and soon Gayatri comes to know of Gautami’s weird neighbors—a man (Saurabh Chauhan), and his daughter Ira (Nitya Mathur), and a woman named Radha Solanki (Kruttika Desai Khan) whose husband and son have abandoned her, though Radha had settled in that hill station for her son’s treatment.

The cops and the neighbors have seen nothing, there are no fingerprints, but on a further hint, Gayatri investigates her sister’s past and also senses some presence herself. Her sister had settled in the town alone, after some friction with her, as she was going blind and looking for an eye-donor. But there is evidence of a man who was with her even in a hotel resort where she had talen a vacation.

Matters come to a head when that hotel janitor, who knows of the man (he has not really seen him!) is murdered (in the most unconvincing manner) and Gayatri’s husband goes missing—and then found dead. He has also recorded a confession of an affair with Gautami!

Soon, the doctor who treated Gautami asks Gayatri to go through the same “surgery” as Gayatri too has attacks of loss of vision. In return, Gayatri asks that her husband’s body be preserved until she recovers her eyesight. Soon, it is time to unmask the killer as a lot of things happen and Ira tells her who he is.

More than the number of bodies, I lost count of the number of lamps that Gayatri stumbles upon and breaks in the whole film. The motivations of the killer, his supporter and Gautami’s neighbor and his daughter are not put across convincingly and we are vaguely told that Gautami was a musician who hated Rap music and Gayatri is an anthropologist.

Taapsee Pannu puts in a routine—no, make that very routine!—performance. Gulshan Devaiah is wasted, and Abhilash Thapliyal as the killer is the sole bright spot in a dark environment. The story is all about darkness within and around human beings and tries to rely on template-like chills but what stays with you is just the wastefulness of the whole exercise.

Here in short, is a film that should not have been made at all. Most actresses in contemporary times have produced films that they should not have touched with a bargepole (the list began in 2004 with Raveena Tandon Thadani and went on to include Manisha Koirala, Preity Zinta, Shilpa Shetty, Deepika Padukone and Anushka Sharma). The exceptions (Priyanka Chopra in her many multi-lingual productions), Lara Dutta (only Chalo Dilli) and Alia Bhatt (so far, only Darlings) are the exceptions that prove the rule.

Rating: *

ZEE5 presents Zee Studios’, Outsiders Films’ & Echelon Productions’ Blurr Produced by: Taapsee Pannu, Vishal Rana, Pranjal Khandhdiya, Tony D’Souza, Pradeep Sharma & Manav Durga Directed by: Ajay Bahl Written by: Ajay Bahl & Pawan Soni based on Julia’s Eyes by Guillem Morales & Oriol Paulo Music: Ketan Sodha  Starring: Taapsee Pannu, Gulshan Devaiah, Abhilash Thapliyal, Kruttika Desai Khan, Saurabh Chauhan, S.M. Zaheer, Babita Anant, Abhishek Deswal, Nitya Mathur, Sumit Nijhawan & others







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