What Phobia does well is to subvert the genre. Mehak is convinced the ghost of Jiah haunts the apartment and that it is her responsibility to nail the killer. It’s here the film provides comic relief. Only her enthusiastic neighbour Nikki (Yashaswini Dayama) believes her. Shaan, who has so far failed both in his quest to help Mehak and get lucky with her, installs CCTV cameras to shatter Mehak’s theory.What makes Phobia compelling is how relevant it is to contemporary times. It looks at a survivor’s struggle to move on from a traumatic night, one which will remind audiences of a real case in Delhi. Cutting herself off from the world, Mahek still doesn’t feel safe. Kripalani raises the significant topic of a woman’s consent, and her fear of protecting herself from sexual attack. In Radhika Apte, the makers couldn’t have asked for a better actress to take on the responsibility of ensuring that the audiences are hooked to Mahek’s journey and fate. There are wordless scenes in which Apte demonstrates a range of expressions – her extensive background in dance comes in handy here – to suggest the dread of the unknown. Almost without make-up, Apte surrenders herself to play the part of a woman inching closer to a colossal meltdown. Her heavy breathing, her big, wide and alert eyes, her tentative, trembling walk, all contribute in making Phobia a fright fest. Karan Gour’s background score does a commendable job of heightening the tension. The makers tie the loose ends together albeit with a few contrived events and a few question lurking. Nonetheless with Phobia Kripalani succeeds in his mission to keep the audiences engaged and also constantly thinking.