Shriram Raghvan’s fascination for dark thrillers is a known fact what with his previous movies Ek Hasina Thi & Jhonny Gaddar. He continues his fascination for the same with Badlapur.
The basic premise has many layers and Shriram Raghvan along with writer Arijit Biswas try to show the psychological side of revenge as to how a Advertising Professional Raghav (Varun Dhawan) becomes psychotic after his wife Misha (Yami Gautam) and kid Robin get killed in a bank robbery and he plans to avenge the killers.
The basic message that Shriram wanted to portray was how revenge makes a normal human being act like an animal and in his rage he commits crimes which he does not want. This he portrayed through his two principal characters Liak (Nawazuddin Siddiqui) who commits the bank robbery and kills Raghav’s wife and kid and on the other side Raghav who in his madness to take revenge commits a crime which was not intended.
Every character in the movie is very well etched and very complex, but where the movie looses is its weak narration and slow pace. The 134 mins movie could have been trimmed at least by 15 to 20 mins to create more impact. Though the climax has a message but the overall narration does not create an impact. The first half shows promise and you expect some twist in the second half which unfortunately does not come and results in a half baked second half. I felt in some sequences the blood quotient was too stark than required.
It is the performances which is the biggest highlight of the movie, Varun Dhawan as Raghav tries to do a role which was different from his previous movies and succeeds to a large extent especially in sequences where he underplays his anger. The best performance is undoubtedly of Nawazuddin Siddiqui who plays the antagonist Liak with such perfection that he overshadows everybody in the frame. Huma Qureshi as the prostitute Jhimli gives another riveting performance. Yami Gautam as Misha has nothing much to do. Radhika Apte as Kanchan is good but could have been better, rather she looks quite jaded. Divya Dutta as Shobha the social worker has nothing much to do but still she shines in her brief role. Kumud Mishra, a brilliant actor but underrated by Bollywood shines in the role of the inspector who investigates the bank Robbery. Rest of the cast like Ashwini Kalsekar, Pratima Kazmi, Vinay Pathak do a brilliant job in their brief roles and makes the movie a worth watch.
Music by Sachin Jigar is melodious, especially Jeena Jeena & the rock Jee Karda. Anil Mehta’s brilliance shines through the magical cinematography which captures the suburbs well….
Shriram Raghavan gets the premise right but fails in making it an impactful narration which was the biggest flaw. The pace in the second half is so slow that you want the movie to end.
It is good to see that story telling in Bollywood is changing and film makers are trying different subjects and different formats of storytelling. But being different does not mean that the entertainment quotient is missing or the pace needs to be slow.
Vikramjit Singh the debutant director and writer of Roy completely loose the plot in being different. Roy tells the story of hot shot film maker Kabir (Arjun Rampal) who is not only known for his successful movies but also for his Casanova ways and his link ups. While making his third movie he meets Ayesha (Jacqueline Fernandez) a British film maker while shooting his movie in Malaysia and falls in love. As a film maker he gets the writer’s block in scripting his movie which is based on a thief ROY (Ranbir Kapoor). Somewhere Kabir’s personal life starts reflecting in the script and what happens when Kabir gets entangled in the web of real life and his imaginary life of his movie forms the crux of the rest of the movie.
Vikramjit’s concept is different and very complex and trying such a movie in itself is a big task. But where Vikram jit fails as a writer is his inability to execute the idea both as a story and screenplay. The story had an inherent flaw of being completely abstract and the screenplay pulls down the movie further. The 147 min movie is extremely slow and does not pick up at all; being a thriller this is the biggest flaw. Secondly the audience keeps on expecting some twist but every time it disappoints and the climax completely falls flat. The movie fails in the genre that it belonged, a thriller.
The dialogues again written by Vikramjit and Hussain Dalal is good in some sequences and it does not makes any sense in some and sounds too preachy and completely out of sync.
Performance wise Arjun Rampal as Kabir does complete justice and his earnestness shows. Ranbir Kapoor looks extremely out of sync and completely disinterested in his portrayal of the thief Roy, in some sequences he looks visibly uncomfortable. I think this is one of the weakest performances of Ranbir Kapoor after Besharam, it was sad to see Ranbir not being upto the mark. The bright spot of the movie is Jacqueline Fernandez’s portrayal of both Ayesha as well as Tia. She looked extremely glamorous and shows a huge improvement as a performer. Shernaz Patel, Rajit Kapoor & Anupam Kher are wasted completely in insignificant roles and cameos. Rest of the cast hardly has anything to contribute.
Himman Dhamija’s cinematography is so mesmerizing and he has captured Malaysia so well that you would plan your next vacation at Malaysia. The next strong point of the movie is its music by Amaal Mallik, Meet Bros & Ankit Tiwari. The music is melodious and has been beautifully choreographed by Ahmed Khan.
As a film maker Vikramjit Singh presents the movie with enough gloss & glamour and style, but unfortunately only these elements do not make a Good movie. As a debut film Vikramjit had a fabulous cast and equally good technical team. Even Vikramjit’s overall concept was also fresh and new for Bollywood but he completely wastes this opportunity with a weak story and an extremely slow paced screenplay. I will go with 2 stars…
Shamitabh: A good concept but an average execution stops it from becoming a classic
R Balki’s movie has been different in concept and content right from his first film “Cheeni Kum” and then “Paa”. Balki is also responsible for presenting Amitabh is various avatars and with “Shamitabh” he continues with his endeavor with a new concept and again presenting Amitabh in a different avatar.
Written by Balki the concept of the movie is unique and tells us the story of a dumb actor Danish (Dhanush) who wants to make it big in Bollywood but his handicap of being dumb fails him every time till he meets Akshara (Akshara Hasan) who is an AD and who sees a potential in Danish and helps him medically to solve his problem of speech but even after the surgery they still have an issue of a voice for Danish. After an extensive search they come across Amitabh Sinha (Amitabh Bachchan) who is convinced by Akshara to become the voice of Danish and hence the Star “Shamitabh” is born, what happens after Danish becomes Shamitabh forms the rest of the movie.
The concept is new but the screenplay fails to justify the unique concept as the pace becomes slow in parts and some of the sequences look too convenient to take the movie ahead like the sequence of how Akshara & Danish discover Amitabh which looks too clichéd. The good part of the script is that the all the three protagonists Danish, Akshara & Amitabh are etched out well and some sequences especially between Dhanush and Amitabh Bachchan are the highlight of the movie. The main highlight of the script is the chemistry between the two protagonist Danish & Amitabh. The main flaw is the climax which looked quite hurried and the movie ends abruptly keeping many questions unanswered. Another flaw is that some sequences are stretched unnecessarily slowing the pace.
The performances are the highlight of the movie and makes it watchable. Amitabh Bachchan as Amitabh Sinha is good and it showed on screen that he enjoyed playing the role. Dhanush as the dumb actor Danish excels and rises above the script in his portrayal. The chemistry of Dhanush and Amitabh Bachchan is the highlight of the movie. Debutant Akshara Hasan is impressive but she needs to work on her diction and dialogue delivery. Rest of the cast is impressive.
P C Sreeram as usual is top notch. Music by Illaiyaraja sounds fresh though most of the songs are situational.
Balki with such a brilliant idea could have done wonders but he falls short in executing the idea on the silver screen. Rather at the end it seemed that Balki was confused on how to end the movie and it showed. I will go with 3 stars…