Movie Review - Badmaash Company

By: Amit R Agarwal

The first thing that strikes me as I watch Badmaash Company unfold is – is the tom-foolery and stupidity that the critics derided just last week in Housefull bad at all?

For while an inane and a stupid film can get away with anything – a drama or a con film needs the audiences to identify with the protagonist; which is precisely the undoing of Badmaash Company. The first half of the film works owing to comic-track; but once the gags are done and the film gets into the drama mould (conflict) the film looses any grip whatsoever it had on the audiences. So much so that we have a botched up climax with Michael Jackson – oh the film starts in the good old days of yore, nineteen ninety-four –agreeing to endorse the ‘flawed-shirt’ marketed by the protagonist.

I guess, I read a report where actor turned debutant director Parmeet Sethi said he had completed the entire script, with dialogues, in six days; I have just one advice for him; next time spend 60 more days thinking about more plot movements, character-motivations and convincing resolutions!

BADMAASH COMPANY is set in 1994, when Mumbai was Bombay. When the economy was not yet liberalized and the cable TV was on the verge of making an entry into Indian homes.

A fixer hires a trio (Shahid Kapoor, Vir Das and Chang) to work as a ‘carrier’ for him; travel to Bangkok and get him goods to be sold at his custom-goods shop.

In the aircraft they meet another youngster (Anushka Sharma) who like most good-looking Indian girls nurses an ambition to be a model.

The first deal goes well and Shahid who wants to be very big gets an idea to import goods and con the government.

This sums up the first-half which is pretty decent.

The same can’t be said of the second half, which seems to be a copy and paste job as far as writing is concerned, only the setting is changed to US and instead of shoes the product is gloves.

Frankly speaking it is not the direction, but the writing skills of Parmeet that lets him down. The style is archaic and clichéd. A principled father; can’t a father be as conniving and as scheming as his son! Casting couch proposal to Anushka’s character in the film is another clichéd moment. In fact, just a few minutes before that Anushka tells Shahid as she smooches him – it is all casual.

Why can’t the writer create even a single moment in the film where you feel that the protagonists have moved from a casual to a more concrete grounded relationship?

Lastly, why do film-makers need to stuff gaudy pillows to make the heroine look pregnant? The first few months a girl can look normal and be pregnant, just as in real life.
Of the actors Shahid kapur, Anupam Kher, Kiran Jumeja and Pawan Malhotra – all look repetitive and break no new grounds in terms of acting.

What rocks the movie:

- A few genuinely funny moments in 1st half.
- Anushka Sharma, forget acting, she looks gorgeous and has the screen presence and charm to be the next big bollywood thing!
- Vir Das, he is effortless and looks very much the part.
- Production values, well well well, it’s a Yashraj production.

What chucks the movie:

- Writing
- Music, there is not even a single track that you can hum back home.


Badmaash Company is definitely better than the 95% stuff churned out of Bollywood in the name of films, but audiences expect much more out of a Yashraj film.