Plot: Four friends – Shahid, Anushka, Vir and Meiyang – start a business to make quick money by unfair means. Shahid and Anushka also fall in love with one another. Their partnership and friendship break when Shahid becomes haughty. Anushka also leaves him.
What’s Good: Performance of Shahid Kapoor, the fresh anecdotes, the youthful dialogues, the hit music.
What’s Bad: The first part of the post-interval portion.
Verdict: Badmaash Company will see the production company making profits. Earning proposition.
Loo break: The scenes in which the friends fight. You won’t miss anything if you visit the loo.
Yash Raj Films’ Badmaash Company (UA) is about four friends who want to make quick money. Karan (Shahid Kapoor), Bulbul (Anushka Sharma), Chandu (Vir Das) and Zing (Meiyang Chang) forge a partnership and start a business. The brain behind the new business is Karan. He comes up with a plan of importing branded shoes and making money by cheating the customs department of the 120% customs duty levied on them. Their business flourishes till one day, the duty on branded shoes is slashed by the government to 20%
With no future in their business, Karan hits upon the idea to move to America and use the same ploy to import stuff there and defraud the customs authorities in that country. One after another, he comes up with new plans to make quick money and the foursome share in the ever-increasing profits. Karan and Bulbul have, in the meantime, fallen in love with one another. Soon, Karan becomes too big for his boots and the company falls apart. Zing, Chandu and Bulbul leave him when they realise, he has changed. Their reasons for snapping ties with him are different.
Soon, law catches up with Karan and he is jailed. His three ex-partners come to his rescue to have his jail term reduced but they still keep their distance from him. Karan, who had left his parents’ home in India after a fight with his principled father (Anupam Kher), now only has his maternal uncle, Jazz (Pawan Malhotra), to fall back upon. Opportunity knocks on Karan’s door once again when Jazz uncle finds himself in a financial mess. But Karan realises he will once again need the help of Zing and Chandu. Will they join forces with him to earn money or will they reject his proposal? Where is Bulbul? Has she moved on in life or is she waiting for Karan to reform his ways? And what about Karan’s father? Will he forgive his son? Answers to these questions are provided as the drama progresses.
Parmeet Sethi’s story is fresh and even the anecdotes in the first half are quite new, youthful and entertaining. The language used by the four friends, their attitude, their behaviour are all so typical of the youngsters today that the school-and college-going youth will take an instant liking to the foursome. In other words, Parmeet Sethi’s screenplay in the pre-interval part is enjoyable. However, it must be said that the drama could’ve been more energetic and a bit more fast-paced. This is true not only of the first half but also of the post-interval portion.
The screenplay takes a dip after interval, especially when cracks start developing in the friendship of the four friends. For one, the misunderstandings between the friends and the arrogance of Karan don’t ring very true if only because things are not too well-established. Also, the break-up of Karan and Bulbul looks like a repetition of what one has seen in the recently-released Main Aurr Mrs. Khanna.
Luckily for the film, writer Parmeet Sethi manages to get the drama back on track once Karan takes it upon himself to help Jazz uncle tide over his financial loss. The argument of the same shirt changing colours after every wash and, therefore, appealing to the public may be too far-fetched but it does bring a smile on the audience’s faces. Therefore, although the climax does not have the usual excitement and/or melodrama, it does have freshness to compensate.
All said, the plus points of the script are that it has fresh incidents, a youthful feel and the universal yearning of youngsters – to get rich quick. Also, the tricks adopted by Karan andhis company to hoodwink the authorities are intelligent, keeping the viewers constantly involved and engrossed in the proceedings to understand what the ploy is. On the minus side are the lack of romance in spite of Karan and Bulbul being two youngsters in love and likewise, Chandu and Zing being skirt-chasers.
The track of Karan’s parents lends the film the emotional appeal although it could’ve been more pronounced. The scene in which Karan has a fight with his father before he leaves home and the one in which his mother understands that it is Karan’s telephone call to her even though he doesn’t speak a word on the phone do moisten the eyes.
Parmeet Sethi’s dialogues are natural and match the mood of the film.
Shahid Kapoor lives his role. He acts wonderfully and does the fullest justice to his character. His expressions, his body language, his acting and even the smallest of his nuances – all suggest that he has slipped into the character of Karan. His transition and his journey show what a fine actor he is evolving into. Anushka Sharma acts well and also looks good in a glamorous get-up. But she could do with a little more zing. Vir Das is endearing in his debut role and is easy in front of the camera. Newcomer Meiyang Chang is very cute and he, too, is camera-friendly. Anupam Kher does a superb job. Kiran Juneja is very effective. Pawan Malhotra stays true to his character. Jameel Khan leaves a mark.
Parmeet Sethi’s direction is very good. The film does not look like a first-time attempt of a director. Sethi is a welcome addition to the list of directors. Music (Pritam) is youth-centric and will be loved by youngsters. ‘Aiyyashi’ and ‘Chaska’ are hit numbers. ‘Jingle jingle’ is also fast-paced and, coupled with the first-two-named songs, goes well with the mood of the film. Their picturisations (Ahmed Khan) are good. ‘Fakeera’ is another appealing song. The title track is quite nice. Sanjay Kapoor’s photography is excellent. The foreign locations are beautiful. Ritesh Soni’s editing is sharp. Production values are very nice. Technically, of a good standard.
On the whole, Badmaash Company is an entertainer. Given its
limited budget (around Rs. 27 crore including promotion and prints), it will definitely see the producers (who are also the all-world distributors) smiling all the way to the bank.