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BANJO - Why we keep going back to the same old subjects and then expect them to be a success taking the viewers as granted? (Review By Bobby Sing)
23 Sep, 2016 | Movie Reviews / 2016 Releases / Inspired Movies (Alphabetical) / B

What can be said about a film which is all about musicians and music makers but still doesn’t offer any great memorable song except a decent Ganapati track coming up in its predictable climax. Putting it differently, how is one supposed to enjoy or appreciate a film titled BANJO, when it doesn’t even have any catchy musical piece (or theme music) played on its particular highlighted instrument that stays in your mind for long, like the one played in KARMA released three decades back.
Revolving around the street musicians known for their local Banjo Band active during the Navaratras and other state festivals in Maharashtra, the film begins with an intro of the key members of a group led by Ritesh Deshmukh. And this introduction is conceived in an interesting, engaging manner depicting the daily life in slums using Vjiay Raaz’s voiceover.
However post this impressive start, the first 40 minutes can be best described as a colourful Chitrahaar featuring all average songs (without any story as such) and then the next 90 minutes offer nothing new in the name of content or plot, straight away reminding you of ABCD series and the earlier ROCK ON moving on the similar path. So it’s yet again the same old stuff presented along an unconvincing sub-plot of an ‘attempted murder’ and some dazzling, grand visuals of Mumbai’s colourful festival.
In other words, the writing as usual turns out to be the major culprit here heavily relying on everything strictly routine, also full of confusions and contradictions in its main characterization. For instance, Ritesh is more than once shown as soaked in filthy gutter water for no reason whatsoever and one never gets to know who Nargis Farkhri actually is - a singer, composer, producer, a DJ, an entertainment company’s representative or what, coming from abroad in search of the local band? The same goes for the cunning and lusty character given to Mohan Kapur. But becoming the most hilarious feature of BANJO, the one international music competition/festival its supposedly all about, never actually happens in its 137 minutes of duration and the film ends without even mentioning it, probably because the writer-director wished to quickly finish it off avoiding any such ‘unnecessary details’.
As the directorial debut of Ravi Jadhav, the man behind much appreciated Marathi films such as NATARANG, BALAK-PALAK and TIMEPASS, this is nowhere close to any of the gems Ravi is known for. And the sole responsibility of this lies in his uninventive choice of subject, which could have only worked if made on some kind of extraordinary script supported by an outstanding soundtrack like SAIRAAT. No doubt his directorial experience and talent is visible more than once in the film in the depiction of slums, Ganapati celebrations and the climax song. But with such a weak, predictable, confused or ‘seen before’ writing and execution, it doesn’t really seem to be a film directed by the same person.
Frankly the biggest mistake in this attempt has to be the casting of Nargis Fakhri, who doesn’t look like acting for even once and keeps rendering her dialogues with just a single face expression throughout. In fact the girl has never been able to deliver even 10% of what she displayed in ROCKSTAR in all her later ventures. And this one major miscast truly hampers this specific film quite drastically.
On the other hand, the versatile Ritesh Deshmukh once again gets betrayed by his writers, music composers and the director too unfortunately. Ritesh makes a sincere effort along with Dharmesh Yelande (known for his dancing skills), Aditya Kumar (the perpendicular of GANGS OF WASSEYPUR 2) and the fourth friend. But together they are unable to deliver anything worth appreciating in the film due to its lazy and repetitive writing making a zero impact. The same can be said for the entire supporting cast including Luke Kenny as the only helping hand of Nargis in India.
Moving over the performances, the dialogues are fine as per the theme and cinematography strikingly portrays the life in slums as well as the colourful grandeur of Ganapati festival as required. However both the background score and editing remain just average.
In all, in this musical film called BANJO, there is neither any music nor any fresh storyline or execution to justify its chosen title. So just play some good music on your audio system instead and leave this BANJO alone, may be to be tried later when aired on a channel soon.
Rating : 1.5 / 5

(Note : The Indian style Banjo is also called Bulbul Tarang)

Tags : Banjo Review by Bobby Sing, Banjo Film Review by Bobby Sing, Banjo Movie Review at BTC, Inspired Films, New Hindi Films Reviews, New Hindi Movies Reviews, New Hindi Movies Released, New Bollywood Reviews, Bobby Talks Cinema Review, Reviews By Bobby Sing, New Hindi Films Reviews at bobbytalkscinema.com, Inspired Films.
23 Sep 2016 / Comment ( 0 )
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