Movie Review : Banjo



Cast : Reitesh Deshmukh, Nargis Fakri, Dharmesh

Director : Ravi Jadhav

Rating :  3/5

Duration : 2 hours 18 minutes

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The movie is the Hindi directorial debut of talented Marathi filmmaker Ravi Jadhav of Timepass fame. He has joined hands with his trusted ally, Riteish Deshmukh for his Hindi venture.

The movie deals with a brand new topic that of street music and street musicians. It’s about crowded streets, roaming dogs, filthy bylanes, hopelessness and rearing spirits. Taraat (Riteish Deshmukh) the leader of the group of few Banjo players in Mumbai, catches the fancy of a budding American singer Chris (Nargis Fakhri). She travels to Mumbai all the way from New York to hunt for Taraat and his quirky coterie, hoping to take their music international.

Tarrat Bhai likes to sweep the Mumbai streets with his beloved even in a beautifully planned and executed dream song. After all, this is what he has seen.

Chris leads a privileged New York life. She has the luxury of opting music as a career, unlike Tarrat and the members of his Banjo team, who play on the streets of Mumbai for survival.

Tarrat comes out of the gutter in the introductory scene. He might be a motor-mouth, but helplessness is written all over his face. He can’t hide the fact that he extorts money for the local corporator, or he is a drunkard, or he has been a loser throughout his life.

But, he plays banjo at local Ganpati festivals and that’s a sight to behold. There, he is the master and the universe takes cues from his notes. One such performance has reached Chris and now she is in India to make music with his team. Other team members are Greece (Dharmesh Yelande), Paper (Aditya Kumar) and Vaaja (Leslie).

Banjo begins on a promising note and Manoj Lobo’s camera glides you through dirt, agony and compassion. Lobo’s filters may do the trick for people who can’t face harsh realities with bare eyes. Jadhav probably believes in serving ‘vada paav’ in a silver foil. You get introduced to key characters with some peppy numbers thrown in between. The canvas is spread, and the actors are ready to take the leap of faith. The constraints of commercial cinema kick in right here, and the film takes the safer route.

A good musical drama suddenly changes into an average formula tale of a hero with a golden heart, villains who can consider a sudden change of mind, heroine with a knack for dancing and stretched dialogues.

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