Banjo is Ravi Jadhav’s directorial debut in Hindi cinema. He has given some of the best Marathi films ever made in Marathi cinema. The list includes Natrang, Balak Palak, Balgandharva, Time Pass. With a heavy heart I have to say Banjo comes nowhere close to these film. After all a film is a film and language need not be a barrier. Ravi retains his direction style but somehow Banjo fails to connects with you.
Trailer of Banjo tells you almost everything about the film. There is nothing new in the film as far as story is concerned. Banjo is not unbearable, it do has some good things in it. Film has pretty good humor. Banjo has some really good moments in it that makes you feel nice about the film. But that itself is the major problem of the film. The good things in the film are in bits and pieces and the sad thing is that these bits and pieces aren’t enough to entertain you. Initial part of the film is loaded with songs, they do not seem forced just because they are good but could have been easily trimmed without even affecting the film. While watching the film you seem interested suddenly and within no time you feel indifferent. You just tend to watch whatever is going on screen just because you have bought the ticket. Most of the time you are lost and hardly into the film.
Riteish Deshmukh has given a very honest performance. You may not question about he being convincing in the character but his hard work has gone in vain. You barely feel something for his character making you not notice his performance at all. Nargis Fakhri hardly bothers about what is being said about the performance and so does the audience. Banjo is no different, still she manages to act in few scenes. The other members of Riteish’s band are just ordinary. The remaining cast of the film hardly matters. Ravi Jadhav’s direction may be his weakest work till date and that is all because of the story and screenplay of Banjo being not strong enough. This simple story could have been much better if executed well. At times you remember Rock On because of the treatment of the film.
Coming to those few good things in Banjo. Music of Vishal and Shekhar. As per the theme of the film the composer duo has done complete justice. The album is the saving grace of the film. But its an album, you need not watch the film for the same. Banjo is shot in the awfully beautiful part of Mumbai; slums. The way film is shot gives it a realistic feel and cinematography is noteworthy. The way film looks is the major reason for you being seated throughout the film.
Overall Banjo is confusing as to what exactly to say about the film. For sure there hardly going to be someone who will totally love the film, but some good things in it making it a forceful watch.