Producers: Krishika Lulla, Vashu Bhagnani
Director: Ravi Jadhav
Cast: Riteish Deshmukh, Nargis Fakhri, Dharmesh Yelande, Ram Menon, Aditya Kumar, Luke Kenny, Mohan Kapoor
Story- Taraat (Riteish Deshmukh) is a local banjo player, lives in the Dharavi Slum. Taraat runs a local banjo band with his team- Grease (Dharmesh Yelande), Paper (Aditya Kumar), and Vaaja (Ram Menon). His band performs at Ganpati pandals. DJ Christina (Nargis Fakhri) comes from New York to Mumbai, to hunt the right music for participating in the music championship. She meets with Taraat and his friends. She likes Taraat’s expertise in banjo playing. Here, Taraat’s musical journey starts to gain fame, success, and money with the help of Christina. He faces such obstacles while achieving his goal. What are they? Will his talent recognize on the international level? Will Taraat and Christina win that music championship? To know answers, you have to watch ‘Banjo!’
Critic’s conclusion- Ravi Jadhav, a popular Marathi director, has directed several notable Marathi movies such as Baalak Paalak, Natrang, Balgandharva, etc. He is making debut in Bollywood via Banjo. His attempt to show Mumbai’s local hidden talent is praise-worthy. There are few Hindi movies, which show the lifestyle of citizen living in Mumbai Slums. Banjo is the one of them, which shows the real sprit of Mumbai.
However, the director has chosen the weak story. It is a typical Bollywood movie which gives nothing new to the audience. It is the same story of an economically challenged but extremely talented guy, and his journey towards his victory. The director has shown the Marathi flavor and attitude very well in the movie.
The first half sets characters, while the second half is slow. The narrative is unimpressive. There are few comic scenes, which make you laugh. The romantic angle between Taraat and Christina is looking forced in the movie. In the second half, the main story loses somewhere. It shows unnecessary sub-plots. Some scenes have inspired from ‘Rock On’ and ‘ABCD 2’ respectively.
The movie goes in the predictable manner. It becomes boring after the second half. Also, the abrupt climax is another disappointed aspect of the movie.
As for performances, Riteish Deshmukh is honest and perfect as Taraat. He has impressed once again with his performance, after ‘Ek Villain.’ Our filmmakers should offer him experimental roles frequently. Nargis Fakhri is decent, but she can’t emote well. Dharmesh Yelande, Ram Menon, and Aditya Kumar are awesome. The rest of the cast is helps to take the movie forward.
The Music is the soul of this movie. The songs are good and nicely shot. The cinematography is good. The editing is average. Dialogues are effective in such places.
Overall, Banjo could be an entertaining movie on street music players, if it had fully focused on the main story. It is a one-time watch movie.