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Monday, December 4, 2023

Baazaar Movie Review: Raises The Stakes for Financial Crime Thrillers in Bollywood

Baazaar is based on stock market scam and corruption.

The movie revolves around aspirations and the extent one would go to pursue their dreams.

In the movie, Saif Ali Khan plays the role of Shakun Kothari as a ruthless businessman whose world revolves around money and power.

The film is directed by Gauravv K. Chawla, written by Nikkhil Advani, Aseem Arora and Parveez Sheikh.

It also stars debutante Rohan Mehra, Chitrangda Singh and Radhika Apte.

Filme Shilmy reviews this financial crime thriller.

Baazaar’s eye-opening representation of the stock market in India

Whilst there a few financial crime thrillers like Raid and Special 26, not many Bollywood films focus around the stock market.

Baazaar offers an eye-opening exposure on the stock market in India. It is made in a stylish and slick way.

The story and concept are relevant to the financial crimes and scams that have happened of recent in India.

As a result, the narrative shocks the audience. There are so many unexpected points in the film’s storyline.

Finance is a major subject in the film. But more than that, the movie provides quite an accurate insight into the world of the highly powerful and affluent.

To see how big negotiations and the type of politics played behind-closed-doors is frightening.

Fortunately, the film does not seem like a lecture on the stock market and finance. That aspect is like a coating.

The main focus is on the ambitions, dreams & morality of the characters.

Narrative Style & Brilliant Performances

One loves the narrative style.

When an important part in the narrative occurs, Rizwan (Rohan Mehra) and Shakun (Saif Ali Khan), the main characters, speak to the audience whilst everyone and everything around him freezes.

Such tropes enhance the cinematic appeal of the film. 

Plus, the good thing is that the movie does not drag at any point and moves at a good pace.

More than the narrative style, performances of the main cast are superlative.

Initially, it seems like there is one positive male character, whilst the other is negative. 

However, after seeing the film, pretty much every character exude shades of grey.

Saif Ali Khan is ruthless as Shakun Kothari.

We can see the power not only through his dialogue delivery but also via his body language and expressions.

Plus, he totally nails the Gujarati accent and avoids making it into a caricature. Undoubtedly, this ranks amongst his best performances.

Rohan Mehra makes a very confident debut with Baazaar.

We see innocence through his eyes, yet his acting and dialogue delivery is solid.

He has great potential to make it big in Bollywood… Mark our words!

The female characters are well-written into the narrative.

Radhika Apte enacts her part well as Priya Rai.

It initially seems like Radhika does not have much to do and appears as a mere love interest of Rohan Mehra. Though, there’s a lot more to her role.

Chitrangda Singh has a strong screen presence.

Playing Shakun’s devoted wife, Chitrangda possesses the pristine girl-next-door qualities but is still aware of her surroundings. She is impressive too.

What’s Wrong?

Nothing too major. Though the story could’ve shown a bit more struggle of Rizwan’s character. 

For instance, he is an ambitious guy from Allahabad who seeks to live the high life in Mumbai. 

Consequently, he seems to get into the stock market/trading a bit too conveniently and dramatically.

This track could’ve been developed more, as it is important for the audience to observe and acknowledge his struggle.

Perhaps a more realistic approach towards this angle could have worked much better.

Also, some of the love songs could’ve been done away with.

Bearing in mind that the film runs for two hours and twenty minutes, lesser songs could have saved time.

Final Word

On the whole, Baazaar is refreshing for Bollywood. It is thrilling, suspenseful and yet socially relevant.

Those who are not au fait about business can easily understand & relate with the movie.

A highly recommended watch!

⭐️⭐️⭐️.5 (3.5/5 stars)

Anuj Radia
Journalist and film enthusiast.

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