Ajay Devgn, Ileana D'Cruz, Emraan Hashmi, Esha Gupta, Vidyut Jammwal, Sanjay Mishra
With the union of some of the iconic names from their respective fields, it is quite obvious for the cine enthusiast to expect the advent of a magnum opus. But unfortunately many times this does not happen every time when some of the sinewy performers of their ilk come together. Yes, we are talking about the much-awaited cine flick of the year Baadshaho starting Ajay, Emraan, Ileana and Vidyut. Ever since the first trailer of the movie went public everyone started assuming that awesome duo Ajay and Milan Lutharia will once again recreate the OUTIM magic, but lamentably it did not happen. May because ace writer Rajat Arora's script betrayed the duo.
Embedded in the dark era of 1975 when the emergency was imposed, the premise of Baadshaho is set in the royal state of Rajasthan.
The narration of the movie starts taking shape when an amoral politician, Sanjeev (Priyanshu Chatterjee, whose character to a great extent resembles Sanjay Gandhi) has the royal family of Rajasthan in his crosshairs. And who becomes the soft target for this lamentable politico - Gitanjali Devi (Ileana D’cruz) the heiress of the royal family and her treasure trove.
But contrary to Sanjeev's belief Gitanjali is not as soft as the chiffon saris she wears or as delicate as her jewellery. Gitanjali Devi's ancestral wealth gets seized but this caged lioness decides to fight back and despite being behind four walls of jail she masterminds and manipulates to get her privy purse back.
Just like any other damsel in distress of Bollywood movies even she has a protector who has all his love strings attached to this princess. In Baadshaho it's Bhawani Singh (Ajay Devgn) who has sworn lifelong loyalty to the royal house. And just like any other love-ridden chaperone on the behest of Gitanjali, Bhawani cobbles together a team to pull off a heist and return the lost bounty to his muse.
To execute his master Bhawani unites with Guruji (Sanjay Mishra); a drunk who is also a highly skilled lock picker, Daliya (Emraan Hashmi), who is a fast talker with poor dressing sense, but a vast knowledge of the terrain.
And yeah I forgot to mention there is this Gitanjali’s sidekick also i.e. Sanjana (Esha Gupta) whom I guess was roped in the movie to promote bell-bottoms and fitted blouses.
Now the aim of this bunch of bad-ass Trojans is to seize the armoured vehicle from the army which is under the escort of officer Seher Singh (Vidyut Jammwal). So does Bhawani's gang of rowdies succeed in their plan, or is it Seher who has the last laugh to know watch (or take your own call) Baadshaho.
There is no denying the fact, that Rajat Arora is one such wordsmith who has proved his mettle numerous times with movies like Once Upon A Time In Mumbaai, The Dirty Picture, Once Upon Ay Time in Mumbai Doobara! Kick, Gabbar Is Back. But this time this ace scribe fumbled with the idea and ended up creating something which looked slightly amateurish and inaptly cooked.
The screenplay of Baadshaho is unduly nonlinear and includes a couple of 'on the edge of the seat' moments which keep you engrossed on the screen, for example, the one towards the climax where Baadshaho's finale unfolds in a sandstorm.
As far as performances are concerned then as usual Ajay deserves the biggest slice of appreciation for his outstanding performance. Besides his usual screen presence, it’s also his attention grabbing one liner, which forms the highlight of the film. Frankly speaking, Ajay Devgn is the only reason to watch the Baadshaho. Besides, Ajay, it's Mishra who deserves a second lot of brownie points. Emraan too manages to register his onscreen presence with the Rajasthani accent. Ileana who was last seen in Mubarkan looks convincing as Gitanjali Devi. Despite struggling in their performances Vidyut, Esha et al are strictly OK.
To sum up, Baadshaho had many such elements including sinewy star cast, a good cine idea, and an ace director to steer this cine chronicle towards excellence, but unfortunately, it's the amateurish script which ditched everyone sailing in this vessel. So I am giving two out of five for this poorly concocted regalia.