Cast: Abhishek Bachchan, Sohum Shah, Ileana D'Cruz, Nikita Dutta, Ram Kapoor, Saurabh Shukla, Samir Soni and Supriya Pathak
Director: Kookie Gulati
Platform: Disney+ Hotstar
We have seen Gafla (2006) and the web series Scam 1992 (2020), in which filmmakers have presented the real story of Harshad Shantilal Mehta, an Indian stockbroker who exposed the loopholes in the Indian banking system and the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) transaction system. Consequently, after his biggest scam, the SEBI introduced new rules to cover those loopholes. His controversial life became an inspiration for Hansal Mehta, who directed one of the most highly praised web series Scam 1992.
Now, finally, Kookie Gulati's The Big Bull is also streaming on Disney+ Hotstar in which Abhishek Bachchan is donning the fictional character of Harshad Mehta. With this, let's have a look at whether watching The Big Bull is worthy or not.
The film is about the rise and the fall of The Big Bull 'Hemant Shah' (Abhishek Bachchan), who does a simple job and becomes an overnight stockbroker. With time, people start calling him Amitabh Bachchan of the stock market. The Big Bull story begins in 2020 where journalist Meera Rao (Ileana D'Cruz) is launching her book and narrating the story of Hemant Shah, a commoner who lived in a Chawl with big dreams. He fell in love with a girl Priya (Nikita Dutta) but her father had several conditions and Hemant had to fulfill all the conditions if he wished to get married to his daughter.
To get success in a short period, Hemant started investing in the share market and became a broker after analyzing the share market tricks. Hemant took advantage of the shortcomings of the Indian banking system, he used banks' money to invest in the stock market and became a middleman, and put the profit in his pocket.
While it is illegal for banks to invest money in the stock market, Hemant involved the banks in his plan. But in the end, the piercing brother of the house (Soham Shah) became a victim of the weak confidence and cunning of politicians. In the film, Hemant repeatedly boasted about having a trump card that he will save for the major crisis. With this little suspense, the film tells the address of this ace at Seven Racecourse Road (the residence of the then Prime Minister). Well, we have already seen in Hansal Mehta's Scam 1992 and The Big Bull has its own aura but with huge loopholes, which lacks its strength.
More on the Kookie Gulati's direction that we know him from directing the vague film, Prince. Well, we just remember Atif Aslam's unforgettable song Tere Liye from that highly forgettable film. Coming back to The Big Bull, then Kookie's direction wasn't sharp enough for this scam saga and he loses the plot grip at several points. Although, he tried to present the heavy-weight story of Hemant Shah in two and a half hours.
Vishnu Rao's cinematography is average and we can't say that it rises high on the expectations. Dharmendra Sharma's editing lacks its beauty and stretches the story somewhere. The editing job was similar to the banking system's loopholes, which inspired Hemant Shah to become the 'The Big Bull'. The editing could have been done in a better way to add some crispy elements to the story. Though it was a difficult job all thanks to this not-so-great screenplay and looked fake just like the 'Bank Receipts' of Hemant Shah.
Adorned with excellent actors, this film does justice to all the characters. Abhishek Bachchan has played the character of Hemant Shah perfectly on screen. However, even before this, Abhishek has proved his ability through many films, but being the son of megastar Amitabh Bachchan, the audience's expectation has always been higher from him. In the role of Hemant Shah's mother, Supriya Pathak has been able to pull you by her acting. Ileana D'Cruz as Meera Rao has done justice with her role. Whereas Sohum Shah as Viren Shah looks marvelous on the screen and perfectly donned the complications of his character. His expressions fit best on his character plus he looks best alongside Abhishek Bachchan. Time and again Sohum Shah has proved his mettle in the industry and has always given his best for any given character.
More on the rest of the star cast, Ram Kapoor as lawyer Ashok Mirchandani and Saurabh Shukla as Mannu Malpani, Chairman, Bombay Stock Exchange are the strength of the film. Nikita Dutta as Priya Patel Shah also adores her screen presence alongside Abhishek Bachchan. We have to say that the star cast performance in the film is its brawn.
All-embracing, The Big Bull is a one-time watch and if you want to watch Abhishek Bachchan in his Guru mode then we will highly recommend this not so gripping flick. Whereas if we compare this film with Hansal Mehta's Scam 1992, then it nearly stands anywhere with the perfect writing of Pratik Gandhi starrer. Although both are based on Harshad Mehta's chronicle scam saga, Hansal Mehta takes the advantage of presenting the stockbroker story in the 10 episode series whereas Kookie seems juggling with the short duration period. Overall, the star cast performance in the film is exceptional and is the core strength of the film. With three stars, we can suggest you watch this film but don't expect it to be Hansal Mehta's Scam 1992.