A so-so marriage of gangsters & romance
50%Overall Score

Verdict: Bamfaad makes for a decent one-time watch if you are in a mood for something intense.

Available on Zee 5.

Presented by Anurag Kashyap and directed by Ranjan Chandel, Bamfaad is a Zee 5 original. Bamfaad marks the debut of Aditya Rawal, son of the legendary actor Paresh Rawal. It also stars apna chhatriwala Bunty aka Jatin Sarna, Vijay Varma and Shalini Pandey in the female lead role.

What’s Bamfaad About:

Bamfaad is one part gangster, one part romance and one part super performances. Nasir Jamaal aka Naate (Aditya Rawal) is the son of a politician, who lives in Allahabad. Naate is an intense guy who loves and hates passionately. One on hand, he strives for his friends to be happy and on the other, he doesn’t hesitate to stand up to the local gangster Jigar Fareedi (Vijay Varma). He falls in love with Neelam (Shalini Pandey) who eventually starts liking him too. Both brave their way through a million odds to be with each other.

What Works:

The setting of the film is intense and rustic, quite Kashyap-esue. Complete with twisted politics, powerplay and betrayal, along with strong characters, Bamfaad is reminiscent of Gangs of Wasseypur…well, almost. While the plot and the characters are interesting, the film is stuck in mediocrity and never really blooms into a masterpiece, mostly due to a loose narrative. The cast gets their Allahabad bang on. Aditya Rawal is terribly impressive in his debut, right down to his diction and body language. His version of the “angry young man” is stunning and powerful. Shalini Pandey’s damsel-in-distress Neelam is as nuanced as she is enigmatic. Vijay Varma embodies the spirit of a small-town gangster as Jigar Fareedi. He makes for a formidable antagonist to Rawal’s Naate. Jatin Sarna plays the role of Zahid and he plays this shady character to the tee. The film’s dialogues are strong but do not have a single shade of humor, which is rather taxing.

What Could’ve Been Better:

Without a proper thread of narration running throughout the film, Bamfaad loses steam with too many subplots and a fragmented narrative. It never really grips you and tries unsuccessfully to marry gangster and romance. The songs are mediocre and dilute the intensity of the film and take away the edge somehow. With a few forced situations and dialogues, what we get is a tepid love story mixed awkwardly with underworld and politics. While Shalini’s performance is decent, her character is that of a stereotypical weak woman and nothing to write home about. The film ends on a rather predictable note.

Why You Should Watch:

Ranjan Chandel does a decent job at bringing us a gangster love story. The casting is perfect and the actors are easily the best part of this feature. If you are in a mood to watch a romance sprinkled with some tough-as-nails characters, Bamfaad makes for a decent one-time watch.