Sometimes filmmakers incorporate humour in films which deal with serious issues. While quite a few directors like Rajkumar Hirani have excelled at doing this, there are some who have failed at their attempt at making a satire. ‘Bangistan’, which deals with the issue of global terrorism, marks former film critic Karan Anshuman’s debut as a director. The film, as evident from the trailer, has dollops of humour even as it deals with a serious issue like religious extremism.
Bangistan is a country in which is divided into two parts – North Bangistan and South Bangistan. While the northern part of the country is occupied by Muslims, the Southern part is home to the Hindus. The country has no dearth no people who propagate hate in the name of religion. Hafeez (Riteish Deshmukh), is a part of an extremist Muslim group and Praveen Chaturvedi (Pulkit Samrat) follows a radical Hindu group, both of which ask them to go to a religious convention in Poland. Each of them is asked to arm himself with bombs and create havoc as they believe violence is the only way in which they would be able to prove the superiority of their respective religions. While Hafeez dresses up as a Hindu, Praveen dons the garb of a Muslim and both off them set off to Poland to accomplish their similar missions.
Two aspiring terrorists, aping the traits of each other religion – it would have made for a very interesting premise. Unfortunately, director Karan Anshuman approaches the issue in an over-simplistic manner. The film rests on a shoddily written screenplay and fails to convey the message well. The humour does not work at all. One does not understand as to why Karan decided to set the film in a fictitious country. It does not seem to serve any purpose at all. There is a sequence in which Jacqueline Fernandez talks about her parents staying away from her and the next moment the men decide to break into a dance to cheer her up. The film is full of several bizarre moments which would make you roll your eyes in disbelief.
Riteish Deshmukh tries his best to breathe life into a badly written character. Pulkit Samrat’s performance is average at best. Jacqueline Fernandez appears in a cameo and does well in the dance numbers. Kumud Mishra is funny in both the roles he plays. Chandan Roy Sanyal does not have much to do but makes an impact with his performance. Aarya Babbar, too, has a miniscule role and irritates with his loud performance.
Karan Anshuman fails to impress with his debut outing. His direction is poor. The screenplay (Puneet Krishna, Sumit Purohit and Karan Anshuman) is dull. Szymon Lenkowski’s camerawork is decent. Music (Ram Sampath) is good. The background score (Ram Sampath) is effective as well. Shweta Vankat’s editing is fair.
Bangistan is a major disappointment as it neither offers laughs nor does it succeed in conveying the intended message effectively. The film trivializes a very serious issue and fails to move. ‘Bangistan’, is easily, one of the worst films to have arrived this year.