wogma rating: Add to that never-watched 'To Watch' list (?)

quick review:

A sincere attempt to be smart could have been appreciated, had it been a little less superficial in its approach to the business world.

Read more
Director: Gauravv K Chawla
Running time: 140 minutes
Genres: Thriller
More Movie Info

Baazaar - Preview

Saif Ali Khan as the heartless, suave businessman comes across as really cool. The new hero falls pale pitted against the powerful actor – the only thing going for him seems to be that he looks like he is on the ‘good’ side. This already looks like it is an uneven, one-sided match. So, how engaging Baazaar is will all depend on how well the back and forth between the two is written - in terms of the situations, the details and also the dialogue. For now though, it feels like the cut-throat attitude is only skin deep.

Baazaar releases on 26 October, 2018.

- meeta, a part of the audience

Business acumen is difficult to come by, for it demands a different kind of smart, the street-smart kind of smart, the non-idealistic kind of smart, and some more. To be able to make a movie about something like that, the writing has to capture that acumen while keeping it within the audience’s grasp. You can see Baazaar trying to strike that balance and ending up neither here nor there. Neither is the connivance explored to its full potential, nor is the audience intellectually stimulated enough.

The actors stay restrained and add immense value to what might have turned out to be a limp film.

A lot of it could be because Baazaar spends a disproportionate amount of time in setting up characters and relationships. Thankfully, it flows smoothly. But it also makes the first half a tad too slow. Once set up, the business maneuvers are not straightforward or over-simplistic but they are not smartly written either. While you want to more, the writing is not engaging enough for you to care too much if you don’t understand completely.

There might have been an underlying attack on the hypocrisy of a manipulative businessman, and community he belongs to and the religion he supposedly follows. Also the entire comparison between small-town vs. big-city mentality felt like it was used as a tool to bring about the contrast rather than an element integral to the story.

That leaves the actors to take over. The script doesn’t require any of them to do anything extraordinary. The actors could have gotten carried away though with the dramatic treatment they most likely knew the film would carry. They stay restrained and add immense value to what might have turned out to be a limp film.

In fact, it wouldn’t be unfair to say that as great as an effort as it might be to write a slick film set in the business world, were it not for the actors, there wouldn’t be any reason to watch the film.

- meeta, a part of the audience

30 reviewers(?) - 6 yays 14 so-so 10 nays

Warning: clicking on "full review" will take you to an external website that could contain spoilers.

Thumbs up, by Ankita Chaurasia, Bollywood Life : ...There's a certain joy in paying for the seats and sitting on its edge throughout the movie, for it is such a riveting affair. If you want to buy some thrills this weekend, head to this Baazaar.... full review

Thumbs up, by Devesh Sharma, Filmfare : ...The film is edited quite badly. It seems to be going all over the place. You somehow get the feeling that it would have worked better as a mini-series than a feature film. Wall Street made us aware that our choices make us good or evil and that you do get a choice to walk away from it all if you wish to. Baazaar tells us the same thing but so sloppily that we don't care for the lesson. The film’s ending hints at a sequel. We hope the execution gets better the next time around...... full review

Thumbs up, by R.M. Vijayakar, India West : ...This may not be a film for the masses, but the filmmakers and its cast and crew deserve to be proud of themselves. Hopefully, in an era where good commercial cinema makes decent money, so will this film.... full review

Thumbs up, by Umesh Punwani, koimoi : ...All said and done, Baazaar is one entertaining film laced with some superlative performances & refined direction. The concept of ‘make money’ will fantasize many but the movie has its own charm and style majorly because of ever-so-dashing Saif Ali Khan.... full review

Thumbs up, by Rachit Gupta, Times of India : ...Baazaar uses plenty of stock market jargon and showcases complex ideas like insider trading and financial manipulation with ease. It’s great to see an edgy story unfold in completely new settings in a Hindi film. The movie has a lot of hustle and power play from the world of industrialists, politicians and money brokers, and that makes for a smart investment, especially for movie buffs.... full review

Thumbs up, Zee News : ...While some of the other supporting performances just don't match up -- the ever-brilliant Manish Choudhary struggles in an underwritten role; Radhika Apte as Rizwan's go-getting colleague makes space for herself. In a way she tokenizes the film's morality. In today's times you have to push your way into attention.... full review

So-So, by Bobby Sing, Bobby Talks : ...In all BAAZAAR, competently directed by the debutant Gauravv K Chawla, has a very fine first half, an average second and an outdated climax, resulting in a fairly watchable above average urban venture lacking the mass appeal.... full review

So-So, Bollywood Hungama : ...On the whole, BAAZAAR has a brilliant first half but the unconvincing and convenient second half hampers the impact heavily. Moreover, the subject is such that only the multiplex audiences in the urban areas would find it appealing.... full review

So-So, by Hiren Kotwani, DNA : ...If powerplay and money matters interest you, watch Baazaar.... full review

So-So, by Johnson Thomas, Free Press Journal : ...Careful performances by Saif, Radhika, Rohan and Chitrangada lend some weight even though the film doesn’t quite rise up to the expectation of a striking morality humdinger!... full review

So-So, by Manjusha Radhakrishnan, Gulf News : ...The first half of the film moves at a decent pace, but the second half is riddled with a few fractured turns. Why did Kothari take the wide-eyed Ahmad under his wing and into his inner circle so swiftly? Why didn’t Ahmad see red when a shark-like Kothari was being uncharacteristically nice towards him? These are a few questions that will come up. While the thriller set against the concrete jungle of Mumbai isn’t particularly memorable, its lead player Kothari has a longer shelf-life. Watch this solely for Khan.... full review

So-So, by Anita Iyer, Khaleej Times : ...Baazaar is sharp, edgy and engulfs you into the big bad world of stock exchange trading. It will leave you thoroughly entertained.... full review

So-So, by UDITA JHUNJHUNWALA, Live Mint : ...In spite of obvious Hollywood influences and tropes of the financial thriller, Chawla constructs a largely engaging thriller (which doesn’t gain from the songs and dances) from Aseem Arora and Parveez Sheikh’s script which takes some convenient liberties with the plot.... full review

So-So, by Kunal Guha, Mumbai Mirror : ...Director Gauravv K Chawla is tuned in to the vital masalas that make for a Hindi blockbuster and uses the tropes to heighten the drama. While the tension he manages to conjure isn’t consistent, it often leave one in anticipation for the next scene. So if you’ve not watched the Hollywood version, this may interest and occasionally, even manage to entertain you.... full review

So-So, by Saibal Chatterjee, NDTV : ...Baazaar is at best passable. It could have yielded higher dividends had it been less slavishly derivative.... full review

So-So, by Rohit Vats, : ...To give credit where it’s due, Baazaar is still a ‘masala’ entertainer, provided you don’t ask for more than what’s offered.... full review

So-So, Outlook India : ...Overall, this stock market trading drama is not exactly thrilling, but manages to stay afloat owing to the credible performances. Given its setting only urban viewers will relate to it.... full review

So-So, by Sukanya Verma, Rediff : ...Save for Saif. His character has a thing for stories and tells them like riddles with deviousness stroked in affability. He is evil in its most hypnotic, powerful, persuasive, expressive and exonerated avatar -- now where have you heard of this kind before?... full review

So-So, by Nandini Ramnath, : ...As in all films of this type, the hunter is always more interesting than the prey, but Baazaar is too busy aiming for a cautionary tale to say something new and novel about risk-taking behaviour.... full review

So-So, by Rummana, yahoo! India : ...‘Baazaar’ builds up quite well with the key players belting out convincing performances, but it falters in the second half. The thrills wane and you are left with a tepid tale that fails to keep you consistently engaged. It feels too long and too indulgent as it delves deep into the world of stock trading. The net effect, thus, is neither bullish nor bearish.... full review

Thumbs down, by SUPARNA SHARMA, Deccan Chronicle : ...It’s this moral pussyfooting that makes what could have been an interesting study of evil a rather plodding, exhausting affair.... full review

Thumbs down, by Rahul Desai, Film Companion : ...Most fascinating is Saif Ali Khan’s Raees-meets-Rohit-from-Kal-Ho-Naa-Ho performance. His Hindi is typically Nawab-ish and, well, normal, and it’s only his English that is forcibly tinged with an accent more unnatural than Anushka Sharma’s in Jab Harry Met Sejal. Sentences are sprinkled with the odd ‘dhandho’ (business) and ‘ghanto’ (not “bell”), while he sips on whiskey and struts around with the air of a vegetarian Wolf of Dalal Street. He prides himself on profits and facts, and always being right about random metaphors.... full review

Thumbs down, by Anna MM Vertticad, FirstPost : ...Until then, those of us who respect his innate talent and charisma will be left continuously tearing our hair out wondering when he will find the next Farhan Akhtar, the next Kunal Kohli, the next Sriram Raghavan or the next Vishal Bhardwaj of his life. Baazaar ain't a patch on any of the above films, but it is not intolerable either. What it is is forgettable. Saif Ali Khan is the best thing about this ordinary film.... full review

Thumbs down, by Raja Sen, Hindustan Times : ...There are many problems with the mediocre Baazaar, but the primary issue is intent. It appears Chawla didn’t truly attempt to tell a story. He’s a director who tried Wolf.... full review

Thumbs down, by Samrudhi Ghosh, india today : ...Gauravv K Chawla's Baazaar starring Saif Ali Khan tries to be for Bollywood what The Wolf Of Wall Street is for Hollywood, but ends up falling drastically short.... full review

Thumbs down, by Suhani Singh, india today : ...It doesn't bode well that Baazaar ends with a factual inaccuracy. Taking the audience for ignorant is not a smart business move.... full review

Thumbs down, by Shubhra Gupta, indian express : ...Net worth of Baazaar: an interesting bunch of actors in an uninteresting, uninvolving film.... full review

Thumbs down, by Mayank Shekhar, MiD DAY : ...And I think most of this picture actually comes from an inherent perception of what a Hindi film should be - hero-villain, dialoguebaazi, twist - while that is continuously being challenged so often by audiences, it seems unlikely that one would go in for an approach so simplistic, on a subject so urban-multiplex, assuming that people won't get it otherwise? If you can get over the juvenilia, this jukebox will do you just fine.... full review

Thumbs down, by Manisha Lakhe, Now : ...A young small town ambitious lad reaches Bombay with just one goal. To be noticed by and work with Shakun Kothari. And he rises to such instant money and fame that it takes one move by the master to bring the apprentice down. Or does he? This beautifully produced film falls flat on its face because it has very little substance. So many films to be inspired from - Wall Street to The Big Short and even Margin Call - and the story is like Gaflat Bollywood's first attempt to make a film on the Stock... full review

Thumbs down, by Namrata Joshi, The Hindu : ...The only thing noteworthy about Rohan Mehra are his dimples. Khan sports a neat streak of grey hair which keeps coming and going, much like his Gujarati accent. His clipped English/Hindi overrides it most times. Moreover he is unbendingly stiff, stern and deadpan to communicate a rather facetious sense of menace. In the gender-insensitive (also homophobic) world, the women are marginalised in the most cringing manner possible.... full review

Twitter reviews for this movie are not available.

3 readers - 2 yays 0 so-so 1 nays

Yay! Thumbs Up, by Black Mass : fantastic way of story telling

Yay! Thumbs Up, by bollywood blastz : my review for this movie is on website do watch

Nay! Thumbs Down, by Fan

This page has additional observations, other than the ones noted in the main review.

Parental Guidance:

  • Violence: A suicide.
  • Language: Clean
  • Nudity & Sexual content: Kissing and making out scenes, prostitution alluded to too.
  • Concept: A hardened businessman meets a not-so-idealistic amateur
  • General Look and Feel: The serious world of business in Mumbai

Detailed Ratings (out of 5):

Lead Actors:
Character Artists:
Music Director:

Baazaar - Cast, crew, links

Music Director:
Running time:
140 minutes

Comments (1)

Click here for new comment


This is one big let down, especially after the way it starts off which had promise.

The story used is a simple, unbelievable, rise from rags to riches in few weeks. Films with such miracle stories used to work till 1990s but no more. I expected a much more serious acumen from the layman admirer of the stock market Mughal to earn his stripes. That was sourly missing - a simple and stupid speculations see him turn from a middle town normal qualifications guy to an overnight Dalal Street wizkid. Those incidents lacked all sense of reality.

Similar dejection with the ending - all too simplistic approach and miracles happening everywhere.

As regards the games being played, everything was too predictable from the word go. Hindi films need to reinvent themselves as this type of film making with supposed twists and secrets are getting too obvious to figure out.

It is a pity because casting wise Saif does look like the ruthless businessman, even though his Gujarati accent was pathetic. He could have taken some diction lessons to get the correct accent. Chitraganda Singh looks gorgeous and acts reasonably well - pity that she does not do many films - she too needs diction lessons for Gujarati. The new kid on the block is absolutely forgettable.

This is one of those films that could have been super interesting to watch if the story was solid. Alas, that was not to be.

Leave a Comment