Badmaash Company poster

Badmaash Company

wogma rating: Add to 'must watch' list (?)

quick review:

It's everything that's fun about a conjob - the core idea, the wool-over-the-eyes, the joke at the victim's expense. Everyone gets their just desserts and surprisingly all ends well.

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Director: Parmeet Sethi
Running time: 120 minutes
Genres: Comedy, Crime
More Movie Info

Badmaash Company - Preview

NOT A REVIEW - Just fighting the skepticism…

The title Badmaa$h Company immediately pops an image of those films with 3-4, good-for-nothings getting together for some over-the-top, insane, illogical fun or some ridiculous, plot-less, illogical action - C Kkompany, Cash, Dhol, Bhagam Bhag, Golmaal, Golmaal Returns, Dhamaal, to name a few.

The $ in the name also reminds you that in most of the above cases, if not all, the mad rush is to get to a bounty load of cash. Easy cash that is made difficult to get because…well, just because.

Anxiety and skepticism start creeping in. I looked-up the trailer, to negate the negativity and was ironically challenged by not-so-complimentary discussion about the film's trailer. I didn't give up. I completely enjoy this exercise of looking for a way to go into the theater with as little baggage as possible. Fortunately, the trailer succeeded in at least giving me mixed feelings.

The first reaction, of course, was "oye, this is Bunty aur Babli!!!" And it filled me with optimism, because I don't mind taking a little more of that kind of humor. But, then again, it was written by Jaideep Sahni whose sense of humor is very earthy.

Soon enough, you are reminded by the lead actor, "Badmash Company is no Bunty aur Babli!!" The story, in fact, is set in the 90s where four friends get together to start a company. I told ya! "four people". The title then is appended with the tagline "They do all the wrong things, the right way." That sounds like easy $$ being made in a difficult way. shaking off the cynicism

But how? Usually, I get very excited before watching a film by a first-time director. This time, it turns out, he is someone you've seen as an actor - Parmeet Sethi. In most cases, there is some new approach and good or bad, that is something I look forward to. Also, this excitement is usually controlled. But this once, it is further mutilated by the confession, proud as it may be that the script was written in 6 days. Yes, SIX DAYS -

Mercifully, there is some comfort in the fact that of late, even if it is off and on, the YRF camp has supported some good scripts. Then again, news around the film worries me. Supposedly, due to the similarity between Telgi and a character in the film, an entire sub-plot was chopped off to avoid controversy. The article goes on to say -

Sources also said that the plot didn’t help much to the over-all outcome of the film, as it slowed down its pace.

Uhh…why was it there in the first place, then?

Anyway, other characters are also from real-life - inspired by people the writer-director knew, a part of him. Hmmm…I wonder what would have happened if they were all scandalous. How would they have avoided it? Written another script in the next six days?

Now that the film is made, controversy or not, it has at least one person who has appreciated it. So what if he is the director's son -

The elder one, Aryamaan, has seen it with his mom. He came prepared to lie about liking it, but ended up finding it really cool, like an American flick. “Dad, it’s the best Hindi film I’ve seen,” he said. That gives me hope!

American that really a compliment?

Hopefully, the production values will be contemporary and true to the period the film is set in. Interesting the marketing is trying to engage the target audience, the youth, at the right places - Appeals by the lead pair to join their facebook page, contests on twitter with a sense of humor. The now-traditional do-s are also being done. I especially enjoyed the cast's squabble on Zoom TV. Thoroughly entertaining stuff **evil grin**-

Worry not, publicity rules demand you do the group hug, soon after. After all there is the mandatory lip-lock that the audience will be required to believe. Hopefully the film will be at least as entertaining. And the hope is not misplaced because lead actor, Shahid Kapoor says, he'd rather do a successful film than a good film.

I have no clue why, but I look forward that extra bit for a Shahid Kapoor-starrer. Especially considering, I haven't liked any of his films, I've seen, except for Jab we met. I wonder what the trick is!? Anyway, the almost positive music reviews give hope to the foot-tappers. If nothing else, the song and dance will surely keep them happy. And when you are done with getting your ears used to the music, you can catch the film May 7th onwards.

This review is by guest reviewer IdeaSmith. Ideasmith is a moniker for Ramya, an ex-business analyst on sabbatical and an aspiring novelist. The free-spirited verbal performer in her shows up at The Ideasmithy and The XX Factor.

Remember the Hindi movies of the 70s? The villain would be a moneyed sleazebag whose ill-gotten gains were the result of his smuggling activities. As the decades rolled by and the Indian politico-commercial environment changed, the smuggler was relegated to the role of a side-character, often the comic relief who would explain his livelihood as ‘import-export ka business’ accompanied by a shifty-eyed look and knowing nudges from those who knew what that was a euphemism for. More than a decade later, Bollywood takes us on another tour of the psyche of this interesting character referred to as the ‘smuggler’.

Badmaash Company is a story of four people who board the express train of get-rich-quick schemes and where it takes them. A number of dubious schemes and their execution keep the audience entertained during the first half. At this juncture, I did wonder whether the director had run out of steam and if the movie would falter once the crime-gags were done.

In the second half, the story turns to the characters themselves and their relationships with each other. The movie transitioned well from witty to a somber ending. The slight Dil Chahta Hainesque note (the Badmaash Company is actually called ‘Friends & Co.’) is concluded quite neatly. By the end, it more like a coming of age story. Shahid Kapoor essays the transition from a starry-eyed youngster to a cocky, hardened man-of-the-world with subtle grace. The potential glimpsed in Jab We Met and Kaminey comes into its own with this movie.

Badmaash Company is contemporary in that the protagonist is shown in grey shades instead of the stark moralistic caricatures that were shown in movies made in 90s. Most people of this generation will be able to identify with the clash of attitudes with the earlier generation, the burning ambition and quest for fame, power and money, the disillusionment and even the peace that the characters make with each other and their choices.

Despite the multiple issues that Badmaash Company seeks to address, it is quite light and easy to watch. Real-life witticisms like ethnic jokes, pop feminism and friendly banter (digs at movie stardom dreams) keep us grinning as the story unfolds. After the long dark teatime of the cinemagoer’s soul on account of the IPL, Badmaash Company comes as a welcome shout back into the theatres.

This review is by guest reviewer IdeaSmith. Ideasmith is a moniker for Ramya, an ex-business analyst on sabbatical and an aspiring novelist. The free-spirited verbal performer in her shows up at The Ideasmithy and The XX Factor.

40 reviewers(?) - 13 yays 10 so-so 17 nays

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

Thumbs up, by Stefan S, A Nutshell Review : ...the film examines how the excesses of money can influence and change relationships, and corrupt the inner soul of a man into thinking he's a god, ... full review

Thumbs up, by Amrita Tanna, Bolly Spice : ...Anushka Sharma plays a role in stark contrast to that of her debut. Sharma plays this role effortlessly and shows how versatile an actress she really is.... full review

Thumbs up, by Taran Adarsh, Bollywood Hungama : ...Anushka is a revelation. She looks stunning, her performance is livewire and the chemistry with Shahid is electrifying.... full review

Thumbs up, desi hits : ...The ending was dragged out! ... full review

Thumbs up, by Komal Nahta, DNA : ...the tricks adopted by Karan and his company to fool the authorities are intelligent... full review

Thumbs up, by Gaurav Malani, indiatimes : ...Parmeet Sethi makes an impressive debut as a writer and directs the film with as much finesse and panache.... full review

Thumbs up, Movie Talkies : ...The first half of the movie has a lot of freshness and vitality about it... full review

Thumbs up, by Ajit Duara, Open Magazine : ...The charm of Badmaash Company is in the telling... full review

Thumbs up, by Ankit Ojha, Planet Bollywood : ...a strong script with a very strong execution by the writer... full review

Thumbs up, by K N Gupta, : ...Anupam Kher, Kiran Juneja, Pavan Malhotra and Jameel Khan have proved their skill in their characters... full review

Thumbs up, by Harshita Kohli, StarBoxOffice : on many levels... full review

Thumbs up, by Fakir Hassen, TONIGHT : ...The storyline is innovative, although it could have been told a little better by debutante director Parmeet Sethi, and the songs are all very forgettable. ... full review

Thumbs up, by SpiceZee Bureau, Zee News : ...What’s great about the film is that the ideas shown are really wonderful... full review

So-So, by Rohit Bhatnagar, AOL INDIA : ...He is not just looking stunning in the movie but has also put forth a praiseworthy performance... full review

So-So, by Aparajita Ghosh, Apun Ka Choice : ...the cons are repeated almost similarly throughout the film. ... full review

So-So, by Baradwaj Rangan, Blogical Conclusion, The New Sunday Express : ...The only company he’s loyal to is his own, the one inside his head, the one he dreams of being listed on the stock exchange.... full review

So-So, by Mayank Shekhar, Hindustan Times : ...You can tell when a script's half-written. But up till that point, written phenomenally well.... full review

So-So, Indicine : ...Shahid Kapoor gets it right at times, but isn’t very consistent with his performance.... full review

So-So, by Udita Jhunjhunwala, Live Mint : ...Sethi manages to get the best out of Sharma and Kapoor... full review

So-So, by Ashok Nayak, Now : ...Just when you think, things couldn't really get worse from here on, comes the climax... full review

So-So, by Subhash K Jha, Now : ... too smart for its own good... full review

So-So, by Namrata Joshi, Outlook India : ...Badmaash Company goes a step ahead to pay homage to YRF’s star writer Jaideep Sahni. All the significant elements can be traced back to a Sahni film... full review

So-So, by Nikhat Kazmi, Times of India : ...a bunch of riveting scenes, although the story does follow a very predictable line ... full review

Thumbs down, by Bobby Sing, Bobby Talks : ...As per the demand of the subject, this section should have been avoided or dealt in some other interesting way, not hampering the pace of the movie... full review

Thumbs down, by Bollyfan, Cinemaa Online : ...For those expecting a breezy and youthful entertainer, this can be like a ride across Karnataka’s state highways in a merc without shocks.... full review

Thumbs down, by Deepa Garimella, : ...Anushka is around just for the pretty clothing and a lot of forced swankiness - she's about the most pleasant thing in the movie, though. ... full review

Thumbs down, by Martin D' Souza, : ... has no meat... full review

Thumbs down, by Amitava, : ...The second half saved the movie a little bit.... full review

Thumbs down, by Kaveree Bamzai, india today : ...But even more toe-curling than all this are the actual scams, which sound as if they were written on an excel sheet... full review

Thumbs down, by Mihir Fadnavis, : ...Call me a victim of cultural brainwashing, but even the audience snickered at the idea of Anushka Sharma conning Manhattan police... full review

Thumbs down, by Tushar Joshi, MiD DAY : ...the guy plays by the Yashraj rulebook ” scenic locales, scorching kiss between the leads, a beach song for the heroine and a virtuous mummy-daddy jodi.... full review

Thumbs down, by Anupama Chopra, NDTV : ...The first half of Badmaash Company is dull but somewhat coherent... full review

Thumbs down, by Sethumadhavan, Passion for Cinema : ...a movie which falls under a completely new category- movies which are plain boring... full review

Thumbs down, by Sampurn, real bollywoood : ...Meiyang Chang oozes cool and Vir Das is hilarious... full review

Thumbs down, by Raja Sen, Rediff : ...Meiyang Chang of Indian Idol seems to have gotten this gig simply because of his Chinese roots, leading to some weak gags. ... full review

Thumbs down, by Sonia Chopra, Sify Movies : ...Anushka Sharma lacks the chutzpah of her character. ... full review

Thumbs down, by K K Rai, STARDUST : ... The same amateurish idea to earn big money is repeated every now and then, and Shahid could not make it look fresh in the film. ... full review

Thumbs down, The Friday Freak : ...debutante director shows sparks of knowing his trade, especially at ... two scenes ... full review

Thumbs down, by Pratim D Gupta, The Telegraph : ...con film for dummies... full review

Thumbs down, by filmbear, Upper Stall : ...Shahid Kapoor is actually not bad. The boy has screen presence and does manage to look a little like Brad Pitt if his mouth is closed. ... full review

Twitter reviews for this movie are not available.

13 readers - 11 yays 2 so-so 0 nays

Yay! Thumbs Up, by Bill : Nice!

Yay! Thumbs Up, by : For all English Songs Lyrics visit this website

Yay! Thumbs Up, by : Tamil songs Lyrics available here

Yay! Thumbs Up, by Pakiisp

Yay! Thumbs Up, by Pakistani music

Yay! Thumbs Up, by Rick : cool

Yay! Thumbs Up, by Rocky j

Yay! Thumbs Up, by sagar : 100% ENTERTAINING..AND MUST WATCHED..

Yay! Thumbs Up, by Shopping Online : Superb movie

Yay! Thumbs Up, by TimELiebe : Smart Adult Entertaining White Collar Crime Film, Uses Masala Tropes Well For Deeper Story

Yay! Thumbs Up, by Yeng33

So-So, by Durable Goods

So-So, by Namaste

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

Plot Summary

For all its depth, the movie only depicts one character really well - Shahid Kapoor's Karan. Meiyang Chang's Tenzing provides adequate material for ethnic humour but doesn't really go beyond that. Vir Das is also wasted in the role of a sidekick, mouthing one half of the jokes (the other half being the taglines supplied by Chang). Anushka Sharma just feels like Rab Ne Bana Di's Taani in western wear.

What Worked

For a story depicting an earlier time (and even era), the film doesn’t look dated at all. If you look really hard, you notice that the cars are the boxy varieties which were our only options back in the early 90s. Key phone conversations are all held on landline and STD/ISD services are big, keeping of course, with the pre-mobile phone era. But each of these motifs is incorporated smoothly into the movie and one might not even notice them unless one is specifically looking for them.

What did not

Note: This section simply lists the things that I did not like in this movie. This is not the overall impression about this movie. Please read the full review here

The characters costumes and styling look more contemporary than the pre-liberalisation times (men’s kurtis, spiky hairdos, rebonded hair). Since the camera focuses on the characters and close-up most of the times, the look is more modern than expected.


This section lists things that I think are not important to the overall impact of the movie. In most cases, it could be explained away by something like, "we noticed the glitch after the scene was shot and there were schedule/budget issues and thus we could not re-shoot it". I like giving the makers the benefit of doubt, but I am amused nevertheless. Hopefully, they will tickle you too.

In one scene, one of the friends is standing outside a movie-rental library. Viewed from inside the shop, he is framed in the doorway and the poster stuck on it is of Baazigar. This is very near the end and seems to be a tongue-in-cheek comment on the character, a sort of ‘make the comparison if you notice it’ touch. Nicely done.

An actor of Anupam Kher’s caliber has very little footage in the movie. But he sparkles in the one scene that is his uniquely – while receiving a lifetime achievement award where he says that the award is usually received with modesty but that he will take it with pride.

It is not very clear just how Jazz mama made his millions in U.S.A. Particularly in a story about dubious schemes, the question seems to hang in the air. The mystery grates a bit since one is not sure whether to empathize with him later for being a man of honest means who gets sucked into criminal abetting or to think that he’s just getting what he deserves. Either way, his luxurious surroundings and flamboyance are highly convenient to the plot.

Parental Guidance:

Violence: No gore but domestic violence is hinted at.
Language: Swearing is hinted at (“Eff off”) in some scenes.
Nudity & Sexual content: Some kissing scenes and the song ‘Chaska Chaska’ shows some fairly sizzling sex. Premarital sex and unwed pregnancy are shown in a matter-of-fact manner.
Concept: The easy path of crime doesn't bring happiness in the end.
General Look and Feel: Glossy and bright, even in the darker scenes.

Detailed Ratings (out of 5):

Lead Actors:
Character Artists:
Music Director:

Badmaash Company - Cast, crew, links

Background Score:
Music Director:
Costume Designer:
Art Direction:
Running time:
120 minutes

Comments (17)

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Contemporary since the protagonist is shown in grey shades? Hmmm...what about the lesson in morality? The honesty is the best policy potion that the film is seeped in?

As for what you call ethnic jokes, IMO, they are no more than lame & insensitive schoolboy humour. Ask someone from the north-east how they feel about these "Chinese" jokes.

@Bollyfan: Most jokes are at someone else's expense. I have (like most of us) been at the receiving end of my share of ethnic jokes. But it's possible to discern the malice from the banter. The jokes in BADMAASH COMPANY are exchanged between friends, just the way people in real life do...not to make someone feel bad but as a normal part of the bonding process. Of note, the movie also touches (albeit lightly) on how Chinese jokes could be hurtful to people from North-East and the perperator apologizes. Thank you for commenting.

Apologises and then continues later on. That's where the insensitivity comes out. Compare it with the sensitivity of a Shimit Amin, who also made a couple of "Chinky" jokes in Chak De India, but made up with a powerful comeback rather than a light touch.

And the malice comes forth in caricature that the Reebok executive is.

Moreover, the jokes weren't even funny. The last time I laughed at such jokes was when they used to be forwarded thru emails, a dozen years ago.

The movie's a good baby stem in the realm of crime related movies. However, if you have a DVD of Oceans 11 or 13, or even The Sting, keep this movie until it comes up on Moserbaer. :D

wow! what a movie! after long time such a nice thug movie and believe me its amazing. Shahid and Anushka rocks... very amazing ideas of cheating buyers. of course not at all close to reality but belive me a sure shot movie for shahid's hit list.

OK, this comment is not related to the movie (I am still waiting to see that - thinking of catching it in the cinema as I am in India for the summer).

A friend of mine has this blog where he posts quizzes which make you guess the lyrics of bollywood songs / movies by looking at pictures. I have found it to be quite interesting ... maybe there are more bollywood fans here that might be interested in it. Here's the link:

Hi Meetu

Please correct the Runtime of Badmaash Company - You have listed it as 2 Minutes!!!

@real bollyfan I agree with haulerz99 here. If you don't like a film, do you think you'll be able to make a better film?

@Ali Naveed Done! Thanks a ton for pointing it out!

It's just a very ordinary timepass movie targeted to 18-24 yrs. group.

@Article directory and @Amit and that is very proudly the aim of the makers - timepass!

@Amit didn't know you visit wogma! A pleasant surprise!

I think its worth to watch movie.Rating is 3.5

good movie

its nice movie especially that one.."bade se bada....idea se bada hota hai

@TimELiebe I thought the movie was alright. Could have been so much better.

@TimELiebe sorry? *sheepish smile*

'could have been better' is the feeling i remember coming out with. Exactly what - i think i will have to watch it again to be specific.


On spot about the 'insider trading'. That was my first thought. I was like - whoa .. he wants to make a clean start & earn money the noble & righteous way ... & here he goes buying shares which he knows are going to spike up later due to inside information. Having said that, this was not the only error in screenplay .. but definitely a BIG one.. which shakes the premise of the transformation from bad to good..
This was my first thought after watching the movie & so I googled to check if anyone else thought so too :)

@Meetu - not to worry. I respect what you're site's doing - and I feel bad that I tend to be more "spoilerish" than you like.

@MK - oh, good! I'm not the only one, then! My wife and friends thought I was being picky when I brought it up - they pointed out certain aspects of "American Crime and Punishment" (let's leave it at that) set the movie in an alternate universe that's kind of like our United States, but much less rigid and vindictive.

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