To buy Harshvardhan Kapoor as an actor and as a superhero might be two different things, but the result of both will be same. You will not be able to do it. And, in the case of Bhavesh Joshi Superhero, the latter depends on the former.
I am a huge Vikramaditya Motwane fan, and why shouldn’t I (or anyone) be. He has, after all, given us films like Udaan, Lootera and recently Trapped. Judging by his previous films, I did go with a mindset that the film will be a little slow. But what worked in his previous works, doesn’t work here at all. The plot and storyline of the film are good, and a lot can be done around it, but the pace, especially in the second half, is too slow. Lifting the eyes, long landscape shots, smiling at one another will work in a film like Lootera because that is the pace that kind of film demands. But a thriller like Bhavesh Joshi Superhero needs speed. And if not speed, at least a good hero.
A thriller is supposed to be like Sujoy Ghosh’s Kahaani, not just fast, but also wonderfully performed (by Vidya Balan).
Talking about the story, there are three friends, played by Harshvardhan Kapoor, Priyanshu Painyuli and Ashish Verma, who want to save the city of Mumbai by arousing peoples conscience if they do any wrong like giving bribes, breaking a red light and so on and so forth, until, one of them spots a huge water stealing scam and follows it. Then there is some killing, a lot of chasing and, eventually, revenge. There is one chase scene, in the climax of the film, that is very brilliantly choreographed and shot. But apart from that, almost nothing in the film excited me enough. For a film that was announced in 2014, 4 years from today, this film is a huge letdown. You wrote this after 4 whole years, in which you made the wonderful Trapped?
I haven’t watched Harshvardhan Kapoor’s Mirzya, and don’t even want to, and hence I walked into BJS with a clean slate, which is still clean, because I just didn’t see Kapoor as an actor. He was, just there, like Sonam Kapoor in most of her films. He emotes exactly like the mask he wears. Whether he’s laughing, or crying or expressing his love, it is all the same.
Priyanshu Painyuli and Ashish Verma are the show stealers here, especially Painyuli. There are various scenes that Painyuli attempts first and then are reshot and re-shown to us with Kapoor in them, and you can see the stark difference. Both the actors are being chased, are beaten up, but Kapoor knows that there is a camera watching him, and he is not going to be hurt. On the other hand, Painyuli seems to fight and run as if he’s really in a fix.
BJS could have been a better film, had Motwane picked a different actor to be his superhero. But even then, it wouldn’t have been a great film.
A lot of work would’ve been required on his part to provide pace to this film. With a runtime of 2 hours 35 minutes, the film is too long to be a thriller. Though the film runs well in the first half, the second half will make you think about walking out of it. And the reason for the same is not only a decline in the pace, but also because Kapoor is the only actor who is there in the second half, barring some scenes, and he doesn’t have the capability and/or power to lift even one scene on only his shoulders.
All in all, Bhavesh Joshi Superhero is not worth your time and money. I would have been able to do away with the pace had there been a better actor leading this narrative, and you too will root for the same.
If I had to rate the film: