I enjoyed Bang Bang a lot more than I thought I would – after face palming and laughing at some of the crazy clangers in the first twenty minutes, I soon got on board with the wacky premise and certainly in the run up to the interval, I was engaged and entertained. When there are crazy action sequences with some impressive stunts or foreign locales used to good effect, Bang Bang is in its element, having fun and everything seeming quite effortless. There are also a great deal of Hollywood moments successfully infused with a desi flavour which I rather liked as this was the natural course this remake of Knight and Day should have taken.
I did have a few issues with Bang Bang though – the first was the evident James Bond hard on that the film has. Whether it is Rajveer in a fetching red velvet tux or jetski chases, I felt the film really tried a bit too hard to evoke that espionage feel when it was doing perfectly well as an action romp with a dash of romance. The second was the over use of masala where remote towns have tablets but not Tinder (the dating app) and logic taking flying leaps that were a little too much at times.
Performance wise, Roshan and Kaif have an interesting pairing – sometimes Roshan does the cocky hero well, at times Kaif hits her mark as a ditzy heroine but for me, it was during the action and dance sequences that their chemistry really came alive. I did feel they were both operating on different frequencies but in their defence, the screenplay and direction do not give as much support in bringing them together as it could have. Dezongpa and Jaffri are criminally wasted in cameos as villains as is Shergill who gives ridiculous gib credibility. However, it is Harleen’s grandmother who steals the show with her witty delivery that had the audience in stitches.
To its credit, Bang Bang tries hard to steer away from being a straight up remake of its source material and to find feet of its own. When it does, this is exactly the kind of popcorn friendly adventure film that is as crucial to Hindi cinema as the films that are at the opposite end of the spectrum. Whilst it was hard for me to suspend my cynicism completely, when I did, Bang Bang was an enjoyable watch and not the hot mess I had expected it to be. One to satisfy the masala fiend within, this certainly gives a bang for one’s buck.