Bhola Kevat (Aditya Om) is a man of limited means who lives a miserable life in rural Uttar Pradesh. He gets harassed by cops and villagers for crimes he didn’t commit, in every possible way, physically, psychologically and sexually!
Life changes for Bhola when he’s rescued by Lochan (Arshad Khan). A politician’s ace shooter, Lochan makes Bhola realise that to be feared, one must know how to use a gun. The two become star sharp-shooters, formidable names in UP’s gang wars. Will Bhola be able to keep love and loyalty aside to be the best in the business?
The film intends to show the major role gun violence plays in politics but ends up focusing on one individual. There is no revelation in the story or emotional connect with characters. The film also doesn’t take a stand on violence. Atrocities against girls, rich exploiting poor, are issues touched upon but seem unnecessary.
Dialogues seem more scandalous than authentic. The hero says, “Mard banne ke liye doh cheejen aani chahiye – condom chadana aur bandook chalana (you need to know two things to become a man – how to use guns and put on a condom).” Performances and songs are impressive. Actor-director Aditya Om plays his part with conviction. Arshad Khan is decent. Rekha Bhardwaj’s song ‘Chunav Re‘ stands out.
Bandook leaves you a tad confused about what exactly the filmmaker intends to portray. Positively, it doesn’t glorify gun violence and captures the UP mafia well.
A man turns to guns and violence, believing that’s the only way to achieve power in society.