if there’s one fault with bombay velvet, it’s that kashyap is a little too impatient with his relatively scruffy characters, and over-eager to have them explode into bloody-knuckled violence; while maybe it’s a realist-style choice to play the film through with an eye to contemporary bollywood cinema, it is a little much to see all the characters and the film’s entire plot ending up mangled on the floor.
and if bombay velvet doesn’t click with the cognoscenti, well, at least it’s a pleasure to see such a vivid slice of life in bright and bombastic colours. it’s clear that kashyap is a filmmaker with a sound knowledge of the film industry, and his eye for the all-too-familiar social and commercial landscapes of bollywood is very keen indeed; his bravura handling of the camera, particularly in the exuberant nightclub sequences, is something else to behold. mumbai’s glamour-pinup parade is brought off with a flourish.
ultimately, what bombay velvet is, is a film that can be judged in a single sitting: an outrageous, globe-trotting, self-indulgent daydream of a bollywood musical, in which everything from period, clothing and even interior design is turned into a virtual model, a genre of cinema that exists in a state of abject parody in most other contemporary hindi films.
in terms of location and atmosphere the film is almost identical to romeo + juliet in its depiction of the citys early 20th century brothel districts, and like baz luhrmanns film it indulges in a little fabricating to spice up its story. but kashyap has kept some details consistent, such as the flashy credit sequence (reminiscent of the last emperor) and the appearances of the actors whose real-life counterparts he has recreated. anurag kashyap is clearly a fans favourite amongst bollywood directors, with it was a very very very long time ago in a village far far far away, gangs of wasseypur and bombay velvet constantly making the cut for the best films of the year lists. 3d9ccd7d82