#TIFF15: “BEEBA BOYS”
Review by George Kozera for Mr. Will Wong
Touted as the first gangster movie directed by a woman in 40 years, BEEBA BOYS, from acclaimed, Oscar-nominated Deepa Metha, mixes guns, bhangra beats, cocaine, interracial romance and traditional family values with brutal violence and culture clashes. Set in Vancouver, it tells the story of Indo-Canadian, Jeet Johar (played by Bollywood star Randeep Hooda) and his gang of foul-mouth, outrageously-flashy and colourfully-dressed frat boyish friends who want to take over the drug and arms scene. At face value, other than the intense Jeet, they could be mistaken for a motley crew of misfits, but no one should ever cross their way.
While in prison waiting to be acquitted for murder, Jeet meets Nep (a multi-layered performance from Toronto based actor Ali Momen) and asks him to join his gang as they plot to take over the turf of a respected old school businessman. At his murder trial, Jeet cruises and ultimately winds up with a pretty Polish manicurist. To have a white, preferably blonde, girlfriend gives male Indo-Canadian gangsters status; just another trophy and possession as important as the latest BMW or Rolex.
Metha’s mastery with the camera and exquisite eye for detail is all there to see on screen. Sadly, BEEBA BOYS fails to make the mark on many levels due to a script lacking originality. The screenplay is unable to make it out the shadows of SCARFACE, the F-Bombs and pop culture chats between the gangsters echo PULP FICTION. There is a plot twist near the end, so ridiculously contrived, it elicits groans from this audience member. Despite a brilliant cameo performance from a manbunned Paul Gross and a stellar job by Ali Momen, BEEBA BOYS regretfully is not Deepa Metha’s finest moment.
Mongrel Media release BEEBA BOYS, screening at TIFF ’15:
Sun Sep 13 6:30 PM
ROY THOMSON HALL
Mon Sep 14 2:30 PM