Initial impressions of Beeba Boys suggest a stylish veneer. Under this flimsy surface however, there is not much to satisfy viewers.
Jeet Johar is tired of the old guard in the Vancouver’s drugs and arms trade, and wishes to be top dog. Aided by a new recruit, Jeet and his band of Beeba Boys take on the established crime lord…
The problems with writer-director Deepa Mehta’s Beeba Boys is manifold. The narrative is unoriginal and does not stand up to scrutiny. The dialogue is poor, and the characters are one-dimensional. Furthermore, the attempts at style in direction come across as hackneyed.
Beeba Boys takes cues from other gangster movies. However, it is neither a homage to nor a pastiche of previous films of this genre. The cartoonish style could have worked if it had been carried through. Instead, Beeba Boys attempts a more serious slant which seems grating with the gratuitous violence.
There seems to be a lack of thought as to how the narrative would progress, with earlier exclamations tripping up later scenes. Beeba Boys is not a boring film, however some of the dialogue, situations and acting is likely to have viewers cringing. The twist in the climax of the film comes across as ill thought out, and the climax itself lacks the tension it should.
The message of the perils of the gang lifestyle is lost due to the lack of well-rounded characters. It is difficult to care about the outcomes of the main characters when they have been drawn with a lack of authenticity. Moreover, some of the gang members are given caricature traits. Despite being called Manny the Joker, the character is simply not funny. Katya is given short shrift, with her descend depicted in a rushed and uneven fashion.
Costumes in Beeba Boys are great. It is a shame that the quality of these are not replicated in the film as a whole.
Beeba Boys is being screened at the London Film Festival in October 2015.