Movie Review : Sanju

Sanju: A Heart Warming Blend of Reality & Fiction

Sanju Review“Sanju” was in limelight from the day the movie was launched, the reason, the talented combination of Rajkumar Hirani and Ranbir Kapoor coming together for the first time and above all the man on which the movie is based Sanjay Dutt, whose life has been nothing more of a blockbuster movie.

“Sanju” largely captures two very eminent chapters of Sanjay Dutt’s life, one his struggle during his drugs days and how he rose like a phoenix and re-started his life, and second his brush with law for possession of arms first under TADA and next under Arms Act. It also captures his relationships with his parents and his friends with the most emphasis on his relationship with his father Sunil Dutt.

The deadly combination of Rajkumar Hirani and Abhijat Joshi again weaves in the magic as their previous movies (Munnabhai MBBS, Lage Raho Munnabhai, 3 Idiots and PK). The screenplay is the strongest point of the movie wherein Sanjay Dutt is not shown holier than thou and is shown as human with all the shortcomings and shown more as a victim of circumstances, which may not be completely true but we are not complaining. The movie primarily captures what the Dutt household went through during Sanjay’s Drugs days and later his case for keeping AK 56, what the common people do not know and how media played havoc in their lives. It makes you laugh, it makes you cry and it makes you think whether all is true that is circulated in the form of news. The screenplay very smartly blends the melodrama to heighten the emotional quotient but still it keeps you entertained and does not look over the top. The father son scenes are the highlight of the movie and stays with you long after the movie is over.

Even the best of screenplay cannot shine without the right set of actors and the casting by Mukesh Chabra is apt. Ranbir Kapoor as Sanjay Dutt just kills it by living the role and gets everything correct, right from the mannerism to the swag and the way he looks from being a 20 year old to a man of 50 years, even the way he talks, all is so apt that 10 minutes into the movie and you forget the real Sanjay Dutt and start thinking Ranbir as Sanjay Dutt. Ranbir Kapoor will definitely sweep all the awards for this year in all award functions. We can say Ranbir Kapoor is back. Vicky Kaushal as Sanju’s friend Kanhaiyalal Kapasi does a brilliant job, he is not only good in comic sequences but raises the bar in emotional scenes, especially that one scene when he confronts Paresh Rawal who plays Sunil Dutt. Vicky after “Raazi” re-iterates his calibre and credential with “Sanju”. Vicky will sweep all the awards for “Best Supporting Actor” category this year. Paresh Rawal as Sunil Dutt gives a crackling performance; especially his scenes with Ranbir Kapoor are a delight to watch. Manisha Koirala who plays Nargis Dutt brings the breath of fresh air in her performance of an ailing mother who is spirited and loves his son to death, a brilliant come back I must say. Anushka Sharma as the biographer Winnie Diaz, though a relatively small role but she makes an impact nonetheless. Dia Mirza as Manyata Dutt does not have much to do. Jim Sarbh as the drug pedlar Zubin Mistry continues with his mean act with élan. Sonam Kapoor brings the glamour quotient to the movie. Rest of the cast like Boman Irani, Karsihma Tanna, Sayaji Shinde and Anjan Shrivastav do a good job.

Rajkumar Hirani does not lose his Midas touch in “Sanju”. His simplistic way of narration strikes the chord, making it relatable and connecting with the audience well. The beauty of Rajkumar Hirani is that he keeps the melodrama intact without making is jarring and even in serious scenes he has the element of humour which makes it entertaining. Hirani has this knack of creating the right ambience for his scenes whether it is a comic sequence or an emotional scene which does the magic. Yet again Rajkumar Hirani proves his worth as a fabulous film maker.

A movie cannot be what it is without its technical crew who make the vision of the director live. Starting with the cinematography by S Ravi Varman, who presents Hirani’s vision with the right colour and texture to the scenes through his camera, Production Designer Shashank Tere accentuates visual appeal of the movie with the right props as per the time which is being presented in the scene.

There are precisely 4 songs in movie starting with “Main Bhi Bandhiyaan” by Rohan-Rohan which is beautifully sung by Sonu Nigam and Sunidhi Chauhan and is a fun song, which will play in the party circles for long, Ruby Ruby by A R Rahman is melodious but I thought that song was not given its due credit in the execution, the third song “Kar Har Maidan Fateh” is a motivational song by Vikram Montrose and sung hauntingly by Sukhwindara Singh and Shreya Ghoshal is the best track of the movie and even in the movie it comes at the right time and the last song which is in the credits “Baba Bolta Hain Bas Ho gaya” is again a fun song by Vikram Montrose and sung by Papon and Ranbir Kapoor has an element of surprise in the movie.

In a nutshell “Sanju” strikes the right chord, thanks to the magic created by Rajkumar Hirani and the fabulous performance by Ranbir Kapoor and rest of the cast, making it one of the best biopic of Bollywood, I will go with 4 stars.

Movie Rating: (4 / 5)

Movie Review: Welcome Back

Welcome Back: Slap Stick & Brainless comedy is BACK

Statutory Warning: While watching “Welcome Back” please keep your brains aside….Welcome Back Poster

Anees Bazmi is back with the sequel of his 2007 hit “Welcome” and his genre of comedy which is completely over the top, chaotic and off course lack of story….

“Welcome Back” starts again with Uday Bhai (Nana Patekar) and Majnu Bhai (Anil Kapoor) who again fall for the same girl Chandni (Ankita Shrivastava) but they need to get their sister Ranjana (Shruti Hasan) married to a decent guy, but the problem is she is in love with Ajju Bhai (John Abraham) who is Dr Ghungru’s (Paresh Rawal) son. Confused??? Don’t be because there is no cohesive story….

Story (or lack of it) is by Anees Bazmi & Rajeev Kaul and the screenplay is credited to a list of writers Anees Bazmi, Rajeev Kaul, Rajan Aggarwal & Praful Parekh, still the screenplay is inconsistent and looks like various situations have been first written and then all of them have been collectively put to make a screenplay. The emphasis is on Slapstick comedy and bizzare situations in an attempt to make us laugh. To give credit to the writers some of the sequences do make you laugh but then such sequences are limited. The sequences between Uday Bhai and Majnu Bhai are the only once which are worth a laugh rest all is trash in the name of comedy. Rather after certain point of time the sequences are monotonous. The climax is the most bizarre that I have seen for a long time. Overall a very sub standard writing….

The Dialogues by Raaj Shaandilyaa compliments the slap stick comedy theme of the screenplay but is quite irritating as well. The best dialogues are when Uday and Majnu interact…

It is the performances which are the saving grace to some extent. Nana Patekar as Uday Shetty is the best amongst the cast, his straight face portrayal will make you laugh and some of the so called comic moments have been provided by Nana Patekar. Anil Kapoor as Majnu also does complete justice to the character and the combination of both Nana & Anil Kapoor as Uday Bhai & Majnu Bhai is the highlight of the movie as it was in the previous part “Welcome”. John Abraham as Ajju Bhai a.k.a Ajay is a complete misfit, though he tries hard to be the rowdy gangster but fails miserably with only one expression all throughout the movie, honestly speaking John should stop trying comic roles as he is a Disaster, he should stick to action films which suits his physique and his frown face. Paresh Rawal again reprises is his earlier role of Dr Ghungru and he keeps his character exactly the same as it was in the previous movie. Nasseruddin Shah as Wanted Bhai brings some stability to the chaos and proves his mettle yet again by performing well, even though the writing was faulty, in short rising above the writing, a true performer. The girls Dimple Kapadia is utterly wasted as Maharani, Shruti Hasan as Ranjana is there only to look good and newcomer Ankita Shrivastava as Chandni was only there to look sexy and with skimpiest and garish dresses and even more garish make up. Shiney Ahuja as Honey looks confused as if he has landed on the sets by mistake. As for the rest of the cast the less said the better. Frankly speaking I missed Akshay Kumar tremendously….

Though a whole list of music composers have been credited for the music namely Anu Mallik, Meet Bros Anjjan, Yo Yo Honey Singh, Siddhant Madhav & Mika Singh, but unfortunately none of the compositions are worth while…rather some of the songs are outright cheap and so is the choreography by Ganesh Acharya…

Anees Bazmi  seems to be still stuck to his early 2000 formula of slap stick comedy which looks dated today and even if this movie works in the box office, still I think Anees Bazmi should rethink about the kind of script he writes and the kind of movie he makes if he wants to continue making movies in these times.

There is no problem of slap stick but only if it has a cohesive script, which was nonexistent in “Welcome Back”….

I will go with Two & a Half Stars… One additional star for Nana Patekar, Anil Kapoor & Nasseruddin Shah

Movie Rating: (2.5 / 5)

Movie Review : Raja Natwarlal

Raja Natwarlal : A Con Act which fell short

Kunal Deshmukh and Emraan Hashmi combo is back after their successful association in Jannat & Jannat 2.

This time Kunal chooses a subject of a con man Raja (Emraan Hashmi) who after doing small con jobs with the help of his mentor Raghav (Deepak Raja Natwarlal ReviewTijori) wants to do a big con job so that he can fulfill his dream of marrying the bar dancer Ziya (Humaima Malik). The con job goes wrong and Raghav is killed by businessman cum mafia don Vardha Yadav’s (Kay Kay Menon) men. Raja sets out to take revenge from Vardha Yadav by coning him with the help of famous con artist Yogi (Paresh Rawal) and sell him a fake cricket team worth One Fifty crores. The rest of the movie covers how Raja and Yogi execute their con act…

Story by Parvez Sheikh is promising but where the movie loses its grip is with Parvez’s screenplay with too many sub plots of hit man, corrupt police and the love angle which actually poses a hindrance in the narration and slows down the pace with its songs which look out of place especially the first half. The screenplay also has too many loopholes; some con acts look too convenient to be true. It is the climax which is impressive and brings the sub plots together. But it could have been better paced. The script had all the makings of a good con movie but falls short as most part of the movie the screenplay looks scattered and lacks cohesiveness.

Dialogues by Sanjay Masoom complement the genre and narration well with subtle humor and are realistic.

Emraan Hashmi has improved tremendously especially after “Shanghai” he does complete justice to his character Raja. It is Paresh Rawal who steals the limelight with his fantastic portrayal of Yogi; it is always a delight to watch such a brilliant actor perform. Kay Kay Menon is back with his impressive portrayal of the cunning and shrewd Vardha Yadav, he gives face to a true villain of Bollywood who is menacing as well as unpredictable, a true delight. Humaima Mallik’s debut act is nothing to write home about but she somehow does a decent job. Deepak Tijori makes a comeback with Raghav and he creates an impact with his brief role. Rest of the cast also does a good job.

Music by Yuvaan Shankar Raja is average and does not create too much of an impact. Cinematography by Raaj Chakravarti is good but nothing out of the world.

Kunal Deshmukh tries to balance between being realistic and fictional, but fails a bit on the realistic front and goes a bit overboard with cinematic liberties becoming too fictional. Nevertheless Kunal’s attempt is good and better than many movies which released in the recent past. Do not expect a “Special 26” and you won’t be disappointed. I will go with Two & A Half Star….

Movie Rating: (2.5 / 5)