SANJU – (2018) : Movie Review
SANJU : A much publicised , over hyped and overtly dramatised biopic of the official “bad boy” of Bollywood – Sanjay Dutt. An eminent film maker like Hirani chronicles the life and times of Dutt through his biased bioscope lenses !
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The biopic deals with Dutt’s drug addiction, his involvement in the 1992-93 Bombay bomb blasts and his time spent in the jail. Throughout the biopic Dutt is projected as the proverbial victim, it’s unfortunate that a director of Hirani’s caliber who has directed such classics like Munnabhai MBBS (2003), Lage Raho MunnaBhai (2006) and 3 idiots (2009) has disappointed with his favourite hero’s biopic. In an desperate attempt to super glorify Dutt’s gigantic blunders Hirani fails in uplifting his film, this is undoubtedly his weakest film till date in terms of conceptualisation and story telling.
Very recently we had former Indian cricket player Mohammed Azharuddin trying to prove to the world that he’s no lesser than a Saint with the super flop biopic Azhar (2016), there is not much difference here as well, except perhaps Hirani’s movie is made on a skyrocketed budget and higher scale with bigger stars. Hirani unabashedly blames the media for sensationalising Dutt’s involvement in possessing the AK-56(?) and gives him a clean chit in the entire Blast case, so basically the Law and Order, the media and everybody else was framing an innocent actor in this issue, that’s what this biopic tries very hard to convey, sad but true ! Sorry Hirani you’ve disappointed big time.
Ranbir Kapoor is extraordinarily fantastic in the titular role, what a brilliant performance, he easily slips into the various stages of Dutt’s controversial life from 1980-2015, Kapoor proves he’s one of the best actors our country has at the moment. Comparatively Paresh Rawal is miscast as Senior Dutt, his portrayal lacks the authenticity that is visible in Kapoor’s. Vicky Kaushal is earnest in a slightly half baked one dimensional role as Dutt’s close confidante. Jim Sarbh hams and that accent gyrates on the nerves.
Anushka Sharma flaunts a visibly disgusting duck pout and is best ignored as an NRI author who’s penning Dutt’s biography. Sonam Kapoor’s high pitched grunts resembling a pig are a torture to frail eardrums, her quest to find the penguin studded Mangalsutra leaves you pulling your hair in disgust. Two women who stand out even in brief appearances are Manisha Koirala ( as Nargis Dutt) who infuses grace and poignance in her role of the cancer battling ailing mother, and Dia Mirza ( as Manyaata) is sincere and impressive as the supportive selfless wife.
Music is quite okay and the songs do not disrupt the flow of the movie, ‘Main Badhiya’ is passable but ‘Ruby Ruby’ grooves and stays along( picturised on an disinterested Sonam) but the best song is ‘Kar Har Maidan Fateh’ sung in his inimitable style by Sukhwinder Singh and supported by Shreya Ghoshal ( The poignant and inspiring picturisation on Kapoor & Koirala leaves you spell bound).
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Overall a mixed response to this unimaginably hyped film which is let down by the director’s loyal yet biased attempt to glorify and project the Actor as an helpless victim, when you are directing a biopic it gets more credibility when you are honest & sincere in the attempt rather than misleading or misrepresenting the facts with dramatised fiction. The only saving grace is the exceptional performance by the lead actor who breathes authenticity and perfection in his portrayal of the “Bollywood Bad Brat- Sanju”.