Gully Boy Review
Zoya Akhtar's Luck By Chance was an underrated gem and then she fell for Bollywood and produced pointless cinema where everyone was rich and were off to cruises to solve domestic issues. She redeems herself with Gully Boy which may be a paint by numbers underdog story but it has so much spunk, so much attitude that you find yourself rooting for all the bad boys from the slum who practice their 'rap' attitude in front of the mirror.
The comparison to Eminem's 8 Mile are natural but what this cast and crew bring to the film is so uniquely Bombay, you cannot stop staring at the screen. And every single character has a perfect place in the universe. Hats off for Vijay Maurya who wrote the hard hitting dialog for the film. He plays Murad's uncle who gives him a job, and inadvertently the reason to leave it: everyone is given one opportunity in life, so make the right choice.
Murad is played brilliantly by Ranveer Singh, the unstoppable. He wrenches every emotion out of you, the audience. You feel the anger, the boredom, the helplessness of his situation, his righteousness, his everything when he feels it. The camerawork is so superb, you don't feel like an intruder in Murad's life. The camera is you, watching things happen to Murad. You don't feel like you are intruding when Murad and his girl kiss, simply because that's what needs to happen in that scene. It's not pretentious at all. Alia Bhatt plays the jealous girlfriend who is a devil in hijab.
So Murad writes all night long because he knows hip hop is the way he feels. He meets MC Sher (a brilliant debut by Siddhant Chaturvedi) who becomes a friend and guides him on rhythm and beat. There's Kalki Koechlin who plays Sky, and she helps catapult Murad into YouTube fame by producing his video. But Murad's life drags him down and Vijay Raaz the one and only plays the father who creates nothing but more angst for the young man.
The Lyrics of the rap songs are brilliantly conceived and you begin to feel for these boys who have nothing to look forward to in their lives and maybe they will be dead without ever causing a ripple. But Murad's lyrics and his need to 'bak deneka' (go out and vomit all the feelings) makes him a star...
This film works on so many levels, that when it sags in the middle, you let it be because Alia Bhatt could turn around and slap you and bring you right back into the story. A brilliant film after a long time, and you take Ranveer Singh back into your heart as you think, 'Apna time aayega' (my time will come!).
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