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GULAAL : A Critique's Delight may be but its confusion for the common viewer. (Review By Bobby Sing)

13 Mar, 2009 | Movie Reviews / 2009 Releases

Delivering what was expected, here is another quality abstract art movie from Anurag Kashyap.  And as the case always is, the movie may win over the critiques but it fails to make a direct contact with the common man coming in theaters for entertainment. Anurag is brilliant in his own form of film-making and will definitely satisfy his fan following, which has reached a higher graph after “Dev-D”, but on the entertainment quotient movie scores quite low.

The movie puts an intense, dark, disturbing and even shocking portrayal of College Politics in Rajasthan locales but lacks the depth we had seen in “Haasil”. The sequences are all well conceived, intelligently directed and superbly shot capable of satisfying the thinking viewers in a big way. On the other hand, for the people coming in looking for the comic factor equivalent to “Dev-D” may find it disappointing on that track. This time, Anurag strictly sticks to the intense narration in the complete movie with no relief moment at all.
The story revolves around young college students who become victim of cruel local politics and it also has an angle of conspiracy being planned against the government by the Rajput families. The first half shows the rusty college campus in Rajasthan, still obsessed with brutal ragging of new students and even lady teachers. It reveals the youth election back-up sources, which include still called Maharajas, local politicians and a hidden Rajputana rebellion force. Later the emphasis shifts to how a brother uses his sister in getting his due name, respect and leadership. Anurag clearly shows how a female character can win anyone and anything in the world if she is willing to forget her dignity and limits. He represents the power of woman in the man’s world in his own unique and captivating way.
In the acting department, the best comes from Abhimanyu Singh as Ransa and Ayesha Mohan as Kiran. Ahimanyu though dies in the first hour only but has the power to light up the screen with his presence. Kiran gives an impressive performance as the girl using her feminist qualities in the best possible manner. Pankaj Jha as Jadhwal, Deepak Dobriyal as Bhaatti and Raj Singh as Dilip are effective. Kay Kay and Aditya Srivastav are first rate as always. Two characters who stay in your mind are Piyush Mishra as the mentally retarded elder brother of Kay Kay and Jesse Randhawa as the ragged teacher who has got no one to help her.
The find of the season undoubtedly is Mahi Gill in a special appearance. She was loved by everyone in “Dev-D” and here also she gives a splendid lovable act as the lover of Kay Kay. She dances and acts equally well with conviction and depth. An actress who deserves more good projects and directors like Anurag Kashayp. A good find indeed by Anurag.
Coming back to the movie, it has some worth mentioning sequences which include the one when Dilip is stripped and thrown in a room where he finds his own lady lecturer also stripped and locked. The conversation scene between Ransa and Aditya, just before he is killed and hanged in the market place. And the sequence where a policeman is shot sending all his accompanying policemen back in their jeep.
The dialogues are strong, hard but also use abusive words in an overdone manner. Many times, abuses are used where they were not needed at all. Cinematography is brilliant capturing the intense moments in the right ambience. But the script has many loopholes which could have been avoided easily keeping stress on the main plot only. There are too many stories moving in at the same time which take away the real meaning of the title “Gulaal”. The main plot of the rebellion force of Rajputana gets lost in other stories and gets attention only toward the climax.
The writer tries to point out the stress felt by all the Rajput Kings, who had to surrender their areas to the government after independence. But at the same time he also dangerously suggests another kind of fire which still may be hidden in those areas of the country. Luckily it’s only a fictional thought of the writer, quite away from the reality.
Piyush Mishra comes up with some good meaningful lyrics and composition just apt for the feel of the movie. The songs are not for everyone but they do deserve a serious listening by all music lovers and chances are that many would like the score a lot.
The movie was in the making for more than 4-5 years and several reasons were responsible for its delay. The project was recently revived, when it was taken over by ZEE Group under its ZEE Limelight Movies. The movie may find itself recognized in the New Wave Cinema but it would be difficult for the film to make huge profits for the production house.
In simple words, GULAAL is not for all and is strictly for the people who know that they want to see this out of the box kind of cinema. Viewers going to the cinema having that in mind will not be disappointed, but it’s not as engrossing as it promised to be.
Rating : 2.5 / 5

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13 Mar 2009 / Comments ( 4 )
Debojit Ghatak

I don\'t think it was a masterpiece. But its a good example of his exemplary writing skills not cinematic.

Bobby Sing

Ya, true it is not a masterpiece but is good in certain parts only.
Thanks for your comment and keep posting…

Nishant Singh Rathore

Disheartening to see that people didnt like this movie. Certainly beyond above average movie. As a viewer I\'ll rate it 5/5 for some too good to believe acting skills.
Relieve those who cant watch a movie without some around the trees song sequences and the overdose of overacting from the most established names in the industry.
And shockingly sad to see that none of the actors were nominated..Huh..no doubt..Aamir never bothers to attend those award shows.

Bobby Sing

Hi Nishant Singh,
These kind of films are neither made for every moviegoer nor for any awards.
These films are made out of a passion lived by a director who wants to convey the subject to some selected audience only.
and you would never see a wide release for such movies because the truth is that such movies see only 10-15 people in the theater in their each show.
When it comes to praise it, people do that openly at social platforms but when it comes to watch it they dont go to the theaters. And thats the hard truth of double sides psyche of audience.

Still glad to have you here and hope you would love reading about a lot more worth watching movies here in the other sections of the site.

Keep Visiting and Writing In,


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