Gangs of Wasseypur: Movie Review

Director: Anurag Kashyap

Cast: Manoj Bajpayee, Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Piyush Mishra, Reema Sen, Richa Chadda, Jaideep Ahlawat, Zeishan Quadri, Pankaj Tripathi, Jameel Khan, Pramod Phathak, Huma Qureshi, Tigmanshu Dhulia, Vineet Singh, Raj Kumar Yadav, Vipin Sharma, Satya Ananad, Yashpal Sharma, Anurita Jha
 
Synopsis: Towards the end of colonial India, Shahid Khan loots the British trains, impersonating the legendary Sultana Daku. Now outcast, Shahid becomes a worker at Ramadhir Singh’s colliery, only to spur a battle that passes on to generations. At the turn of the decade, Shahid’s son, the philandering Sardar Khan vows to get his father’s honor back, becoming the most feared man of Wasseypur. Staying true to its real life influences, the film explores this revenge saga through the socio-political dynamic in erstwhile Bihar, in the coal and scrap trade mafia of Wasseypur, through the imprudence of a place obsessed with mainstream ‘Bollywood’ cinema.
 
Review: Whenever a director makes a film about gang wars, it’s seldom welcomed with both hands by the masses. However, for a heady mixture of intelligence with crass language, flock to the theatres for Anurag Kashyap’s two-part brainchild, Gangs of Wasseypur.
 
The film looks at how the uncrowned kings of Wasseypur (a small town in district Dhanbad, now in Jharkand) came to be. In true Anurag Kashyap style this film too reads the psyche of his characters (in this case the small-time robbers who pass on hatred and revenge through the generations).
 
At the opening scene of the film, we are welcomed to Tulsi’s (Balaji Telefilms’ Kyunki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi) gharonda. Soon there is silence – all by a gunshot! Since the script is so well-woven, the history lesson was very engaging, unlike the usual cause of classroom boredom. Each character is introduced separately to the audience in order of their appearance onscreen and hence, analyzed in detail. You may also notice the uncanny resemblance this film’s story has at places to Francis Coppola’s famous crime-thriller, The Godfather – a film that most people hold as a benchmark. 
 
It is the legacy that Shahid Khan (Jaideep Ahlawat) left behind that continues through generations. Ofcourse, part one of the film tells us how Shahid Khan is executed by a man who is power-hungry and wants to continue ruling through his dishonest ways. Hatred and vengeance brings Shahid Khan’s son, Sardar Khan (Manoj Bajpai) face-to-face with one too many villains in the story until he manages to pacify the upheaval amongst the families. That the film introduces the much-loved director, Tigmanshu Dhulia (Paan Singh Tomar, Haasil) as one of the villains – Ramadhir Singh, is more than just a treat to watch. All his films so far have been amazingly made and with this one he makes his acting debut too. And what a spectacular debut. That said, all the characters were playing their part with much panache. Perfect emotions, love, hate and the jazz. Piyush Mishra fails to disappoint with his role here too. He is the older, mature person throughout the film who is aware of all that transpires with Shahid Khan and then Sardar Khan and his family eventually. The father figure role is attained with absolute perfection. Ik Bagal is a very beautiful song sung by Piyush. It transports you back in time when the only voice you heard was S.D. Burman’s in films. Most songs in the film were good, but the best in the album is Keh Ke Lunga sung by the music director, Sneha Khanwalkar and Amit Trivedi.
 
Richa Chaddha (seen earlier in Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye!) as Sardar Khan’s first wife was good in places, except when she expresses extreme emotions, the feeling just lifts off. Reema Sen will be seen after a long time on screen in the role of the wife-turned-vamp. Like a perfect thriller, you won’t know till the end who’s going to turn around and stab you in the back, for it could be one of the few people you can trust with your life.
 
Finally coming to Manoj Bajpai, well, the guy has more than once proven that he is impeccable with what he does. But here, he gave the aura of Bhiku Mhatrey, 14 years later. Settling right into the skin of the character, for a long time even after the film, he will be Sardar Khan, the Mafia and not Manoj Bajpai, the actor. After 160 mins in the movie, you will come out of the theatre feeling very strongly for him. The film has a part 2 as well, which is now greatly awaited, where Nawazuddin Siddiqui (Faizal Khan) will continue his father’s unaccomplished goal read – maqsad.
 
The film was a great watch, violent but adorable. There is a strong connection with Indian roots in the film, which explains it’s successful filming at the Cannes Film Festival. It doesn’t earn its adulations through the comic scenes or the frequent cuss words alone. The dialogues are the unseen stars of the film along with Anurag Kashyap’s direction. He proves again that film-making exists in more genres than the feel-good, lovey-dovey, dance-around-trees style. Kasam paida karne waali ki, movies are our passion and when they are superbly made, they are not just seen and forgotten. Don’t you agree?    

Verdict: Violent, gory yet adorable. Anurag Kashyap is a Wizard of Oz-some!

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10 Comments

  1. Shuja Mehdi

    June 27, 2012 at 5:25 pm

    I am not a movie critic by profession, but certainly think watching movies is a passion to me.
    Have not seen this movie yet, but I’ve been called up quite a few friends of mine, who have called this the ‘Best Bollywood Movie Ever!!!’
    That is a very strong statement to make, but when it is repeatedly made by different people, I wonder is it really true?
    Could you please comment on this, if it can be given the title of ‘Best Bollywood Movie ever’???

  2. Manjunath

    June 29, 2012 at 3:54 pm

    Not so good movie. Its very slow and boring moving though it has some double meaning dialogues in between which will make laugh and apart from that its not worth to watch with family.

  3. Kapil Singh

    June 29, 2012 at 5:04 pm

    Yes, i have been also asked by some of my friend must go to watch this movie…its best ever bollywood movie indeed. I am going to watch this movie by tomorrow….i’ll make one more comment after this…

    • Jimena

      August 12, 2012 at 9:36 am

      I’m out of league here. Too much brain power on dsipaly!

  4. GDkochar

    July 7, 2012 at 12:49 am

    Movies like these are setting new standards in Hindi cinema. Personally i am sick of main stream and actor name drive movies. Anurag Kashyap is a new age film maker and makes fresh and orignal content ,which is really inspiring.I am a big fan of his work.

    The movie was very entertaining and music was fabulous.Everything fitted at the right place and at the right time.
    This is definitely one of the best Hindi movies i have ever seen. I Can’t wait to see the second part.

  5. Nidhi Infotech

    July 15, 2012 at 8:39 pm

    I’m not a movie buzz but liked this movie of Anurag Kashyap.
    Great Direction. Awsome.

  6. Packers Movers Bangalore

    July 15, 2012 at 8:40 pm

    Great Movie. Awsome direction.

    • Tony

      August 11, 2012 at 6:28 pm

      Nice aritcle!A quote for your aritcle by Dumbledore from Harry Potter Series. It is not our abilities that show us what we truly are; it’s our choices. Disclaimer: I am not fan of Dumbledore or Harry Potter, just fan of above quote!

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