Bombay Velvet

Bombay Velvet, which starts in 1949 and ends in the 1960s, is admirably ambitious.  It’s visually sumptuous, narratively dense and the soundtrack, by Amit Trivedi, is an instant classic.  Parts of it are glorious but it’s also undeniably, a mess.The script draws upon Princeton historian Gyan Prakash’s book Mumbai Fables and journalist and author Naresh Fernandes’ writings on Mumbai’s Jazz age.  Anurag and his co-writers, which include Prakash and director Vasan Bala, layer this with references to James Cagney and American gangster films of the 1930s, film noir, films like L. A Confidential and Chinatown, which tell the backstories of cities and of course Mumbai’s own colorful history.