Direction: Ashim Ahluwalia
Cast: Arjun Rampal, Aishwarya Rajesh, Rajesh Shringarpure, Anand ingale, Nishikant Kamat
Cinematographer: Jessica Lee Gagné, Pankaj Kumar
Editor: Deepa Bhatia, Navnita Sen Datta
Genre: Biography, Crime, Drama
What is it about: This film is a political crime drama, which based on the Gangster turned Politician “Arun Gawli”, the film explores the nuances of the protagonist’s life. It’s directed by Ashim Ahluwalia.
Why it’s disappointing: This will stay put for this film.
What to watch out for: For the sake of argument, you can say it serves the usual gangster drama. Ironically every gangster goes through a similar fare in scoring something in life. And “Arun Gawli” is one such soul who at least stood for what he believed and did well for the sake of people. I’m not sure how much has been dramatized by the makers as the film poses the events from a true story. But I can very much vouch on the making, which was at its best. It had a genuine feel of a quality cinema, which once in a while we get to see. And the lead himself working on the story is something rare to find. Arjun Rampal excelled quite well in the writing part along with Ashim.
The director knew what he was getting in to and made sure to keep not only the geography but the details right. He worked on the tiniest factors making this one a commendable watch. The screenplay was poised and relaxed which breathes though the incidents and lets the audience register the characters and the happenings around it.
Arjun Rampal, was at his finest. He powers through a restrained and matured performance. Arjun brought an amazing attitude to the character and played it to its best. Couldn’t have asked for anything more than this, as he gave the best of it.
Aishwarya Rajesh as Zubeida/Asha Gawli was a debut in Bollywood, but hardly anyone would’ve noticed her newness to the language or the industry. An amazing performer, who left a strong impact on the audience.
And then there was Nishikant Kamat as Vijayakar, he did an amazing job. He gets deep in to the character and delivered a commendable performance.
The supporting cast was chosen well, and everyone did a great job. Among which few require a mention. Anand Ingale as Babu, Rajesh Shringarpure as Rama, Anupriya Goenka as Hilda, Shruti Bapna as Rani and Shrikant Yadav as Sada.
The cinematography by Jessica Lee Gagné and Pankaj Kumar was top notch and it was intensely edited by Deepa Bhatia and Navnita. The music by Sajid-Wajid was to the mood.
Verdict: Ashim Ahluwalia, was spot on with the direction and delivered a strong film which explores the nuances of the genre to its best. And it was iced with strong performances. Definitely worth a watch.