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SANJU is a masterfully created biopic!

This complex story of a misguided star-kid is narrated with such ease by the master filmmaker Hirani, and played immaculately by the absolutely mind-blowing Ranbir Kapoor, making it arguably the most well-rounded biopic to have ever come out of Bollywood. Blending humour, emotions and drama in adequate doses, this one’s not to be missed. Highly recommended!

Few lives in our times are as dramatic and enigmatic as the saga of Sanjay Dutt. Coming from a family of cinema legends, he himself became a film star, and then saw dizzying heights and darkest depths, adulation of diehard fans, unending battles with various addictions, brushes with the underworld, prison terms, loss of loved ones, and the haunting speculation that he might or might not be a terrorist. All this and more is narrated in this Raju Hirani film.

SANJU’s strength lies in the fact that it is hilarious yet heart-breaking. Keenly exploring the man's battle against his own self and the formidable external forces trying to crush him, SANJU depicts his journey through everything that life can throw at him. Co-Writer/Director Hirani’s forte is his humour, which he holds onto strongly, thereby making his product consistently engaging. Hirani turns the whole genre of a biopic on its head, with such an amazingly funny undertone, that even the most disturbing bits seem to pass through with ease. But this time around, he does not hold back on the bolder depictions, and moves away from his clean, conventional entertainers, to make this biography grittier.

At the core though, this film is essentially a touching tale of father-son relationship which is rendered with extreme sensitivity by the makers. There are moments which will leave you teary-eyed, no matter how insensate you are. Yes there are bits which are dramatized for effect, but that’s just some liberty that you love to allow a genius like Hirani. Totally missing from his story are the chapters of his marriages with Richa Sharma and Rhiya Pillai. But when you find that the film runs for over 160 minutes, you realize that the editor in Raju Hirani has rightly chosen to pick up the more important portions of his life.

While narrating the story, Hirani (in his inimitable non-preachy style) takes pot-shots at the insensitively business-driven news media, and he does an excellent job with it. The film also pays tribute to the legendary Bollywood lyricists, who have penned down the most propelling songs over the last century, shaping our lives in their own way. Hirani also skilfully sheds light upon the ill-effects of drugs, thereby illuminating the upcoming youth of our country in the course. The music seamlessly blends with the narrative, and visually, the film excels.

And now, coming to the man who made it all possible with his unmatched charm and an unforeseen abundance of talent – Ranbir Kapoor. His radiance is such that you can’t help but find yourself awestruck. He is undoubtedly the most gifted actor of our country today and as SANJU, he just sweeps you off your feet. Right from the first frame, he’s flawless and accurate with his depiction. The finer nuances that most people don’t even realize, have been perfected by this man, making his performance an experience to be cherished by each viewer. Such is his power and prowess, that even his biggest critics will fall in love with him by the end of this film. Take a bow Ranbir Kapoor, you’re truly par excellence. Vicky Kaushal is the other shining star in this film. He takes a huge leap forward as an actor, and this amazing performance of his will definitely give a huge boost to his career. Paresh Rawal too gives a memorable performance. Playing Sunil Dutt, he portrays the role of an apprehensive father with great finesse. Manisha Koirala (playing Nargis), Anushka Sharma, Sonam Kapoor, Dia Mirza, Boman Irani, Jim Sarbh, among others, do a great job.

To sum up, SANJU is a film that has an enlightening message for everyone and that too in the most entertaining manner possible. The makers of SANJU say that some true stories leave you thinking “did this really happen?" and that this is one such unbelievable story that happens to be true. I totally agree with them. The film cleans up the image of Sanjay Dutt, and leaves you mesmerized with the heights that it achieves in the course. Go for it!

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