gully boy movie review

Gully Boy movie director: Zoya Akhtar

Gully Boy movie cast: Ranveer Singh, Alia Bhatt and Siddhant Chaturvedi, Vijay Raaz

Gully Boy movie review star rating: 3/5 three stars on five

As I write this Gully Boy movie review the anthem still rings out loud in my ear #ApnaTimeAayega. This Zoya Akhtar directed film  is a tribute to the rappers who rise every morning  from the  gully’s of slum Mumbai  with a dream in their eyes and a determination to make it large.

With Gully Boy Akhtar has followed her camera into the dark and dingy ill-lit narrow streets of Mumbai to bring out the raw emotions of anger frustration and longing of the protagonist who fights a war within as much as he struggles in a world that is unforgiving. it is the battle of the star within  and the emotion of someone who has to make a choice of being bread earner over rapper that makes this a supremely believable and relatable tale.

Gully Boy is the story of a young college going boy Murad played by Ranveer Singh. His life and his love are twofold. One is  Safeena his med student brash girlfriend  Alia Bhatt and the other is his dream to be a rapper in his own right. His rap journey is shared by Sher, a rapper played by Siddhant Chaturvedi. Playing salesman by day family man and rapper boy thereafter is frustrating and the expression of this pent up frustration is channelled by Ranveer into his music. This journey is very well filmed by Zoya Akhtar and makes for an interesting watch.  With Gully Boy Zoya maps  Murad’s journey from the streets of Mumbai’s largest slum Dharavi to open mic stages that are the platform for budding rappers and finally to becoming a star.

What I really like that right to the end Zoya refrains from turning Murad into a star. He does not become thick gold chain lased rich rapper overnight but rather struggles every day to move up the rapper chain one day at a time. That journey kept me engrossed

With Gully boy we see  Ranveer Singh bring to the fore a character unlike any he has played before. His  usual all guns blazing energy filled boy in the bounce is not there instead it has been replaced by a more gentle yet gutsy almost grown up one that is as  responsible as he can be rash   the fire is in the belly the desire is in the kohl-rimmed eyes and the direction is clear to rap his way to freedom from the grey life he leads. This restrained Ranveer is brilliant. Gully boy is his moment yet again if I may say.

And you know what not for one moment during the film am I led to believe he’s acting. He loves  rap as a genre and is passional  about rap at a personal level and its showing on the screen.

Alia Bhatt may be in a shadow when it comes to belting out the rap but this Alia’s hijab-wearing totally fearless rebel too shines through in this film when music is wrapped around her. She gives sanity to the aggression in Ranveer’s character the perfect delicate foil. She too gets her moments in the sun and to that end, Zoya has struck a very good balance in Gully boy.  She has given every character in the film his or her space.

On the flip side in this attempt to give all things their space Zoya errs as well sometimes giving too much space to some elements but then again that is forgivable when you are painting on a canvas like this.

Music certainly is at the base of this film, after all, it is as much or more a musical as it is a love story.  The anthems like Apna Time Aayaga certainly ring in your ears long after the final credits.

Yes, this Bollywood drama plays to the audience but not completely. It tells the story as well and that is what makes it such a good wholesome film

I will give the Gully Boy movie review a star rating of 3/5 three stars out of five



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