Thirty seconds into the movie, you could hardly distinguish between the real and reel life Dutt. Ranbir Kapoor’s portrayal of Sanju is so immaculate and effortless that it justifies that why he is widely regarded as The Actor of this generation.
The movie, which was earlier titled DUTT, talks about all the wrongdoings that a star kid could possibly do. From doing drugs in India to smuggling them to the US, to misbehaving with a girlfriend, to not caring about his family and friends and to making connections with the underworld, Sanjay Dutt has done it all.
Raju Hirani’s Sanju has given humanly touch to the character. You start to feel for him. From believing that whatever happened to him was justified and was because of the choices he made, to just a situational outcome of the star-studded life.
To pull off something like this you need to have a skilled director like Hirani. Having worked with Sanjay Dutt in 3 out of his earlier 4 films, and crafting the fifth one about Sanjay Dutt, he fully utilized his relationship and understanding with Sanjay Dutt to put up a tight, compelling story. Full marks to Hirani on direction and editing as the 2 hours 30 minutes long movie doesn’t become a tiring affair. It is engaging through and through.
The story is supported by strong characters like Paresh Rawal as Sunil Dutt, and Vicky Kaushal as his best friend. Hirani showed a magical father-son relationship with Sunil Dutt empathizing with his son throughout the movie and giving him a support that every son needs during such a terrible phase. Other characters including Manisha Koirala as his mother Nargis Dutt, Sonam Kapoor as his girlfriend, Jim Sarabh as a drug peddler and Anushka Sharma as a biographer have significantly contributed to the film.
A special shout out to Vicky Kaushal for making a mark with his exceptional performance and for not getting overshadowed by the presence of big stars.
That’s all you need to know about the movie and the characters. But the different phases of Dutt’s life starts to unfold in a very thought-out and well-crafted way. Honestly, I found the first part of the film to be little more gripping than the second half. But overall the movie is very well-made and could be one of the finest of 2018.
Overall rating: 4/5