Film report: Sanju

Ishaan Agrawal


One man, many lives – Sanju lives up to the expectations its tagline builds, but it might just fall short of the saga you wanted to catch sight of.
Sanju explorers some crucial chapters of Sanjay Dutt’s controversial life mostly focusing on his relationship with his father, his inner demons, and his friend, Kamlesh. If you go in expecting a tabloid full of controversial topics uncover on the screen, it might disappoint you.
Sanju has Rajkumar Hirani’s fingerprints all over. The screenplay is neat and there is never a dull moment despite the 160-minute runtime. There are some plot holes and dialogues are sloppy at instances but then, the massive dose of entertainment lets you past that. The story undoubtedly is gripping and the narrative is quite smooth, too. This is Ranbir Kapoor’s best work yet but not Hirani’s.
Ranbir Kapoor does a phenomenal job of portraying this character. And thanks to the makeup department, he just melts into Sanjay Dutt’s image. He strikes such an uncanny resemblance to Sanjay Dutt that you often need to remind yourself of his presence. His adaptation of Baba’s mannerisms, style, nuances, and even his vocal style is praiseworthy. Manisha Koirala, Dia Mirza, Sonam Kapoor, Jim Sarbh deliver very good performances. Paresh Rawal carries Sunil Dutt’s character with a panache. Vicky Kaushal emerges as the surprise package. He is fantastic and his chemistry with Ranbir Kapoor is an icing on this cake.
Sanju follows an emotional, sympathetic tone. The thing I liked best is that Sanju does not try to clean Baba’s image. I cannot comment on its authenticity, but the liberties taken are noticeable. This film does not shy away from touching upon Sanjay’s involvement in the Mumbai blasts with AK56 rifles and RDX found in his possession but, we get to witness a toned down version. The music in the film is also nice – especially the track “Baba Bolta Hai” and “Kar Har Maidan Fateh”.
Sanju, without a doubt, is a signature Raju Hirani film – serving loads of entertainment and humor on your plate. Where it takes a hit is the audiences’ colossal expectations, which it misses out on by a hair.

Rating – ***.5

Watch the trailer here:



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