I spent almost 20 minutes thinking of an interesting title for this post. But each one seemed like doing injustice to one aspect or the other. So, I went for the plain one – the name of the movie.

Anurag Kashyap rocks. There were some aspects of Dev D that felt odd, out of place, not quite reasoned out like rest of the movie. Like I just did not get the enlightenment of Dev there. How he realizes that he should abandon the path of self-destruction and how he manages to come back and find Chanda living happily ever after… But it was still wonderful for all the other things. For the brashness of its characters, for its take on the old story in current times, for its dialogs, actions and actings!

Then comes Gulaal… As usual, a full review is not my cup of tea. So, here are a few observations <potential of spoilers>

  • Its not just the brashness of the characters, but also a brashness in the way story is written and told. It is like “This is how things are. You feel uncomfortable? You find it coarse? You’d rather have it slightly different? So be it. We aren’t going to change things due to that. Take it or leave it.”
  • You need some sense of history and appreciation of Hindi poetry to be able to fully enjoy the movie.
  • All the time the use of poetry and music gives a street-playish effort. After coming back, I found that the lyricist cum composer indeed has that kind of background.
  • “जैसे दूर देश के टावर में घुस जाए रे एरोप्लेन” – It is a wonderfully folklorish expression. In this world of direct information, being able to think of such expression that gives you the information and yet has a feel of it being distant is not easy. I am hooked on to it.
  • Acting is brilliant for everyone.
  • Too bad it won’t do well 😦 You know it while watching and enjoying it.
  • This is one of those movies which make bollywood come of age! Not Slumdog Millionaires of the world.
  • I am going to watch this movie again, and also the older movies of Anurag Kashyap which I have missed out on.

May the good entertainers flourish in bollywood.

This entry was posted in Movies by Jaya. Bookmark the permalink.

About Jaya

Jaya Jha is an entrepreneur, a techie, a writer and a poet. She was born and brought up in various towns of Bihar and Jharkhand. A graduate of IIT Kanpur and IIM Lucknow, she realized early on that the corporate world was not her cup of tea. In 2008, she started, one of the first print-on-demand publishing platform in India. She currently lives in Bangalore and divides her time between writing and working on her company's latest product InstaScribe ( with a vision to make it the best e-book creation tool. Blog: Twitter: @jayajha Facebook:

9 thoughts on “Gulaal

  1. Well said, I completely agree with the Hindi poetry point.
    Piytush Misra is a brilliant artist, his role in Maqbool is a must watch, if you haven’t seen it yet.
    Waiting for the DVD to be released, cant wait to have a personal copy of this masterpiece

  2. Have you watched Haasil, first half of the movie is deeply inspired by Haasil, second half the director tries to bring things together and he fails miserably.
    Second half is too bore. Piyush Mishra and “Ransa” are the only good things in the movie.

    This is a good movie, no doubt about that, but not good enough for five star or four star ratings.

    • I just lost a couple hours (even after forwarding the songs!) of my life to this comment! There is no comparison in the competence level in anything – script, acting, lyrics, music – between these two movies. I loved Gulaal and thought maybe Haasil was a neglected gem somehow and it began deceptively well but soon enough I realized it deserved remaining unknown!

  3. Totally agree! This is once of the best movies came out from Bollywood in a long time. I loved the characterization in this movie – all the characters are defined very well that you almost feel like you know them personally, you feel their pain, sorrows, and joys. And none of the character is defined purely in black and white. They all have shades of gray. (That’s how people actually are, in real life. Vices and virtues are not mutually exclusive.)

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