Switch on any movie channel today and chances are you will find a movie from the eighties or the nineties running. If its an action or a revenge film, it could have a plot like this: A upright man takes on a very powerful man. The man dies, and then his son takes revenge. This plot was what is considered to be a typical masala plot and was the platform for many a memorable scenes – that finally turned cliché. So, Karan Anshuman gives an ode to the cinema of yore with Mirzapur, that has all the ingredients of a masala flick, but is propelled further by some great performances and a nuanced script.
Kaleen Bhaiya is the don of Mirzapur, a fictional city. He owns the gun trade and therefore everything. His son, Munna, is a trigger-happy son, who wants to become the don much earlier than he is supposed to. One day, in a fit of rage, Munna shoots the groom in a marriage procession and a lawyer decides to fight the case. Now, as is wont to happen, the lawyer has two sons – one strong and another who’s very intelligent. The rest of the story, you have seen it in every Bollywood film ever. So, what makes Mirzapur so different?
Also Watch | Mirzapur teaser introduces us to Kaleen Bhaiya
Since the past year, several crime based web series have made their way to the streaming platforms. This is somewhat like the nineties in Bollywood, when after Satya every director wanted to make a crime opus. It’s a different matter that the directors in the streaming world cover it up as a small town story, but the concept is the same.
What’s wow: Gurmeet Singh’s direction is what takes the series miles away from any of the Bollywood films that we have seen. The director has a penchant for framing the story with precision and coming with perfect frames. He succeeds in capturing the various nuances, that makes the story intimate. That he’s blessed with a caste of some of the finest actors around is another matter. Pankaj Tripathi, as Kaleen Bhaiya has some of the finest sarcastic lines. Divyendu Sharma, as the hot headed son has some of the most blood-boiling sequences. Ali Zafar emotes with his eyes more than anything else and Vikrant Massey has just started gearing up in the first three episodes that were screened at the MAMI film festival
What’s Blah: This could be too early to say, but at least in the first three episodes, the women don’t have much to do, like in the early films of Bollywood. Here’s hoping Anshuman breaks that mould as well.
Parting Shot: Mirzapur looks promising. With the old school script, it’s a treat for the retro lovers.
Cast and Crew
Cast: Pankaj Tripathi, Ali Fazal, Vikrant Massey, Divyendu Sharma, Kulbhushan Kharbanda, Rasika Duggal, Shriya Pilgaonkar
Directed By : Gurmeet Singh
Mirzapur will soon stream on Amazon Prime Video