The most appropriate term to describe Alia Bhatt’s Gangubai Kathiawadi in Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s tranquil drama about the transformation of a small-town girl from Gujarat into the Mafia Queen of Kamathipura Gangubai Kathiawadi semi-fictionalized its theme to avoid the structural limitations of a biopic by adapting a part from S Hussain Zaidi’s novel Mafia Queens of Mumbai. It approaches Gangubai’s life and profession with a targeted, in-the-moment manner.

Alia Bhatt plays the titular identity, and she gives it her all. She portrays Gangubai with a strong sense of dignity, and we witness a capable, sophisticated, and very kind woman. Ganga Harjivandas is depicted in the film as a woman with agency who is capable of fighting anyone who comes between her and her goals.

Gangubai Kathiawadi is a story of a lady who is driven into the darkest of professions, but who emerges like a phoenix, dressed in the purest of hues (White).

Alia Bhatt will undoubtedly win a slew of accolades. She gives her best performance of her career, breathing life into a historical figure as if she was made to play her and be a Sanjay Leela Bhansali protagonist. In sequences where she is intended to break free, she is a fireball, but pay attention to her in the silences. When her lover tries to get physical during a song sequence, she stops him and instructs him to caress her instead. Men have always used her physically, but none have ever shown her the attention, caring, and connection she wants. Becoming the Madam Of The Brothel, she employs her physicality, speech, and even her aura. She disproved every single sceptic.

In his little role, Vijay Raaz is the 2nd best performer in Gangubai Kathiawadi. He manages to play a eunuch without sliding into stereotype. He doesn’t go beyond with the effeminacy that we’re used to seeing in movies. With his acting, he elevates the script, and it’s a joy to see him spar with Alia.

Karim Lala is played by Ajay Devgn, who has a gangster mindset. It comes so naturally to him and contributes to the movie’s tragic tone. Seema Pahwa is deserving of this and many other roles. She proves to the entire industry that she isn’t only built for parody. This time, Jim Sarbh’s cameo is delightful and wonderful. Huma Qureshi is well-deserving of a place in the SLB cosmos. She is stunning even in a modest appearance. 

After three consecutive blockbusters, Sanjay Leela Bhansali is attempting to modify his style and develop as a filmmaker. Alia Bhatt assists him with her flawless acting and demeanour. If you don’t view it on the big screen, you’ll be missing out on a real treat.

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