‘Mumbaikar’: Cast & Crew
Director: Santosh Sivan
Cast: Vikrant Massey, Vijay Sethupathi, Tanya Maniktala, Hridhu Haroon, Sanjay Mishra, Ranvir Shorey, Sachin Khedekar
Available On: JioCinema
Duration: 2 Hours 2 Minutes
The story is based on the life of people in Mumbai which includes their happiness, drama, fun, and romance which interlink their lives. Four different stories intertwine with each other on a random day in Mumbai. Will all four different stories have a happy ending? Or will they be left hanging? Well, you’ll have to watch this film based on the chaos theory to find out.
Thank God that ‘Farzi’ came before this and it will remain Vijay Sethupathii’s first project in Hindi, otherwise, this is simply a gross injustice to his immense talent. His character starts off with a quirky sense of humour which suits Sethupathi so very much. However, despite his immense efforts, there is not too much meat in the character so as to uplift this to the desired level. Sethupathi manages to bring some humour to the story but there was hardly any depth to the character and it was so monotone that you’re left wondering ‘Why Oh God, why did Vijay Sethupathi have to do this?’
Vikrant Massey as well starts off nicely, but even his performance is nothing out of the ordinary. It’s so run-of-the-mill that you feel as if you’ve seen him in such characters quite a number of times in the past. There is no character arc and his performance looks so flat.
Tanya Maniktala did a stellar act in ‘The Suitable Boy’ and lastly in ‘Tooth Fairy’, but here she is just reduced to just a pretty face and nothing else.
Sanjay Mishra is barely there. His role could have been done by any other junior artiste as the character didn’t have anything to offer at all.
Ranvir Shorey as a dreaded gangster is the only good performance, even though his act is short. The villainous streak that he brings out makes you want to see the character more onscreen. Shorey’s selection of characters is what makes him stand out. He has been delivering performances one after the other and all the characters have been so uniquely different from one another.
Sachin Khedekar also has been doled out a character that’s too small to justify his stature. However, he does manage to give it his own spin and make it feel more authentic and real.
Hridhu Haroon's performance is powerful. He shows his talent and why is one of the most talked about young actors in today's times. His character may be small, but he manages to showcase his talent even in that. In the coming years, he is definitely an actor to look out for.
‘Mumbaikar’: Script, Direction & Technical Aspects
Himanshu Singh, Aradhana Sah and Amit Joshi’s writing is good. However, what’s not that great is that the story in itself is quite dated. These types of chaotic city life stories used to be the staple of the 2000s. But looking at it now just makes it feel out-of-date. Lokesh Kanagaraj’s story for the original film ‘Maanagaram’ also suffered from the same issue, but even in 2017, it was still closer to the 2000s. Now, in 2023, the story is just too obvious and you know almost all the twists and turns. You know how one character will miss the other character in just a fraction of second, and you know how all these characters having different storylines will eventually end up meeting in the climax. There is hardly any element of surprise.
Talking of Santosh Sivan’s direction, this style of storytelling isn’t in fashion anymore. Anthologies like ‘Modern Love’ or ‘Ludo’ have already taken the game ahead and shown how different storylines can be shown with everything culminating at the end. Sivan’s direction in ‘Mumbaikar’ doesn’t have even a bit of the spunk and intrigue that he is usually known for. It’s just that the story revolves around the theory of chaos with things falling in place at the end.
As Santosh Sivan already has said in his interviews that he shot ‘Mumbaikar’ in pretty much the same locales as he shot Aamir Khan’s ‘Raakh’ back in 1989, therefore the locales still have that nostalgic feeling. The cinematography is pretty much the best thing about ‘Mumbaikar’ because it gives you a different perspective on the hustling-bustling city.
Dilip Damodar’s editing is decent. There are a few jump cuts here and there, but overall the presentation is kept crisp. Staying true to the story rather than going into unnecessary backstories makes the film come out even better. That’s a good call.
The music by Yug Bhusal, Prashant Pillai and Ram Surendar and the background score by Salil Amrute don’t have anything unique to offer. They are pretty run-of-the-mill and don’t give you that thrill that’s usually associated with such chaos theory stories.
‘Mumbaikar’: Can Kids Watch It?
‘Mumbaikar’ is an outdated story. Had Santosh Sivan tried to at least show that the story is set 10 years or 20 years back, it would have still made sense. However, in today’s times, such stories don’t exist and it feels entirely dated. Stellar actors like Vijay Sethupathi, Sanjay Mishra and Vikrant Massey have been wasted completely. If you’ve nothing better to watch this weekend, then also Avoid this. I am going with 1 star.