Gully Boy Review: Zoya Akhtar Paints A Beautiful Landscape of Dreams With A Brilliant Stroke

Rap! Honey Singh, Badshah, Raftaar, Hard Kaur are a couple of names strike our head when we hear this. And on a little higher note, if you are a fan of this genre (rap), you might be familiar with Jay-Z, Kanye West, Eminem, Drake, and so on. Despite the popularity of this ‘hatke’ style of music, how many serious efforts have been made to portray this on the silver screen? Perhaps none? Finally Zoya Akhtar, one of the braveheart film makers in B town, takes up this challenge and creates Gully Boy. So, what made her tap this genre? Has she succeeded? Above all, has she served an entertaining film to the audience? Let’s dig out.


Murad ( Ranveer) lives in a ‘Kholi’ with his family in Dharavi and doing graduation. Father (Vijay Raj) is a driver and wants his son to substitute him when he meets an accident, which see his leg in cast. However, Murad’s hearts beats for Safeena (Alia), an MBBS pursuant, and rap. He wants to make his career out of this ‘taufa’ (rap) of God as what he calls it.

He eventually finds a ‘Gully’ to his dream when he meets MC Sher (Siddhant Chaturvedi) who is an established rapper already, but lives no great fame; therefore, his adobe is also the slum in Dharavi. However, Murad starts shining as he gets along with MC and Sky (Kalki Koechlin) but his father hates it to the core and aks Murad to leave the house with his mother and younger brother. Things even get worse when a number of other obstacles await Murad; however, despite all odds, Murad finally wins a huge contest where he wins Rs 10 Lakh as prize money and meets an eminent international rapper.

Screenplay and Dialogues

Penned by the duo Reema Kagti and Zoya Akhtar, Gully Boy is inspired by the lives of two eminent rappers; Divine and Naezy and we must say, the pair deserves the standing ovation for jotting down every emotion, low and tide, aspirations, dreams, happiness, pain, etc so brilliantly that it keeps the audience hooked throw-out 2 hrs 33 minutes. The journey of Murad has been depicted in an outstanding fashion and his journey becomes each one of us journey because somewhere down the line we all have waited for ‘Apna Time Aayega’.

Dialogues by Vijay Maurya are incredible and he has used the local language of Dharavi and of the lower-middle class Muslims along with the accent with sheer brilliance. The dialogues are not only spot on but also emerge as the biggest asset of the film.


Zoya Akhtar does a phenomenal job behind the camera. She brings out the best of everyone and jots down the raw material accurately. The brilliant portrayal of a life of struggle with immense passion for something is her biggest victory as a director. Her narration is so seamless that even the abrupt end doesn’t really bother you at all because she compensate it with the end credit glimpses.


Ranveer Singh has once again proves his mettle. He looks so real and effortless that your sympathy and love picks up his hands right from the beginning. He excels in every scene and raps like seasoned rapper. Alia puts herself into the skin of Safeena remarkably and wears the ‘halkat’ accent with élan. Although, the whole drama focuses on Ranveer more but Alia excels whenever she appears on the screen. Some of her punches are so side-splitting that it brings the house down with laughter. Kalki Coechlin expands her wings well in a little room she has. Vijay Raaz is outstanding and brings out the best to portray a cruel, agitated, but an affectionate father in the end. 


All songs are written and picturized keeping the mood of the film in mind and they carry forward the story well. All the credit goes to the lyrics by Gulzar.

Why Should I Watch?

Catch this never seen before journey even if you don’t like rap and hate the get up of the rappers because this is more than just rap. It paints an unknown landscape with an exceptional stroke.

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