Once Upon a Time in Mumbai: Extensive Review

By Avik, Gaea News Network
Friday, July 30, 2010


MUMBAI, INDIA (GaeaTimes.com) — “Life ho to Gangster Jaisa!”. This goes from Emraan to all his fans. Emraan Hashmi, who plays Shoib in the movie is seen relishing the lifestyle of a mafia. Mumbai indeed goes rewind in Milan Luthria’s Once upon a Time in Mumbai. The movie is a throwback to the 70s; the feel, look, costumes and the setting is of a bygone era, including the music. The film is produced by Balaji Telefilms and Popcorn Entertainment.

The movie already is in the good book of popular film critic Taran Adarsh who said,

Once Upon A Time in Mumbai is an extremely well-made film that lingers in your memory.

Sobha De tweeted,

Once Upon a Time…’is well worth your time and money.


The film takes you to an era when mumbai played host to the biggest criminals in India. The film covers the growth of the Mumbai underworld, from crime and smuggling in its early stages through its connection with international terrorism in recent times. It is based on actual happenings. It is believed to be loosely based on the lives of Haji Mastan and Dawood Ibrahim.


The film, set primarily in 1970, when Mumbai was Bambai. The movie follows the rise of Sultan (Ajay Devgan), and his eventual fall, when his protege Shoaib (Emraan Hashmi), challenges his supremacy, and usurps power to rule the murky underbelly of Mumbai.
IMDB narates the film to be,

A tale of two gangsters from the eras of past and present, whose lives enter parallel paths as they struggle to survive within Mumbai’s criminal underworld.


Who’s who!

  • Ajay Devgan ——- Sultan
  • Emraan Hashmi — Shoaib
  • Kangna Ranaut ——- Rehana
  • Prachi Desai ———– Mumtaz
  • Randeep Hooda —— Dhondu
  • Gauhar Khan ——- Item number
  • Imran Hasnee ———- Harish
  • Avtar Gill ———– Home Minister
  • Naved Aslam ———— Patrick
  • Sanjeev Wilson ——— Chandru
  • Mehul Bhojak ———— Javed
  • Arbaaz Ali Khan ——— Pathan
  • Ravi Khanwilkar ——– Vardhan


This is not the first time Ajay Devgan is doing such a role. Infact, he is really good at playing bad. Emraan, on the other hand who played small goons previously has done his homework for playing Shoib in the movie. He will be seen flaunting 6pack Abs, which he said was a necessity to add life to the character.


Kangana Ranaut has done a lot of research on her character in the film, which is apparently based on 1970s smuggler Haji Mastan’s girlfriend, Sona. To get into the skin of the character, Kangna decided to study yesteryear actresses from both Bollywood and Hollywood like Asha Parekh, Sophia Loren and Sadhana. Prachi Deasi though remains as sweet as she is, in her role of Mumtaz.

The movie has already made a melodious gate away. Pritam once again created magic, this time along with 70’s rock n rolla flavor added to it. The background score is a recreation of the Amitabh starrer Don. Milan said he had a hard time putting the right kind of tunes in the right place. Well Milan, Recreating history can never be easy. The numbers like Pee Loon, Tum Jo Aaye, and Parda have already gained immense popularity. Pee Loon warms the cockles of your heart, weaves romance all around you. Emraan and Prachi are seen sharing intimate moments in the video. Tum Jo Aye is a passionate retro romantic number filmed on Kangana and Ajay. It can be your second favorite after Pee Loon. Parda is more of a 70’s disco number, can try shaking your legs or sit back and watch the sizzling diva shake her body for you.

Musical scores:

  • Pee Loon - Mohit Chauhan
  • Tum Jo Aaye - Rahat Fateh Ali Khan & Tulsi Kumar
  • I Am In Love - Karthik
  • Parda - Sunidhi Chauhan & Rana Mazumder
  • Baaburao Mast Hai - Mika Singh
  • Tum Jo Aaye (Reprise) - Rahat Fateh Ali Khan
  • I Am In Love part 2 - K.K.
  • Pee Loon (Remix) - Mohit Chauhan
  • I Am In Love (Dance Mix) - K.K. & Dominique

The movie had its gala opening amongst controversies with Haji Mastan’s children trying to put a stay on its release. This is a feature from the house of drama queen Ektaa Kapoor so no need to think it will be a very serious flick. Those of you like mirch masala, power packed dialogues and melodrama can go in for a nice time. Emraan and Hooda have delivered excellent performance. Go and get your tickets right away.

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