One striking feature of the promos of ONCE UPON A TIME IN MUMBAAI DOBARA has been that the presentation and attire, or rather the whole package is very glitzy, glamorous and is rather colorful. It begs a question whether the world of gangsters that OUATIMD tries to portray is as glitzy and glamorous in reality? Gangsters in reality have seldom been seen in such flashy presentations, as was manifest from OUATIM where Ajay Devgn throughout the film mostly sported a white safari. There was some element of flashiness in the portrayal of Emraan Hashmi but it had an element of restraint associated with it, but in OUATIMD it is fashion, glamour and glitz all the way.
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If we look at it from the perspective of the manner in which the gangsters of the yore have been portrayed in Hollywood films, then once could argue that OUATIMD could be coming of age of gangster cinema. Hollywood has been rather lavish in the way it has portrayed the gangsters, for example in THE UNTOUCHABLES the manner in which Robert De Niro portrayed the character of gangster, or for that matter throughout the GODFATHER series, where the gangsters or the Dons have been portrayed in a rather lavish manner. It has to do with the fact that they portrayed an upper strata of the society or rather an aspiration to amalgamate with the upper strata of the society and what better way to do it than to copy the lifestyle and nuances of the upper crust of the society.
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OUATIMD also represents a phase when the gangsters after having made their mark where trying to aspire to amalgamate with the upper crust of the society and it was the world of cinema and cricket that provided them the platform to go up in the social ladder. The path of sankritisation for the gangsters who dominated the landscape of Mumbai of the times which the film portrays was attempted through cinema and cricket.
It is this aspect that Milan Luthria has tried to underline through his films and has delineated the idiom which was the dominating motif during the 90s in the world of cinema and cricket. The moot point would be, whether the audience also understands and accepts this depiction of reality.
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