Heeramandi Trailer Review: Sanjay Leela Bhansali Puts His Dreamy Moulds At Stake To Enter The Reality Turning Mujrewaalis Into Mulkwalis - Worth The Risk Or Out On A Limb?
Heeramandi Trailer Out: Sanjay Leela Bhansali Breaks His Usual Mould Of Dreamy Tales(Photo Credit – Youtube)

What does a Sanjay Leela Bhansali film mean? A dreamy world, a dreamier story, and poetic shots. The epitome of feminine beauty, grace blended in intricately chosen words and delicately created music. But what happens when Bhansali breaks his mold? He tries to enter reality, and he decides to do this with his Netflix web series, Heeramandi.

Created by Sanjay Leela Bhansali, this web series tells the story of a courtesan mohalla that finds its residents in Manisha Koirala, Aditi Rao Hydari, Sharmin Segal, Sonakshi Singa, Richa Chaddha & Sanjeeda Sheikh.

The 3 minutes 12 seconds trailer immediately pulls you in with its magnetic charm of the courtesan galleries, dances, decked-up actresses being called Mujrewaalis and ruling the Nawabs Fardeen Khan, Adhyayan Suman, Shekhar Suman, and others who are the clients of Heeramandi: The Diamond Bazaar.

But as your eyes go wide and your brain goes easy with this dreamy world, curling up to the beautiful notes, this mold gets shattered as Bhansali dares to step out of his beautifully woven world to blend his delusional world with the reality of the freedom struggle where his women are stuck!

But guess what happens when one tries to portray a realistic tale? Not all that is real might be beautiful. Some of the real tales are ugly, horrifying, and disturbing. And when we talk about the freedom struggle of 1947, all the above boxes get ticked.

The problem with this trailer starts when Mujrewaalis turns mulkwaalis. At some point, you are reminded of Vidya Balan’s Begum Jaan, the only difference being that the world was not beautiful because their realities were not beautiful. Sanjay Leela Bhansali is loved for larger-than-life stories, dreamy tales that might never happen in such beautiful dimensions, color palettes, and, most importantly, grandeur.


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Be it Padmaavat, a disastrous tale of a fallen kingdom, or be it Bajirao Mastani, a heartbreaking tale of a lost warrior, despite being real-life stories, these films worked along with their dreamy frames and majestic setup because the stories were too old to have been witnessed in first person.

And this is where the litmus test for Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Heeramandi will commence. His beautiful and spotless courtesan world is shattered way too quickly with the 1947 freedom struggle. And while his mujrewaalis turn mulkwaalis, the snippets of the freedom struggle don’t offer much depth or hint about what Bhansali is up to.

He definitely seems to have risked it all for a hard-hitting tale with Heeramandi, but is the risk worth taking, or will he limb out? It is something that is yet to be seen.

There is a reason that beautiful frames do not go with the 1947 freedom struggle. The visuals, the depiction, and the stories are first-hand accounts. Stories that have shades of saffron and green stain the white in the Tiranga with red – the bloody red. And such stories do not get justified with poetic frames. A reason why films like Kalank and Ae Watan Mere Watan could not peak despite having a great storyline.

Hopefully Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s transition from the magnanimous and aesthetic frames to the dark walls of prison and roads filled with men and women fighting for freedom translates as beautifully as he might have pictured it in his world.


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Resting all hopes on the visionary and the magician to make his trick work.

For more such stories, stay tuned to Koimoi.

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