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Deepa Deosthalee

Meera, thanks for your comments. All of them are valid. However, I stand by my review because it's a lot for any mainstream film to talk of women's education—in however ham-handed a manner it may do so. There's nothing logical about the film, hence no point talking about how these women funded their commune etc. But I don't see the common man going to watch a documentary on the Gulabi Gang (I watched it in any empty hall in Mumbai) whereas a film with popular stars will be seen and I'm the eternal optimist who hopes it might even provoke one or two of them to think. Sure, it's as commercial as can be, but within this space, instead of just exploiting women for gratification there's talk of their empowerment. Also, most films allot a minuscule space and bandwidth to their women characters. It gave me vicarious pleasure to watch the same treatment being meted out to men for a change… About a film's funding, it would be nice not to take money from criminals. Sadly Hindi cinema has a robust history of doing just that. Gulaab Gang isn't the first or the last to do so.

Meera

I saw Gulab Gang last week and I must say that it was very disappointing. Madhuri was the biggest disappointment. There is more to women's empowerment than bashing up men. Women need to do more about their lives than weave pink saris or weave baskets. It is also not clear how the gang funded its "commune" as you call it. I don't think so many saris of the same color would fetch that much to run it on a day today basis. But the biggest surprise ( a pleasant one at that) was Juhi. She was really good! She got the character just right and her rendering of dialogues using the dialect of the UP region was pretty good. The sweet bhartiya nari with an evil mind .. she played her part really well. It tells you that ultimately shaking your breasts to a "dhak dhak" song can only get you that far..!! One needs to evolve as an actress which Madhuri hasn't. And people who have no understanding of gender issues should not make what they think are "meaningful " films. Besides I was rather surprised to find some rather shady people and their companies associated with the film - Subroto Roy ( Sahara), Bharat Shah and the late Gulshan Kumar's T series - sare ke sare badmaash ek saath. This is called sau chuhey kha kar billi haj ko chali

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