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Mumtaz is a village girl whose family is killed in communal riots. She moves to Mumbai with her uncle, the only family member she has left. They are desperately poor and her uncle persuades her to become a bar girl at Chandni Bar. This is merely temporary, he promises, until he gets a job. Mumtaz is a shy girl who loathes the work, but she forces herself to dance and flirt. However, the uncle doesn't keep his promise; he lives on her earnings, drinking them away, and never gets a job. He adds one final, unforgivable crime to the list when he gets drunk and rapes her. By this time she has caught the eye of a gangster called Potiya Sawant. When she tells Potiya what her uncle did to her, Potiya decides to "defend her honor." Potiya shoots the uncle. Mumtaz, bereft of any male protection in the dangerous slums, marries Potiya. She is determined to make the best of things. She leaves the bar and stays home to raise her two children, whom she carefully protects from the world of ... Written by
Thanks to the plethora of movie and music channels, the 'non-commercial' movies of today get enough and sometimes, extra publicity. Hyderabad Blues gave some distributors the confidence to venture out with such movies.
As is obvious from the title of the movie and from the promos on TV channels, the story revolves around the central character, Mumtaz, and her life and times as a "beer-bar" dancer. Rather than just narrating one particular story, the movie tries to document the misery in the lives of such people.
Hats off to Madhur Bhandarkar for boldly doing a movie the way he wanted to do it. The movie hits you on your face even more than Satya (to which it has drawn comparisons), primarily because of the absence of commercial elements (including songs). The movie is raw yet clean.
But the other half of the credit should go to Tabu, who stakes her claim for a second National Award, with a sensitive portrayal. The only problem is that she tends to maintain a kind of laziness in all her roles. The other actors are adequate and play characters which move in and out of Mumtaz's life. Raju Singh's background score is a good supplement to the movie, though it sounds eerie at times.
This movie is strictly not for entertainment. Just go out and get the satisfaction of watching a good movie.
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