Sanju: Bad Decisions Make For Bad Stories

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Sanju is a biopic on Bollywood superstar Sanjay Dutt’s dramatic and controversial life. Some viewers have been impressed with Ranbir Kapoor’s acting and the touching depiction of the circumstances under which Dutt committed the mistakes that he did–including but not limited to the illegal possession of three AK-56 rifles with ammunition. But there are many who have dismissed the movie as a glorification of Dutt’s stupidity and “bad boy” character.

This post is not meant to analyse the movie but to discuss a possible counterfactual for Sanjay Dutt’s life–one in which he has no connections with the mafia. The Bollywood-Underworld nexus is a well-known phenomenon. There have been some high-profile cases where persons from the film industry have had close encounters with gangsters. For example, on January 21, 2001, Bollywood filmmaker Rakesh Roshan was shot in the arm and chest by Abu Salem’s gang members.

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