Heroine is drably monotonous, its insights are shallow, most of the characters are caricatures and the lines that they speak border on the corny. Kareena Kapoor is a complete stunner in the movie. She steals the show by delivering a stupendous performance, feel critics.
“With Bhandarkar watermarked on every single scene of the film, Heroine is highly predictable and somewhere disappointing for those who swear by his ability to reveal the unseen facts. From the feminine-traits of a designer to a back-bitching friend, from vicious women who pass the same comments to death being a turning point for the protagonist, stereotypes successfully kill the essence of this film,” writes Kanika Sikka, DNA.
“Madhur treats the theme of Heroine with extreme simplicity and unfussiness for the avid moviegoer to decipher. I am sure, the viewer would experience explicit contentment to witness the truth behind the made-up faces of the film world, the shadowy secrets that lie behind the enchanting veneer. The lifestyle, the betrayal, the promiscuousness, the inane tittle-tattle… all this and more is what is expected from a plot that covers the movie industry and it’s all there in profusion in Heroine,” feels Taran Adarsh, Bollywood Hungama.
“Multiple National-Award winning filmmaker Madhur Bhandarkar takes vicarious pleasure in giving his audience a ring-side view of various walks of life. His Chandni Bar (2001) dealt with Mumbai dance-bars; Page-3 (2005) showed the shallow side of the media and celebrity circus,” writes Meena Iyer, TOI.
“In conveying the ebbs and tides of the life of a self-obsessed, impulsive and troubled Bollywood diva, the film taps into the tropes that constitute the Bhandarkar formula. The novelty has worn off. So, all that the audience is left with is an overwhelming sense of déjà vu,” writes Saibal Chatterjee, NDTV.
“The movie does a rinse-and-repeat from here on with heartbreak, love and heartbreak again. Watch the rest of the movie for more close-ups of Kareena’s blood-shot eyes, her incessant break-downs and some really confusing blocks in the story,” writes Roshni Devi, Koimoi.com.
“Heroine is just Madhur’s unbalanced take on his heroines, with Sushmita Sen, Preity Zinta, Bipasha Basu, Priyanka Chopra and Konkona Sen Sharma, among the few who get an unjust mention. Even his first choice for ‘Heroine, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan isn’t spared with a hint that political influence can buy anyone the state’s highest honour – Padamshree,” writes Sneha May Francis, Emirates 24/7.
“On the face of it, Heroine had great scope to be developed into an interesting story. But director Madhur Bhandarkar gets confused – he wants to reveal the big bad world of Bollywood to the outsiders and tell a human story at the same time. There are lose references to real controversies – a star who edits his co-actor’s role, female actors partnering with a businessman to buy an IPL team when their careers are going downhill, a leaked MMS which brings ample publicity to a couple, a gay designer who is known to design saris and is a close friend to some top female actors, a star wife who decides which heroines his star husband will work with after a recent linkup and so on. The director entertains you by giving you a guessing game. You get busy trying to find out whether a character is based on a certain star or not. But that’s where the fun ends,” writes Suparna Thombare, Bollywood Life.
What went wrong?
“Before the interval, the film is a mess up of fast-paced events. The second half, though slow, manages to bring these events into order to lead to a predictable end,” Sikka adds.
“On the flip side, although the writing borrows from reality and has ample shock value, the writers could’ve avoided a few episodes in Mahi’s story, which seem unimportant. Besides, the track involving Ranvir Shorey and his film is stretched. Also, the writers have tried to cram too many instances/episodes in the screenplay, which only elongates the run time of the film. Moreover, the film focuses more on the lows than the highs. Had the writing depicted her stardom with the same zeal as the downfall, the impact of Mahi’s fall from grace would’ve appeared more persuasive,” says Adarsh.
“And Heroine would have been crisper had it not digressed to cover every Bollywood insider account. When the maker attempts to show mainstream cinema’s condescending attitude towards art-house films, precious screen time is lost. Mahi’s attempt to play a prostitute and say scandalous lines are clearly attempted to woo the front-benchers but the gig lacks conviction. The music is a complete let down and even the item song Halkat Jaawani fails to give the required `rise’ to proceedings,” Iyer adds.