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Heroine – movie review

The story behind stardom in Bollywood


Heroine is a bold, glamorous film with shocking, scandalous and manipulative ‘behind-the-scenes account’ of the reality behind the mask of glitz and glamour that our film stars inhabit. (Heroine – movie review)

The film is based on the life and times of a superstar heroine from the dream factory we call ‘Bollywood’. It is not based on the life of any particular yesteryear divas Madhubala or Parveen Babi or any others. It is a contemporary film which reveals the underbelly of the Bollywood film industry and its well-kept secrets.

Heroine features Kareena Kapoor as Mahi Arora – the protagonist along with actors Arjun Rampal, Shahana Goswami, Divya Dutta and others.

Mahi Arora’s character is of a “bipolar and schizophrenic” female as Kareena mentioned in her latest interviews.

Mahi is having an affair with reigning superstar Aryan Khanna (Arjun Rampal) who is yet to divorce his wife. Aryan has promised to marry her, once his divorce comes through. Aryan’s character has grey shades which create twists and turns in Mahi’s life.

Fed up of Aryan’s procrastination, Mahi feels abandoned and then she finds happiness with Angad Paul’s company. Mahi’s image consultant advises her to get closer to Angad Paul (Randeep Hooda) who is the vice caption of Indian cricket team.

Now Angad is in true love with her and wants to get engaged to Mahi. Mahi has career on her mind and then on the story is directionless.

A bold dialogue in this film is when Kareena Kapoor addresses a press conference: “If a heroine buys a car, (the press would label it as)  it’s gifted to her by a businessman. If she buys a diamond ring, she is getting engaged. If she goes to LA (Los Angeles), she’s getting plastic surgery done and, god forbid, if she goes toDubai, the Indian press creates  her rate card.”

It has the popular item number “Halkat Jawani”, sung by Sunidhi Chauhan and sensually picturized on Kareena Kapoor who dances raunchily while its played at

Mahi’s close friend is shown as a bi-sexual and the dress designer has to be a gay. How crude! It lacks the shocking elements usually expected in Madhur Bhandarkar’s film. Kareena Kapoor glides through the glam sequences and does enact a better performance as a loner when she is abandoned by Arjun Rampal, and those moments of insecurity in her career. She is first-rate.

There are good performances from Randeep Hooda, Rakesh Bapat, Shahana Goswami, Divya Dutta, Helen, Shillpi Sharma, Mugdha Godse and Lillete Dubey.

With an impressive first half, where most of the characters are sketched around prominent Bollywood personalities and their affairs with sportsmen, industrialists and politicians, the second half is filled with excessive melodrama.

Bhandarkar succeeds in showing the incredible highs of fame & the lonely depths of failure in Bollywood.


Kareena Kapoor – Mahie Arora
Arjun Rampal – Aryan Khanna
Randeep Hooda – Angad Paul (Cricketer)
Pooja Chopra – Shaheen Khan
Pallavi Sharda – Gayatri Reddy
Shahana Goswami – Promita (Bengali film Actress)
Divya Dutta – Pallavi Narayan (Publicist)
Mugdha Godse – Rhea Mehra
Ranvir Shorey – Bengali Filmmaker (Eccentric film director)
Shilpi Sharma – Isha (Aryan’s Wife)
Helen – Shagufta Rizwi (Yesteryears top heroine)
Govind Namdev – Rashid Bhai (Mahie’s Secretary)
Sanjay Suri – Abbas Khan
Rashmi Nigam – Zara Khan
Achint Kaur – Dr. Tanvi Verma (Mahie’s psychiatric doctor)
Lilette Dubey – Mahi’s Mother
Manoj Tyagi – Producer
Rakesh Bapat – Sameer Khan
Dilnaaz Irani – Journalist
Girish Oak – Minister
Sabina Sheema – Sheena Bhatia
Harsh Chhaya – Producer
Harish Shetty – PR
Imran Khan 1 – Costume Designer
Kanika Dhillon
Bikramjeet Kanwarpal
Manish Raisinghani
Puneet Tejwani
Areesz Gandhi

Credits & Crew:

Banner- Utv Motion Pictures, Bhandarkar Entertainment
Producers – Ronnie Screwvala, Madhur Bhandarkar, Siddharth Roy Kapur
Director – Madhur Bhandarkar
Story Writers – Madhur Bhandarkar, Anuradha Tiwari, Manoj Tyagi
Background Music – Salim Merchant, Sulaiman Merchant
Choreographers – Ganesh Acharya, Remo DSouza, Jasmin Oza
Costume Designers – Manish Malhotra, Niharika Khan, Shefalina
Co Producers – Amar Butala, Sanjay Mehta
Music Directors – Salim Merchant. Sulaiman Merchant
Lyricist – Sanjay Chhel, Irfan Siddique, Amitabh Bhattacharya, Neelesh Misra, Niranjan Iyengar
Editor – Devendra Murdeshwar
Cinematography – Mahesh Limaye
Screenplay – Madhur Bhandarkar, Anuradha Tiwari, Manoj Tyagi, Niranjan Iyengar
Dialogues- Niranjan Iyengar
Heroine – movie review

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