Daddy Got A Godfather

Pop Culture

Daddy Got A Godfather

Illustration: Palak Bansal


addy is a gangster film, and yet it is not.

Daddy won’t do to Gawli, what Once Upon a Time In Mumbaai did for Haji Mastan – built him up as an aspirational hero, in spite of his reality. It’s not a docudrama, despite its narrative flowing like one. Daddy is also not a commercially gentrified version of the Bollywood gangster genre, like Raees. It isn’t meant to entertain or titillate. The film has no item numbers headlined by Sunny Leone, or glamorously shot encounters showcasing the inventive imagination of an under-tapped action-director. It consciously eschews Bollywood’s star-driven, supercilious formula overpowering the gangster genre, and offers no resolution for its eponymous lead, instead stripping bare his flawed ambiguity, and investigating his humaneness. In doing so, Daddy makes us encounter Arun Gawli, once the chief adversary of Dawood Ibrahim (referred to as Maqsood bhai), instead of being complacent about telling us about him, like every other gangster film we’ve been accustomed to.