Sonchiriya Reviews (Top Critics)
By Umesh Punwani (4/5)

The universe of Sonchiriya consists of two kinds of people, dacoits and coppers. The gang of dacoits is led by Man Singh (Manoj Bajpayee) and he's haunted by the ghosts of his past. The next aspiring leaders of the gang, Lakhan (Sushant Singh Rajput) and Vakil (Ranvir Shorey) make sure to protect their team from the police in a loot executed by Man Singh. When the things go south, the gang finds their way out from the city into the deep ravines.

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By Anupama Chopra (3/5)

Baaghi apna bhagya khud hi banata hai. This dialogue isn't from Sonchiriya. It's from the iconic Chambal film - Bandit Queen. It's apt because in Sonchiriya also, a ragtag team of doomed dakus try to create their own destiny. But the toxic fusion of caste, violence and jungle law ensures that eventually, everyone bites the dust. Of which there is plenty in this stunning, arid land. For miles, all you see are the merciless ravines. Sonchiriya begins with the sound of flies buzzing and then we get a close-up of the carcass they are hovering on.

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Taran Adarsh
By Taran Adarsh (3.5/5)

One Word Review... SonChiriya: GRIPPING! Very well-made film that caters to a niche audience... You need to have a strong stomach to absorb SonChiriya... Violent, disturbing, shocking, with a horrifying twist... Fantastic performances by all.

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By Devesh Sharma (3.5/5)

Set in the '70s during the Emergency era, Sonchiriya is a story based in Chambal, which has long been the favourite playing field of directors wanting to channel their inner Sergio Leone and whip up a hardcore Western. Maan Singh (Manoj Bajpayee), is the leader of a merry band of dacoits, only they call themselves baaghi (rebel). Their rebellion exists at an existential level, as more often than not they are men running away from themselves, from their circumstances.

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By MAYUR SANAP (3.5/5)

Sonchiriya is by far the most ambitious work for director Abhishek Chaubey for the various reasons. Films about caste-divide, patriarchy are rare because we are guilty of hiding the shameful aspects of our society, and in that case Sonchiriya hits like a sledgehammer. It is the seminal film about social ills prevalent in society today that Bollywood usually fears to tackle. Sonchiriya tells an irresistibly powerful and nuanced story, in a way that does not shirk the horror. And that works as the biggest USP of this film.

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By Urmimala Banerjee (2.5/5)

Set in Chambal in the 1970s, Sonchiriya is the tale of Sardar Maan Singh (Manoj Bajpayee) and his gang. They are a team of God-fearing Baaghis (rebels) who believe in their dharma. But what exactly is that dharma is a question that causes immense mental and emotional turmoil to all. The film directed by Abhishek Chaubey stars Sushant Singh Rajput and Bhumi Pednekar in lead roles.

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By Meena Iyer (3/5)

Set in the Chambal Valley during 1975, the story revolves around a gang of dacoits led by Maan Singh (Manoj Bajpayee). Lakhna (Sushant Singh Rajput) is the closest and most dependable member of his gang while Vakil Singh (Ranvir Shorey) is his ally. Policeman Virender Gujjar (Ashutosh Rana) is on their trail and has a personal vendetta against them.

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By Bollywood Hungama (3/5)

SONCHIRIYA is the story of a group of rebels in Chambal. The year is 1975. The Prime Minister, Indira Gandhi, has declared Emergency in the country. Man Singh (Manoj Bajpayee) meanwhile leads a gang in Chambal, a region that more or less is lawless. Vakil Singh (Ranvir Shorey) and Lakhna (Sushant Singh Rajput) are important members of this gang. Man Singh is in need of money to procure new arms. Based on a tip from Lacchu (Jaspal Sharma), he and his men descend to Brahmpuri village.

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The Hindu
By Namrata Joshi

No two films could be as different from each other as Madhu C. Narayanan's Kumbalangi Nights and Abhishek Chaubey's Sonchiriya. One set in the Kerala of today, other in the 70s Chambal where gangs of dacoits are fighting among themselves, even while taking on the cops. Yet they stand on a similar ground when it comes to their women. In Narayanan's film the female characters are on the fringes of the narrative, in Chaubey's there are barely any women visible in the entire scenario.

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By Vishal Verma (4/5)

Set during the time of emergency in India, SONCHIRIYA is a story of a gang of rebels/bandits headed by Maan Singh (Manoj Bajpayee). His gang members include Vakil Singh (Ranvir Shorey), Lakhna (Sushant Singh Rajput), Bhoora (Mahesh Balraj), Ram Diwakar (Natthi), Mukesh Gour (Sheetla), and Abhimanu Arun (Balak Ram). Police officer Virender Singh Gujjar (Ashutosh Rana) has taken a pledge to wipe the bandits from Chambal forever.

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By Sukanya Verma (4/5)

In Hindi cinema's grossly glamorised portrayals, dakuS are either rifle-totting, horse-riding Robin Hoods dispensing justice or brutish plunderers going after wealth and women. That they could be damaged individuals bound by a code whose skewed morality and dangerous demands are gently corroding their souls is what makes Abhishek Chaubey's Sonchiriya one of the most fascinating takes on the subject.

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The Times Of India
By Renuka Vyavahare (3.5/5)

You can run away from people but how do you escape yourself? You can silence the detractors but how do you silence your conscience? Under its rugged exterior, Sonchiriya is a spiritual puzzle on redemption, remorse and salvation, backed by stellar performances, captivating cinematography and provocative dialogue.

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The Indian Express
By Shubhra Gupta (2/5)

When Bandit Queen came out in 1996, it turned all the elements of the Bollywood 'daaku' movie on its head. Director Shekhar Kapur's bandits did not sport dramatic black kurtas and crimson 'tilaks'. They did not spout florid dialogue, sprinkled with lots of Urdu. These 'dacaits' swore fluently, their curses had the crude flavor of the place. Their cruelty felt ingrained.

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By Nandini Ramnath (3/5)

Abhishek Chaubey's movie about an imploding gang of dacoits in the Chambal region is intentionally messy, unfortunately unwieldy and undeniably ambitious. The 1970s-set Sonchiriya is an elegy in the mould of Sam Peckinpah's films to an era of men bound by a code of honour and working beyond the confines of conventional law.

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By Rohit Vats (3.5/5)

When after its signature tune the national news channel announces the declaration of emergency on radio, a group of bandits enters a village in the ravines of Chambal. The pack of the chief warns everybody of dire consequences if they don't cooperate but little does he know that flying bullets are far less deadly than the haunting images from his bloody past.

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By Anna M.M. Vetticad (4/5)

In a film filled with more movement than conversations, words are used sparingly, but when they come they are on point. Women too are present in limited numbers, but the ones we encounter are prime movers in the battles being chronicled here. Writer-director Abhishek Chaubey's Sonchiriya is a lyrical account of a gang of dacoits wandering the Chambal ravines, some of them anxious for a way out.

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Hindustan Times
By Raja Sen (3/5)

In Sonchiriya, a policeman and a young boy discuss how inaccurately dacoits are portrayed in Hindi cinema. "Imagine," says the boy sitting outside a rundown little theatre, "this film shows them on horses!" The very idea is laughable to them, even though our cinema, drunk on Westerns, persisted with anachronistic equine imagery throughout - particularly in the 60s and 70s, when daku movies ruled the roost.

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By Saibal Chatterjee (3.5/5)

Director and co-writer Abhishek Chaubey, working with a superb screenplay by Sudip Sharma and aided by first-rate camerawork (Anuj Rakesh Dhawan), editing (Meghna Sen), sound design and background score (Bendict Taylor and Naren Chandavarkar), crafts a disturbing, unvarnished cinematic portrait of violence and its repercussions in Sonchiriya, an immersive dacoit drama set in the harsh, dusty ravines of Chambal in the 1970s. The film completely upends the conventions of the genre.

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