‘The only red flag in Heart of Stone’: Alia Bhatt’s Hollywood debut leaves fans unimpressed


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Alia Bhatt, the Bollywood star, marked her Hollywood debut this weekend in the Netflix spy film, Heart of Stone. Starring alongside popular names like Gal Gadot and Jamie Dornan, Bhatt plays the antagonistic Keya Dhawan, an agent of The Charter that works against Gadot’s character, Rachel Stone. 

While her very maiden Western film, the Gangubai Kathiawadi star seems to experiment with other firsts; acting in her first action movie all while playing a supporting role rather than the usual protagonist she is seen to embody in Bollywood. As Bhatt’s thriller acquires 33 million views during its initial three days of release, Twitter reactions evidently do not appear too impressed with the 30-year-old’s talent.

Users express their distaste for the Student of the Year actor’s abilities to play a young hacking agent and believe that she is better suited to the world of glitz and glamour in Bollywood. Venting on the platform, some believe that Bhatt’s acting style remains too Bollywood-esque for the Hollywood action genre:

While many conveyed feelings of disappointment, some users were tickled by the prospect and took to social media to make jokes:

However, other users felt that it was not the actor’s shortcomings that made her contribution pitiful. One Twitter user voiced their disappointment with the quality of the film itself, pointing towards a poorly written role for who they believed possessed a commendable talent that could’ve been put to use:

It is vital to acknowledge that reactions towards the film and the Darlings star’s acting were not all bad. While many heavily criticised her portrayal of Dhawan in the story, others felt it more important to look at the bigger picture. Ultimately, Bhatt embodies a move towards diversity in classically white Hollywood. As a South Asian actor that may have excelled in the Indian movie genre, her debut in Western films had her fans excited about the prospect as they voiced admiration in support of her.

Tweets uplifting her performance included users referring to her acting abilities as “brilliant” “versatile,” and “undeniable.”

While many may have ridiculed her ability to play a convincing 22-year-old agent, others hailed her act as what they believed was an unsurprising feat.

While Heart of Stone has largely been getting a mixed response in the Twitterverse, the Rocky Aur Rani Kii Prem Kahaani actor has been making headlines for her other role in the recently released Indian feature as well. Her role as Rani, alongside Ranveer Singh, has entrapped traditional Bollywood fans with a new addition to the list of comfort watches of the genre.

Her performance in this film has been all the rage, grabbing audiences not just for it’s fun loving story but also for its upbeat music and dance sequences. However, we suppose Bhatt’s long-term impact on the international stage still remains to be seen.

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