Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s BAJIRAO MASTANI is a creation of a master of opulence in every sphere; it can also be called the director’s labour of love, but for the average viewer, this also treads dangerously close to becoming a laboured experience. That it doesn’t is really a tribute to all those involved in the making of this magnum opus.
The disclaimer about this being loosely based on N S Inamdar’s book RAU and therefore absolving the creators of any wilful transgressions on the historical truths stays longer on the screen than any other such disclaimers and the viewer is to be prepared for liberal interpretations to aid Bhansali’s narrative flow. In many ways, BAJIRAO MASTANI feels like a grand opera being filmed rather than a work of cinema. The dialogues are like poetry, the song situations numerous, the settings truly grandiose and the colours are dignified. Despite all this, somewhere the story does sound far fetched and although it is supposed to cover a reasonable span of time, one feels that Bhansali takes his own sweet time in stretching scenes in a few cases and having realised that quickly hastens the pace of the narrative in a few other scenes. I was wondering whether it would have been better for this movie to be made in two parts.
As far as the performances are concerned, every one leaves his or her mark in this venture. Deepika wows everyone with her looks and emoting and despite the rather sudden transformation in her personality from being the lustful warrior to the quiet acceptance of a lover who knows before hand that she will never be given the cloak of legitimacy, she carries it with aplomb. Ranveer lives up to his macho image and the chemistry between the two builds on whatever was created in the director’s earlier production RAM LEELA. Priyanka personifies dignity in a manner few have done till now and Tanvi Azmi’s performance is superb.
Amongst the songs, the theme song picturised on Deepika in the truly grand setting looks just as graceful and stunning as Madhubala’s Pyaar Kiya To Darna Kya number in MUGHAL-E-AZAM and will be remembered for a long time to come. And I was wondering whether it was mere coincidence that both the mega budget movies released today (DILWALE, reviewed by me earlier in the day and this) have songs in which one line is common: Rang de tu mohe ! In DILWALE, it was Rang de tu mohe Gerua and in BAJIRAO MASTANI, it is Mohe rang de Laal; and although the song from DILWALE is catchier, I definitely prefer the colour Red to Gerua!!
RATING: 4 out of 5
December 19, 2015