Bajirao Mastani review.
written by Souranath Banerjee
‘Cheeteh ki chaal, Baaz ki naazar aur Baji Rao ki talvar par sandeh nahi karte, kabhi bhi maat de sakti hai.’
My Ratings: 4/5.
Almost twelve years back in 2003, director Sanjay Leela Bhansali wanted to make a film Bajirao Mastani with Salman Khan and Aishwarya Rai in the lead roles. But fate had some other plans.
Now, there are rarely any Bollywood films (if any) that are so pleasing to your eyes that the story, content and characters almost get sidetracked by the sheer beauty of each and every frame.
Bajirao Mastani is one such example of cinema.
Mr.Bhansali along with his cinematographer Sudeep Chatterjee and production designers Saloni Dhatrak, Sriram Iyengar and Sujeet Sawant have managed to create stunning painting-like-shots (many of the frames in the film actually resembles classic paintings of famous Marathi painters) and have enthralled us with these great visuals through out the film.
And talking about the story of the film, (without going into the debate of how much historical authenticity it has), I would say it comes under the classic ‘doomed love story’ category, where love wins only through destruction of them who are in love!
Baji Rao Ballal Balaji Bhat, a great Maratha general of the early 1700, who though happily married and Hindu, falls in love with a charming half-muslim princess Mastani and eventually makes her his (second) wife.
But Baji Rao’s family (especially his mother and brother) are not too happy about this second marriage. So correspondingly, they humiliate Mastani and try to kill her a couple of times.
At the end, they do understand that ‘Baajirao Ne Mastani Se Mohabbat Ki Hai, Aiyashi Nahi’, but by that time it was too late!
Acting wise. superb performance by Ranveer Singh; his way of speaking Marathi, his body language as a warrior, his confident dialogue deliveries – basically he did look the part.
Even the secondary characters Tanvi Azmi (as mother), Milind Soman (as minister), Aditya Pancholi (as the rival), Vaibbhav Tatwawdi (as brother) and Mahesh Manjrekar (as Maratha King) – all were at their best.
The content is relatively simple but the presentation is creditable, a bit too loud often (specially the dialogues) but again, that’s the part of Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s filmmaking style I guess.
A clever move to put a disclaimer in the very beginning of the film which basically said that the film doesn’t claim to be faithful to any historical facts; and then only did all the fuming historians calm down and concentrate on their popcorn tub.
Don’t forget the numerous elaborately choreographed dance sequences; decent musical score by Sanchit Balhara and Sanjay Leela Bhansali himself.
Do watch it in big screen to absorb the opulence and grandeur of this film.
P.S – Bajirao Mastani is banned in Pakistan since it is regarded as ‘a historical drama that is indirectly against Islam and Muslims.’ (No idea why or what that means).