How Is The Movie

Panipat

Panipat Movie Review

Here is the Panipat movie review and Firstly, it’s a good watch. You won’t regret it.

I would have liked it more without the songs and the awkward dance that Kriti Sanon does.

Now I will come to specifics.

This is the story of Panipat Battle (3 ) which happened in 1759-61 between Maratha warrior Sadashiv Rao Bhau’s forces and the Afgan Invader Ahmed Shah Abdali and preceding events and the politics of it.

To describe the politics to invoke interest in this movie, the dynamics are pretty interesting, and something which is ( and was not ) not part of our school textbook history ( I wish it could have been).

Maratha empire’s span from Atak-near Afghanistan Border, going all the way to Udgir which is on the southern Border is huge and the whole machinery/system works on Marathas giving protection to small kingdoms from invaders thus keeping them under their fold but in lieu of which they had to pay tax to Maratha rulers.

So naturally, there was tension, distrust, and lack of faith as money gets involved which is paid out of coercion and not by ideological allegiance or followership.

So as a result, The Delhi ruler ( Najib Ud Daulha ) who is under Maratha ruler’s fold, manages to reach out to Afghan King Ahmad Shah Abdali and strikes a deal with him by which he creates a safe passage for Abdali to strike Delhi and then become the Badshah of India and in exchange Najib gets the protection from Abdali and also the larger pie of the earnings from the larger kingdom that would now be part of Abdali’s empire.

This requires a response from Peshwas and thus Sadashiv Rao Bhau is sent on the mission ( Mohism ) to stop Abdali and crush the revolt of Najin Ud Daulah.

The sub-plots of the story and its dynamics are pretty interesting and this is what keeps you hooked to the movie.

Ashutosh Gowarikar goes a little over-board in the Parvatibai – Sadashiv Rao Bhau angle of the story but manages to retreat just in time.

The hangover of Lagaan and Jodha Akbar is also felt many times and it is rather the result of Ashutosh’s making style and the approach and not the story’s need.

The CGI imagery is not superlative ( Like what we have seen in Troy ) but it is at par with what meets the basic qualifying criteria for such story.

The hand-to-hand combat scenes in the finale, are just too good and done with finesse and high level of physical action and armory and the rage and blood.

The good part is that the dialogues have sporadic use of Marathi by lead actors and to my surprise, the first time ever, set of Hindi actors have got the Marathi diction correct.

Arjun does not disappoint and carries the bearing and the temperament of Sadashiv Rao Bhau with ease and conviction.

Kriti Sanon looks stunning and does a good job but she is just too athletic and tall for the character she plays. And what does not fit well with her costumes ( The way her Nau waari sadi is draped ) is that, it is not in line with the times and values and standards followed. There is something amiss here, surely.

Sanjay Dutt looks menacing enough and does justice to what is being told to do by the director.

Lastly, on a lighter note, it gets highlighted by this movie, that the Maharashtrian Ladies tradition of asking their husbands मी तुमच्याबरोबर येऊ का? तुम्ही कुठे चाललात? आणी तुम्ही कधी परत येणार ? is the cause of misfortune for Maharashtrians, as in this war, Parvatibai insists and tags along Sadashiv Rao Bhau in this long mission along with her whole paraphernalia and becomes a big liability to Sadashiv Rao.

You will like the movie if you have liked Jodha Akbar of Ashutosh Gowarikar.

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© Milind Ghangrekar