January 25, 2018
Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s magnum opus Padmaavat is based on Malik Muhammad Jayasi’s epic poem Padmavat. So, a disclaimer right at the start of the film rests the case, putting all the allegations and accusations to the burner.
Most of Bhansali films take into a larger-than-life world where his characters rule the screen space. The grandeur of his sets is a small indicator of the filmmaker’s vision. His canvas is huge and he expects his audience to witness this visual treat with a likewise mindset.
Coming to his Padmaavat, well, the basic story is known to all by now. History repeats itself but this time to leave the viewers speechless.
The Rajputana Pride is brilliantly acted by Shahid Kapoor, who plays Maharawal Ratan Singh. His dialogues beautifully articulate the valour of being a Mewadi Rajput.
He falls in love with a gorgeous Singhali princess named Padmavati, here essayed by Deepika Padukone. She portrays an equally brave and courageous Kshatriyani who prefers to envelop herself in the fire than succumb to a ruthless Khilji.
Their happiness is short-lived as Rajputana Maha Guru named Raghav Chetan is punished for watching the royal couple while they were sharing an intimate moment. Rani Padmavati urges the Ratan Singh to send the Maha Guru away from their mitti (motherland) and that would be his biggest moment.
However, as fate would have it, the Maha Guru finds his way into the Khilji regime. Ranveer Singh has given his best shot as a barbaric ruler Alauddin Khilji. He is so brutal that he kills his own uncle (Raza Murad) for power.
Khilji falls for Padmavati and his urge to meet her weaves an entire epic together. Jim Sarbh’s act as Malik Gafur, who is Khilji’s slave is impressive.
The background score is worth remembering. The costumes and cinematography applause-worthy. But the only issue is the problem of continuity and abrupt cuts in editing.
Khilji perhaps is one character who will not leave you even after the film gets over. He is brutal and will remind you of Khal Drogo from ‘Game Of Thrones’.
Deepika as Rani Padmavati echoes the high sentiment of a Rajput woman. The climax is most dramatic with jaw-dropping imagery clouding your mind. The fight sequence between Khilji and Ratan Singh is a takeaway.
Also, Padmavati’s bravery is defined in the last scene which will rip your soul and make you go back in time to salute the pride and righteousness of the Rajput princess.