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Rohon Nag
  • 4/5
Clash of the Titans!

I really like historical films. But due to budget and bad direction, Bollywood is not known for many good historical epics. Tanhaji’s trailers were decent but the CGI looked bad and I wasn’t sold on the film.

Come Thursday, I felt the urge to see the film. The selling point for me was that I couldn’t see it in 3D when it comes to streaming! The hall was more than half-full so Friday First Day First Show it was!

Right at the beginning, it was clear that a LOT of care and attention had gone into the 3D aspect of the film. It wasn’t a throwaway addition at the last moment. Every shot since the beginning look AMAZING in 3D. Compared to a recent Hollywood mega huge budget Star Wars Episode 9 whose 3D was beyond terrible, this movie surprised it at how well it was using the 3D space!

Moving on from the 3D part, the film itself starts very strong. The opening shows glimpses of Tanhaji’s childhood and then an establishing fight to show his warrior prowess. I will not detail any more of the plot but I will say that when I saw the trailers… I was extremely skeptical as to how they will turn a siege of a fort into a 2.5 hours effective screenplay and film.

My concerns were totally unfounded. The film flows rather well, the pace never lets up and right till the end, the film manages to hold your attention.

Coming to the acting, Bollywood generally tends to OVERDO historical films (Mughal-e-Azam, Askhoka etc.) But the acting in the film is VERY natural. Ajay Devgn plays Tanhaji effortlessly and sells the character without much problem. Sharad Kelkar is amazing as Shivaji Maharaj. His pose and grandeur in portraying the most famous of the Marathas is both royal and commanding. On the other side, the threat is shown as a Mughal version of the death star, that is a huge canon about to devastate the Maratha capital. This threat is what setups and sells the rest of the plot and drives the action.

Good conflict is only as good as the villain. Without a strong villain, the hero’s actions are pointless. Saif is brilliant as Udaybhan Rathod. He is in charge of the aforementioned death star level canon. Every single one of his actions, mannerisms is just a treat to watch. He overshadows and overpowers Ajay Devgn’s performance and that is by design. Without a threatening and over powering villain, what will the heroes strive against?

The songs in the film are a bit redundant but they move the plot along, so that is a relief.

Coming to the main part of this historical epic. The action scenes. In the trailer, they looked a bit funny, but in the movie with 3D and proper sound, the action works really well. Finally, someone in Bollywood has managed to get close to Baahubali levels in action direction.

The ending fight scene is on another level. Bordering between a Marvel comic book style and Baahubali’s action, the scene is breath-taking. The audience went mad at the end of this scene. Very well directed and executed.

Overall :

This film is a necessary watch in theatres. The 3D is amazing, the action works very well. All the very fake liking CGI looks pretty good in 3D, though the horses and animals are still a bit digital, its forgivable as the budget of this film would be very less as compared to Hollywood epics. The story plot and acting are all well done. For fans of action and historical film this is a huge and rare treat. So to conclude, congratulations Bollywood for finally getting it just right! A rare moment, much appreciated by a film fan!

Rating : 8/10. Excellent and very strong entry into the historical action epic genre.

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