Movie: Raajneeti

Prakash Jha directs this movie which is based on a story written by himself. He has adapted “Mahabharata” against the backdrop of dynasty politics. The adaptation is apt and brilliant. The movie retains the flow of Mahabharata at the superficial level. The brilliant strokes of imagination makes the events take you completely by surprise. There are a couple of scenes which references from the epic directly like Kunti revealing Karna’s identify to him, Krishna urging Arjun to take up arms. These scenes lack impact as these scenes have been depicted on screen and off screen many times. In order to take the movie forward, Prakash also borrows heavily from the classic movie “Godfather”. These scenes are done beautifully even though these are a dead giveaway for an avid moviegoer. As a director, Prakash proves that he can tell a story on a huge canvas with an ensemble cast. Prakash tells the story using traditional approach without resorting to jump cuts and fast editing. He lets his actors shine while the audience are focused on the events. The songs are short and often immediately moves to the background. The background music blends in so as not to distract us from the movie.

Ranbir Kapoor is perfect as Samar Pratap. Samar is a pacifist trying to suppress his animal instincts. The turn of events thrust him into politics where he become a cold blooded kingmaker! Ranbir acts well and shows us a smooth transformation from the pacifist to kingmaker. He has added to his diverse repertoire of characters with this role. He has all the trappings of a good actor.

Nana Patekar plays Brij Gopal, the advisor to Samar Pratap and also his family. Brij is a silent listener who analyses the motives of the people around and makes quick decision on how to checkmate them. Although Nana Patekar is on most of the frames, he talks seldom. He lends able support to the other players in the movie. His performance is surprising and refreshing at the same time and in direct contrast with his earlier loud performances.

Manoj Bajpai breathes fire and spits evil with his portrayal of Veerendra Pratap. He is arrogant and will not hesitate for a second to get what he wants. After a very long time, the actor is given a worthwhile role. Arjun Rampal and Katrina Kaif are good. Ajay Devgn is not fully utilized in the role of Sooraj Kumar. Here is an actor who is good at emoting. But, unfortunately, his role is too short to have an impact.

The rest of the cast – Naseeruddin Shah, Nikhila Tirkha, Darshan Jariwala – makes their short roles effective.

At a running time of over 3 hours, this is a very long movie. Yet, it is an interesting watch. With the backing of UTV and a strong script, Prakash Jha shows that nothing can wrong if you plan well.

Must Watch!

Language: Hindi

Genre: Drama

Rating: ****

Picture Courtesy: Bollywood Hungama

Tags: Movies,Prakash Jha,Ranbir Kapoor,Nana Patekar,Manoj Bajpai,Arjun Rampal,Katrina Kaif,Naseeruddin Shah,UTV,Drama


  1. Must watch? Hmm, will keep that in mind though dragging hubby for a Ranbir kapoor movie is a difficult task.And unlike some people I know, I hate to watch movies alone!

  2. Ranbir Kapoor is looking dashing in trailors.
    A good review and must watch movie. :) Thanks for sharing review of this movie. :)

  3. I have not seen it yet, but will complete this responsibility in the coming week.

  4. @Aparna - Good Luck on getting your hubby to agree! Let me know after you watched the movie!

    @Chandrika - Thanks.

    @BKC - Let me know what you think after viewing the movie!

  5. Dude. It was a terrible movie. Starts off well and then implodes on itself in such a horrible fashion. We were laughing all through :-)

  6. @Mayank - I liked it and did not feel bored anywhere! For the scenes that strongly resembled Godfather, they could have thought of something better!

  7. 1. You contradict yourself so many times. There is no clear consensus on your feelings towards the scene ripped off from Mahabharata, The Godfather etc.

    2. The movie isn't "over 3 hours long". It is around 2 hours 48 min. Maybe a little bit of research before reviewing?

    3. Didn't you think the movie was a bit too artificial? As in, the characters murdered people, kidnapped people, participated in high speed car chases etc. etc. that too just before an upcoming election but still, none of them was caught. Really hard to believe in today's day and age.

    4. The thematics of the film are really screwy. By all logic, Ranbir Kapoor's character shouldn't be portrayed as the hero and the ending he gets and the light he is portrayed in is incredulous. He ruthlessly murdered people! He double-crossed so many people! Yet, the movie shows him smiling and exchanging hugs in the end. Also, he killed people with a clear gun, was in a fatal car chase throughout town with a clearly identifiable car, yet he is able to leave the country nicely? REALLY?! No one confiscated his passport, restrained him etc. etc.? Unbelievable!

    5. Also, I just don't agree with your rating of 4/5 of the film. In my review on my blog, I gave it 2.5/5. Moreover, you don't provide sufficient reasons for the film being so awesome and why it deserves 4 stars is never made clear from your review.

    6. there are LOTS of syntactical and semantical errors in the review. You might wanna use MS Word next time around.

    Sorry for sounding so negative but this isn't a rant. This is constructive criticism as all these points jumped to my mind when I read your article.

  8. @Lazy Garfield - Thanks for your dropping by and also providing a detailed inputs on the review. I will definitely work towards points 1 and 5! I'm hoping the more writing I do the more I will improve on those points.

    About 3 and 4, you are asking moral questions. So, I am going to ignore them. This is a movie and the makers are allowed to have cinematic liberties.

    About 2, I might have gone for what I perceived to be length.

    About 6, this is a recurring theme. Some of the readers suggest changes to the article to correct the mistakes and that really helps me.


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