Mangal mangal mangal ho….
I swear its been 1.5 hours since I watched the movie & its still on my mind [even after hearing cd again]. Damn good song no one can resist to sing along. Full marks to A.R.R. I have quoted in earlier blog that may be I would like the music after watching the flick. That’s right.
Talking about movie, this was my first ever experience of a first day first show. It has to, because I can’t wait anymore to watch in most controversial getup and after four years, its like ‘lambi judaai’ for me.
Movie is about a martyr who started off the rebellion against the British sultanate.[all knows about it so..Not repeating anymore.]
Movie starts of with first part of title song. Followed by a long shot of a north Indian village from the eyes of a river……comin next is an elephant and there comes the title. And gosh, for the first time I heard a lot of noise from audience. They were just SCREAMING….. Audience started screaming from the first line of song [dhanananan dhanana…]……..till nearly one minute. Ppl were just so excited that it took nearly one minute when they stopped screaming.. And mind u, this was not a mass kind of public…but this was a MULTIPEX audience. I was – as a great fan of Aamir – really surprised and even happier that ppl do like him at this level. The song goes as a prabhyatpheri; on elephant there are 4 ppl including Kailash kher, sionging and waking up ppl. Song stops at British jail. Inside it – a setup for ‘phansi’ [I don’t know proper English word] is there. And here come THE HERO. Surrounded by British sepoys and tied by chains. Just like wounded tiger. Audience again starts screaming. By seeing him just from backside. [my god, look what a great publicity does] setup is ready, jailer asks his last wish, he says ‘u can never fulfil my last wish’ [the first dialogue]. Some how ‘phansi’ gets canceled for few days cause ‘jallad’ denies to hang ‘Mangal Pandey’.
So there, Officer Gordon [Tobey Stephens, who is allover good in the movie] goes into flashback for us & story begins. [with interpretations of Om Puri]
Story begins in Afghanistan, where British troops fighting against afghans. This is quite a short but very well shot moment. Mangal saves Gordon from death. So on they become good friends.
Then come in Berrackpore, where all things happens British parties, slaves, tavayafs, etc. By the time, Gordon & mangal becomes very good friends,. They drink ‘bhang’ together, they sing silly song together, and they save life of ‘jwaala’ [amisha] from being ‘sati’- together.
Untill ‘fat’ [fate] do them against each other. [As u all know it was started when sepoys refused to fight with Kartoos which were made using cow & pig’s fat]
Hey, did I mention Rani is there? OK she’s an imagination of Farookh Dhondi, the script writer. But she’s stunningly beautiful [in whatever seven scenes she has]. In her introductory scene, one man is selling her in a ‘mela’. [a song ‘take take’ comes in this funfair]. A man from Kirron Kher’s [she looks totally weared wearing ‘mallika se bhi low-cut blouse] kotha, buys her. This kotha- as a sweeper describes to Mangal- is only for 3 ppl. Gora, Hijra & Achhut. Rani looks really ravishing, she just do talks with her eyes.
Now coming back to fat, some sepoys found that that is a fact. Gordon Denys it by pressure of his Boss. So there, Mangal do the honourof using them [until he knows the truth]. Then there comes a much awaited mujra. And gosh…Rani DOES act like she is actually a ‘tawayaf’. Expressions are too much real.
Story goes on [no I m not gonna tell you whole story]. Jwala – saved by Gordon, refuses to go to her parents cause ‘Jalim Samaj’ will kill her, lives with Gordon. A song ‘Bata de o goriya’ comes here. It is really useless song. [I think it was added just to get ceetees from the mass. So is with mujra. So is with sex scene between English Couple. So is with cheap comedy at some places. There is nothing to do with Mangal. Shameful Dear Ketan]. But ya song is quite good and exotic. [Sets are totally reminiscent of Lagaan]
So there, Amisha is no more virgin after the song.[actually she’s just ther to fill the time with some GLAMOUR in this male dominated movie, but so sad she doesn’t have any.
By the time Mangal realizes fact about Kartoos, and warns Gordon ‘ab tak tumne humari vafadari dekhi thi……’ etc. [dialogues are not that good, which a patriotic movie should have]
Then comes interval. Till now Aamir gets so much applause for his role.Rani & Amisha gets ceetees and more ceetees. Rani DOES act. Amisha DOESN’T [As usual]. Aamir looks really well prepared for his role, but there are some limitations named ‘ketan mehta’. Because of him, we still can’t feel something SOMETHING for Mangal. Aamir looks so much alive to live his role, a role of a soldier who works for Britishers and now dared to fight aginst them. His heart starts leaning to India.
PPL are gathering. Bnoth in hall and in movie’s village. Rebellion is starting, they plan everything. From troops to date of attack. A holi song comes next. [really a good song on screen] some scenes. A Sufi song [e mere daata…. Pretty nice, good, awesome….but not again Kailash kher –this time with close-ups….] and looks who’s here…..Tatya Tope [looks like we’re studying history] All characters are very well weaved.
What happens next, is history. No need to repeat. Rebellion starts early. Mangal’s sena don’t have support of too much troops so his troop alone fights [ action sequences are just okay] [but one scene I must mention, Mangal ‘standing alone’ against thousands of British Sepoys. A.R.R just not interfere. He just added real sound of thousands of boots walking on a ground. No music is there. Soldiers coming to him to catch him alive. Sound is so real. There is no need to add ‘wham – bam – boom’ The scene is a highlight of the movie]
So there, another version of mangal mangal’ comes then. I still cant get enough. Here comes who’s who of 1857 in the song. Peshwa Bajirao, Bahadurshah, Tatya Tope & above all Rani Laxmibai [I m really eager to watch movie abt her – last in trilogy by Ketan Mehta]. So then, THE RISING starts in India [which was not going to stop till 1947]
Case gets filesd against Mangal accusing him ‘bagaawat’ in British Army. One interesting scene, Mangal is just sitting and carrasing his Mustache and case hearing is on. Aamir looks really MANGAL PANDEY. As u all know, he gets death sentence.
Flashback over. Last version of Mangal mangal. Sure to bring tears to everyone.
Then comes a documentary abt how we got freedom.
At the end ‘at least audience in my cinema hall’ was screaming ‘bharat mata ki jay’ by seeing the first flag rising from the Red Fort. Quite a moment to remember.
Now, the criticism. First of all I must say this movie, LACKS of emotions. After all it’s a patriotic movie, but somewhere something is missing. [which was there in The legend of Bhagat Singh, I still cry when 3 friends gets ‘phansi’]. That’s emotion. In a very few scenes, we can feel goosebumps. No comments about Aamir. He is always THE BEST. But to admit, this is not his lifetime best performance [as they said]. Actresses are just okay. Rani’s good while Amisha…….hahaha [i came home and watched interview of her, she said she has read some books, done research on this kind of satipratha and relations of English and Indian, boy and girl….i was still laughing………..all this research for just 4 scenes……….hahaha] [again she was telling, its my dream come true to work with Aamir – poor girl she has just one scene with him – while she was fainted---hahahaha]
Background score, was also just okay. Mangal mangal is the GEM of the movie. The way ‘dhol & nagara’ played is amazing. Provoking. ‘Goriya’ song is exotic and well composed. But useless. Mujra is typical. Yet good. ‘take take’ is useless.
I cant see where the large, lavish budget went. Everything looks under normal. Not paranormal. Which is required in such movie.There was no need to go to Uzabekistan to shoot some scenes. Ketan says that he has read around 1200 books about Mangal. Now whts we are getting? Two imaginations Rani & Amisha, another imagination of friendship between Gordon & Mangal. And so on. OK cinematic liberty is one thing. But in a period film like this, u must be very careful and loyal to your subject. Even useless sex comedy is here in some parts. Shameful again for such a adorable moveie. [don’t want to compare, but I have to – with Lagaan- no useless songs, no useless characters. OK in period films – take Bhagatsingh –Ajay Devgan’s- it was also very authentic; songs in them again by A.R.R. were amazing]
Editing of Sreekar Prasad is allover well. Cinematography matches the era. Costumes are also good. But one thing Ketan did missed –a man was running with crowd wearing PANTS in 1857??? All in all, I sould say, it could be better than this. Lots of energy wasted in publisizing whole movie till these 3 years. They should put that in movie. [If not, so don’t create such hype that disappoints and cheats people later] People will try to find Big war against Britishers, Lagaan & Gadar kind of patriotism, which is not there. [I m not expecting that, cause after all it was just a start of rising, but after all that the choice of people] so they’ll feel cheted. At once the film is feel good, feel patriot kinda movie. Movie goers will surely go to watch it. But abut 15 or 20% only will be the repeat audience. So there Ketan - oscar – there is always a next time. Better luck again Aamir. U ROCK.
Till then……………mangal mangal…………………
p.s.[Don’t just decide by this review, go and watch the film urself..cause there are lot of efforts put in by people. So please do watch it. This is just my opinion]
Predicted Awards: Male singer [Kailash & Sukhvindar for Mangal mangal], Costumes, Action, Lyrics, Music [tough competition], sound recording.