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Most writers when queried confess that they get that knot, that idea, that concept when about to sleep or as dream. Prakash Jha must have slept with the idea of bringing the kingdom politics of Mahabharata to contemporary milieu. How great a concept it will turn out to be, with two families fighting for power at the cost of the people! He would have realized if we are to remove all the ethereal skin and flesh of Mahabharata and its politics, it all comes to that one word “Power”. This cinema fanatic turned politician would have turned back to his Godfather frenzy days when he knew it’s always about power; for the movie is filled with incidents from Godfather and the well inspired Sarkar. From the brother who a ruffian and weak with women by nature and yet genuine in his interest, the silent sibling who wages a war with just the commandeering blink of his eyes, his foreign love who seem to be the victim of his Rajneeti, it all comes to how these are deployed in this vast script. Then there is the sanctified Ganga and its son, a dangle between the families – a member of the union yet just a faithful stranger. Prakash Jha while in his blissful dream of scripting would have been so kicked up by then that before all these concocted to become another “Thalapathy”, woke up to document it. Thus it all ends up as just the documentation of this hair rising concept. Sure he goes a step further by painting the characters with the bloody colour of oldest political family of this country and yet it again stays a painting that doesn’t come alive before us. Consider the scene where Suraj’s mother coming to know of the truth, pleads to come home; a scene that should have cemented Suraj’s role in our heart. But, it ends up as just a formality thanks to the drooping eyes of Ajay Devgan. But we can’t just blame Devgan for this as his character is unsure of his stand himself. His attempts to be genuine with the people and work for the people seems to be again just a formality for he too is interested in power rather that the larger good. Having butchered the most honest character of Mahabharata nothing can be done by the magical Krishna played effectively by Nana patekar to bath us in the blood of Kurushetra which has been executed as the lamest battle to have ever fought even in a dream. The lonely, confident figure of Ranbir Kapoor and the distressed Katrina dressed up as incarnation of Indira/Sonia Gandhi are the saving graces of this film whose trials binds this cacophony of sorts into oneness to a large extent. But they again are left alone by the executers as they are shown to be too smart without doing anything.

Rajneeti can be best viewed and enjoyed as a recollection of the cult stories that still seem to be relevant in a strange way. No wonder it can be used as a film to quiz people: so from where did this scene birth? And this scene? And this scene?


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