After a gap of 6 years, Ashutosh Gowariker has made a film and the trailers of it indicated that this one is going to sink too like is Whats your Rashee and the completely unnoticed Khele Hum Jee Jaan Se. Well, the man who made Lagaan, Swades and Jodha Akbar can never be underestimated or judged so quickly. Right, Mohenjo Daro is his fourth gem. Primarily the reason could be the soundtrack of the film which is not even remotely close to earlier combos of Ashutosh and Rahman. Apart from that, the trailers revealed that costumes are boring and so were the dialogues. Coming to the film, the costumes though boring it seemed appropriate considering the era. The dialogues were slightly dramatic in few scenes but most of them were apt to the context in the film. The last dialogue in the film is the simplest but gives an adrenaline rush.
Sarman (Hrithik Roshan) is a farmer cum artisan from a small place called Amri in Sindh. Since he was a kid, he had always dreamt of visiting Mohenjo Daro, as he senses some connection with that place. Sarman had lost his parents at an early age and raised by his Kaaka and Kaaki who always stopped him from visiting MohenjoDaro. One fine day, he finally reaches Mohenjo Daro to do some trade. He finds that the people there are suffering from the atrocities of the king Maham (Kabir Bedi). Also, he falls in love with Chaani (Pooja Hegde), who is considered as a symbol of Sindhu Maa and is looked upon divinely. Chaanu, however is engaged to Maham’s son Moonja (Arunoday Singh). Sarman’s intolerance for injustice and love for Chaani brings him into loggerheads with the king and prince. The rest of the film is about what wrath he faces and how he stands for the people.
On a high level if you see, Ashtuosh’s leads have always been a ‘Maseeha’ to a village/town and his way of portraying the heroism is to show the lead bringing the change in their lives. Hrithik was immaculate in being the Maseeha this time. The bravery, honesty and presence of mind were unmistakable. No one could have been more apt may be. The bravery is established right in the first scene with a crocodile very convincingly. A 15minute fight with two giants comes in the second half of the film, and it’s one of the scenes where you want to cheer for the hero.
The movie is not really about Mohenjo Daro civilization but a story set in the backdrop of it. The production design department was able to get the setup right enough to show the simplicity. The story was very simple and a plot that has been witnessed lot of times before. The age-old plot which even Bahubali used where a small town guy realizes he is the prince of a nearby kingdom. However, Ashutosh made it look engaging by setting it in an era and place where we are totally unfamiliar. He takes us to the world and makes us witness the proceedings without making it mundane anywhere. There is a point in the film (exactly after 2 hours of the film) where you think, the movie is already over story per se and what is he gonna show now? Then comes a fantastic episode which will make you spellbound. And the episode is very much required to show that Sarman wants to help people rather than rule them.
On the flipside, choice of the antagonist (Kabir Bedi) is a huge drawback. The senility lowered down the ferociousness and neither was the acting upto the mark. No doubt he has a great ersonality and voice, but he was a miscast for the film. Arunoday Singh was very good.
The technical department in the finale deserves and applause and Rahman’s mediocre work (considering his standards) deserves brickbats.
On the whole, Mr. Gowariker delivers another gem. Simple yet engaging.