Director Sanjay Leela Bhansali would have never dreamt that his film on Rani “Padmaavati” would have faced such stiff resistance from certain influential fringe groups that would lead to change of title, postponement of release dates, a bounty on his head and so on.. However, in the end Bhansali would walk with pride that these fringe groups have been a huge publicity wagon for the film and importantly for free.

Into the film, it’s a trademark SLB product and his favorite actor Ranveer has more than lived in the role. It would be a difficult task to even think of another actor who could have enacted in the role of “Khilji” with a better performance. His performance is beyond words and on a lighter side, the film could have been titled “Khilji” instead of “Padmaavat” as that is the acting impact Ranveer has dished out in the final product.

The story-line is an open secret where Alauddin Khilji (Ranveer) comes invading the kingdom of Raja Maharawal Ratan Singh as his queen Padmaavati is the subject of greed and he wants to capture her at any cost. The screenplay is knitted around the events leading to the final march of Khilji into the Chittor Kingdom and what is that Rani Padmaavati does in the end to evade the clutches of an evil monster.

The film has a running time of 2hrs and 40 mins (approx.). The first half being a tad on the slower side while the second half picks pace a bit mainly on the eagerness from the viewer as to how the events would unfold. Overall, if there is patience then the story will slowly engulf one with the proceedings on screen. For the impatient soul, this would be an ordinary fare.

Deepika Padukone in the title character has acted with conviction while her counterpart in Shahid Kapoor as Maharaja Maharwal Ratan Singh is a complete misfit to the role. He strives hard to bring in the persona required for the role but falls awfully short. In terms of acting, he fizzles out before the might of Ranveer Singh.

Technically the film is a masterpiece and the master Sanjay Leela Bhansali deserves a standing ovation for the technical brilliance but when it comes to screenplay one would have expected more riveting twists and interesting turn of events to make proceedings spicier. The climax undoubtedly lifts the film to a different level but a bit more spice earlier would have augured well.

Overall, the inquisitiveness on the part of viewers to watch this magnum opus “Padmaavat” augurs well for the film at the box-office. In-spite of there being a locally induced ban on certain states in India, the initial collections seem very promising. Post the initial rush, a dip in collections is inevitable.

There is so much hard work put into the making of the film from all quarters which is evident in every single frame. Sanjay Leela Bhansali has time and again proven that he is a master act when it comes to making period films but sometimes even the master slips.

“Padmaavat” a film that doesn’t fully quantify the pre-release hype.

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