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Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi Movie Review : Patriotic and entertaining war drama, fuelled by Kangana Ranaut’s performance

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Film review: 'Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi' is a historical epic that falls flat

Kangana ranaut's directorial debut is, perhaps, not the success she would have hoped for.

Kangana Ranaut in 'Manikarnika'

Kangana Ranaut in 'Manikarnika'

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Director: Kangana Ranaut, Krish Jagarlamudi

Producer: Zee Studios, Kamal Jain

Cast: Kangana Ranaut, Ankita Lokhande, Danny Denzongpa, Atul Kulkarni

Rating: 2.5/5

Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi is another take on the familiar story of Rani Laxmibai, the well-known female resistance leader who fought back in the early days of the British colonisation of India through the East India Company.

As well as taking on the lead role, the film marks Kangana Ranaut’s directorial debut, with help in the chair from Krish Jagarlamudi. And, simply put, the best thing about the film is Ranaut - but its downfall is that it’s all about Ranaut.

Undoubtedly, the Queen actress took on some heavy lifting with the dual role. However, the script lets the movie down, feeling contrived with an almost cookie-cutter approach to the well-told historical narrative.

Although it’s not as much of a blatant propaganda piece as other movies released this month – in fact, it may not even be propaganda – it still portrays a seminal moment in Indian history, with a prevalent “coming together in the country’s hour of need” message.

That said, the film has its share of bright moments: the music and background score is good, in particular Shankar Mahadavan's Vijayi Bhava is an inspiring song. And the costumes by Neeta Lulla are well worth a mention. They befit the period drama, while feeling sufficiently glamorous.

Beyond that, it goes downhill. The dialogue, although penned by award-winning writer Prasoon Joshi, feels amateur. The script’s focus seems to be highlighting the multiple facets of Laxmibai’s personality, which either falls flat or contradicts itself. She is portrayed as an animal lover, despite the fact that she hunts a tiger in the opening scene; she is a book lover; she is witty and a humble people person, despite a Brahminical background in an orthodox class-based society. All while being a dutiful wife and a war strategist, nonetheless.

Kangana Ranaut in 'Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi'. Courtesy Zee Studios

The visual effects for the all-important war scenes, especially in the climax, are underwhelming, especially when compared to movies like SS Rajamouli's Baahubali 1 and 2 and Sanjay Leela Bhansali's Padmaavat . Comparisons are inevitable, however, especially when you consider that Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi 's screenplay was penned by Baahubali writer Vijayendra Prasad.

Watching the movie, you can’t help but feel like the likes of Danny Denzongpa (Ghouse Khan) and Suresh Oberoi (Peshwa Baji Rao II) have been wasted, in a bid to maximise the camera time of Ranaut.

If you are looking for a real historical insight into the Jhansi ruler and her place in history, this is not the film. That is except for two simple facts: she did not ascend the throne by choice, and she showed exemplary courage and fighting skill against the odds.

Amy Jackson and Rajinikanth in 2.0.

While promoting the film, Ranaut has been upfront about not meeting the “requirements” of the role. She has spoken frankly about underestimating the physical demands, which eventually required her to give up veganism and incorporating eggs into her diet, which in part helped her “gain 5 to 6kg in weight”.

She also addressed other controversies attached to the project, including the delayed release and her directorial status. Touching on the fact that the film had to be vastly re-shot in order to match the script’s original vision, she said that she felt “vulnerable”, when she was accused of stealing Jagarlamudi’s glory.

Ranaut recalled Joshi's advice to her, saying, "Kangana, mediocrity will always be threatened by talent." But when talent is matched with mediocrity in a project, talent can only take it so far.

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Manikarnika Movie Review: Kangana Ranaut's Soulless Film Reduces Laxmi Bai To A Stunt Queen

Manikarnika movie review: the film is kangana ranaut all the way. her belief in her ability to carry the film on her shoulders is touching..

Manikarnika Movie Review: Kangana Ranaut's Soulless Film Reduces Laxmi Bai To A Stunt Queen

Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi Movie Review - A still from the film. (Image courtesy Instagram )

Cast: Kangana Ranaut, Ankita Lokhande, Jisshu Sengupta, Zeeshan Ayyub, Danny Denzongpa, Atul Kulkarni

Directors: Kangana Ranaut and Krish

Rating: 1 Star (out of 5)

Avowedly meant to stimulate patriotic zeal - " matrubhumi se niswarth prem (selfless love for the motherland)" - among Indian moviegoers 160 years after Rani Laxmi Bai laid down her life on the battlefield, Manikarnika - The Queen of Jhansi , is too exhausting a film to send the audience home bubbling with enthusiasm. The visual effects are low-grade, the stilted dialogues reek of laziness, the onscreen performances are pedestrian and the sets have a hurriedly-erected feel.

Manikarnika , for which lead actress Kangana Ranaut takes directing credit ahead of Radha Krishna Jagarlamudi, blows history to smithereens and reduces the Rani of Jhansi, one of greatest warriors India has ever known, to a stunt queen, turning the film in the bargain into an outright travesty of cinema. The story of the queen's short but glorious life deserves a movie all right but a much better one than this.

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In one surprising sequence, the Rani of Jhansi speaks unblemished English although the audience is never introduced to her language tutor. Stating that "words without culture have no meaning" - yes, in so many words and in Queen's English - she proceeds to extol the virtues of the mother tongue. " Matrubhasha maa hoti hai ," she declares. Like much else in Manikarnika , this comes out of nowhere and leaves you scratching your head in disbelief.

In other scenes, the Rani runs and leaps like a champion athlete and mounts her steed with a hop, step and jump. We are expected to gape at the spectacle in wonder. We might have done so if only her exploits were lent a touch a believable humanity. She strikes no chords because all she does is deliver homilies on patriotism, courage and national pride. There is no room for nuance here. The real woman behind the irrepressible patriot is lost in the din.

In another crucial scene, the Rani's husband, Maharaja Gangadhar Rao Newalkar (Jisshu Sengupta in an extended role in which he isn't allowed to use his own voice), likens the bangles he wears to handcuffs, an emblem of enslavement. Why a film about a female ruler and warrior of unparalleled stature should treat a woman's accessory as a symbol of servitude is beyond comprehension unless one presumes that the makers of this movie do not know better.

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Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi Movie Review - A still from the film. (Image courtesy YouTube )

The fact that Manikarnika , in an opening disclaimer, lays no claims to historical accuracy cannot, however, absolve its makers of the blame for producing a film so astonishingly inept. This despite the fact that it loses no opportunity to whip up exuberance - beginning with an introductory voiceover by Amitabh Bachchan drawing our attention to the hinsaa (violence) and atyachar (tortune) that the British East India Company unleashed on this " pavitra " bhoomi.

By turning Rani Laxmi Bai's valour into pulpy posturing about her wanting to be a mashaal (fire) of azaadi (freedom) in the hearts of her people for all times to come, the ho-hum screenplay (by KK Vijayendra Prasad) delivers a comic-strip rendition of a memorable, if tragic, chapter of Indian history, shorn of its intricacies. It captures neither the exemplary heroism nor the pathos of the queen's life. The Sepoy Mutiny of 1857, which triggered a widespread rebellion against the British rulers and was a key juncture in Rani Laxmi Bai's life, is ill-advisedly glossed over .

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The film does devote sufficient footage to the birth and death of her only child as well as to the premature death of her husband, but the titular figure's single-note demeanour allows for no depth in the characterization of a woman who broke every conceivable societal norm of her times.

We first see Kangana in 1842 - when Rani Laxmi Bai was 14 - using a bow and arrow to stop a tiger from pouncing on a hapless goat. The next thing we know is she is nursing the predator's wound and then setting the creature free. A little later, she saves a calf from ending up as lunch for British officers. Can a film about nationalism be complete today without an act of gauraksha ?

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The queen lived for 16 more years from the time she incapacitates the tiger and the character passes through different stages of that time-frame, but no perceptible change registers on the actress' visage, which, in any case, is behind so much cosmetic goop that it rules out the possibility of any tangible emotions filtering through the layers of make-up.

Kangana settles into a predictable pattern. She smiles through many of the most difficult situations that the rani faces, sports a smirk when she has to exude insouciance, goes all wide-eyed and holds an unblinking gaze when the idea is to convey obduracy, and raises her voice several notches to represent unbridled rage. All through the film, Kangana flits from one of the above moods to another, but the film never sheds its monotony. Especially mechanical are the battle scenes - they might be sporadic but when one erupts it goes on forever, consuming a lot of the film's two-and-a-half-hour runtime.

The cast of Manikarnika has some actors of proven class - Danny Denzongpa in the role of Mohammad Gouse Khan, Rani's Laxmi Bai's trusted cannon expert; Atul Kulkarni as freedom fighter Tatya Tope (a leading figure in the First War Of Independence) and Mohammad Zeeshan Ayyub essaying the character of a treacherous man whose designs on the Jhansi throne are thwarted - but none is allowed the space to rise above the overwhelming mediocrity of the material.

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Not surprisingly, the British colonial officers, played by the likes of Richard Keep (General Hugh Rose) and Edward Sonnenblick (Captain John Gordon), are bad-guy caricatures. They have even less of a chance of making a mark.

Manikarnika is Kangana Ranaut all the way. Her belief in her ability to carry a historical saga of this scale on her shoulders is touching, even admirable. But her move into the director's seat couldn't obviously have helped the film's cause. She is everywhere, even where she isn't required. The result of the overreach is an overstretched, exaggerated drama that huffs and puffs its way through many a zone of utter redundancy.

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Manikarnika is agonizingly soulless. Platitudes piled upon synthetic platitudes do not add up to great cinema, especially when none of the film's war cries delivers any bang for its buck. Save yours and give the film a miss unless you like the sound of misfires.

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Manikarnika movie review: Kangana Ranaut owns the period drama

Manikarnika movie review: what keeps us with manikarnika is rani ranaut, who in her best moments, owns her part, the narrative, and the screen..

manikarnika movie review in english

Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi movie cast: Kangana Ranaut, Jisshu Sengupta, Atul Kulkarni, Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub, Ankita Lokhande, Kulbhushan Kharbanda, Danny Denzongpa, Richard Keep Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi movie directors: Kangana Ranaut, Radha Krishna Jagarlamudi Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi movie rating: Two and a half stars

Kangana Ranaut in and as Manikarnika, the queen of Jhansi, delivers exactly what was promised: a high-decibel, high-on-rhetoric hagiography of a queen who fought for her people and her land, till her last breath.

manikarnika movie review in english

There is not a single complex thought in this nearly three-hour movie, which runs out of steam in the third act because it needs to repeat its battle scenes ad nauseam to fill up the time till the end. It’s all kept deliberately kindergarten-level simple (in some places, even simplistic), linear, first this happened, then this happened, and then. We the viewers have to do no work to get with the movie’s plan: we just have to sit back, go with the flow, flabby and clunky in bits, and admire Ranaut blazing on the screen.

Which she does, with such fierceness and gumption that you cannot take your eyes off her, especially when she is in full stride. She embodies the spirit of a very special young woman married into a ‘rajwada’, to an effeminate princely type (Sengupta), catapulted into the throne, not because she wants it, but because she is the only real man among the men who surround her.

Naturally, no other actor gets as much screen time as her: after a while it looks as if she is in practically every scene, as Manikarnika : The Queen Of Jhansi takes us from the ghats of Manikarnika in Banaras, to Bithoor where Manu’s prowess with words and swords catches the eye of the man (Kharbanda) responsible for her marriage and make-over as Rani Laxmibai of Jhansi.

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The filmmakers (with Ranaut getting a co-director credit) have the usual caveat of the film taking creative liberties with the facts. So we don’t really have to worry our heads about whether all the stuff unfolding on screen happened or not. We are given a glimpse of palace intrigues where a black-hearted cousin (Ayyub) hankers for the throne, as Ranaut’s Laxmi, dripping enough brocade and baubles to sink a thousand thrones, plays the part of wife and mother. It’s all very trying, this prelude to the real act, filled with Ranaut made up to the hilt (did they really have false eyelashes in 1830?) romancing, dancing, singing with ‘sakhis’ in age-old Bollywood style.

The film does make a brief stab at showing us how Laxmi created an army of women (and giving the film its chance to sling in a rousing ‘action’ song as they flash blades and swirl and twirl). Other characters come and go. There’s the faithful Ghaus baba (Denzongpa), Tantya Tope (Kulkarni), and a whole series of bumbling Englishmen, who make the mistake of thinking that Rani will be a weak puppet, just like her neighbouring princes who have keeled over at the slightest hint of British aggression, and are living on their pensions.

The 1857 Mutiny pops up too, and we get a glimpse of the ‘greased cartridges’ and the ‘chhaavni of Meerut’ and the ‘rebel’ armies falling by the wayside. But we know it’s all window dressing, a backdrop for the Rani to rise, and show us what bravery and valour and patriotism is all about. Ranaut in full battle mode is a sight to behold: harnessed, charged up, tearing and slashing through the rows of ‘dushman’ soldiers, all snarly and bloody. The battle scenes are impressive: lots of ‘josh’ right there.

Also Read | Manikarnika movie review and release LIVE UPDATES

The film skews, naturally, towards the ruling establishment in its exhortation of what nationalism means (there’s a great Scindia-Gwalior dig in there). A calf is saved from slaughter. Dialogues abound about ‘Bharat Mata’ and its ‘betis’, and a priceless one goes like this: ‘jab beti uth khadi hoti hai toh jeet badi hoti hai’. Claptrap, yes. But also clap clap.

As promised, Manikarnika does tick all the nationalistic boxes. It is getting a perfectly-timed Republic Day release. And there are plenty of eye-roll moments as it chases the red-faced Brits, and raises the flag. It may have been Jhansi, but it is clearly a prelude to the ‘tiranga’. But what keeps us with the film is Rani Ranaut, who in her best moments, owns her part, the single-track narrative, and the screen.

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manikarnika movie review in english

  • Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi
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Patriotic and entertaining war drama, fuelled by Kangana Ranaut’s performance.

manikarnika movie review in english

Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi Movie Review: Patriotic and entertaining war drama, fuelled by Kangana Ranaut’s performance

  • Times of India
  • Navbharat Times
  • Mumbai Mirror
  • Maharashtra Times

In-depth Analysis

Our overall critic’s rating is not an average of the sub scores below.

Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi - Official Trailer

Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi - Official Trailer

Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi - Official Teaser

Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi - Official Teaser

Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi - Official Telugu Trailer

Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi - Official Telugu Trailer

Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi - Official Tamil Trailer

Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi - Official Tamil Trailer

Manikarnika | Song - Vijayi Bhava

Manikarnika | Song - Vijayi Bhava

Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi | Song - Bharat

Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi | Song - Bharat

Manikarnika | Song - Rajaji

Manikarnika | Song - Rajaji

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Awesome movie...

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  • This film marks the first collaboration of uncle-nephew duo Anil Kapoor and Arjun Kapoor. Arjun is the son of Anil’s brother Boney Kapoor. Share
  • This film marks the first collaboration of uncle-nephew duo Anil Kapoor and Arjun Kapoor. Arjun is the son of Anil’s brother Boney Kapoor.
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manikarnika movie review in english

Manikarnika Movie Review: Kangana Ranaut excellent as Queen of Jhansi, film not so much

If you're a kangana ranaut fan, manikarnika is the film for you. if you remember your history lessons, take manikarnika with a generous pinch of salt..

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Manikarnika Movie Review: Kangana Ranaut in a still from the film

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manikarnika movie review in english

Kangana Ranaut

160 years after Rani Laxmibai died on the battlefield during the 1857-58 mutiny against the British, directors Radha Krishna Jagarlamudi and Kangana Ranaut present us with a film on the brave queen, Manikarnika, whose life was tragically cut short. Sadly, the 148-minute Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi, which is a collaborative effort from the two, fails to give Laxmibai's character some substance and more shades. What Manikarnika turns out to be is thus something straight out of a Class-8 history textbook; at points, even an Amar Chitra tale.

Manikarnika the film kicks off with viewers being introduced to the strong and independent Manikarnika (Kangana Rananut), who is well-versed in archery and sword-fighting. From taming a wild horse, to shooting a tiger from afar, or hop, skip and jumping to her elephant, it seems like she is the champion of stunts. There's a constant flurry of expository dialogues on how fearless she is; enough to make your head spin.

Manikarnika is married off to Maharaja Gangadhar Rao Newalkar (Jisshu Sengupta) of Jhansi. He is more than impressed by her fearless behaviour. The Rajmata of the house isn't, and strongly reprimands her. A woman's place is in the palace and the kitchen, she tells Manikarnika, who pretty much rolls her eyes at her. This doesn't stop Manikarnika (now renamed Rani Laxmibai after marriage) from roaming around town freely. Clouds loom over her seemingly-blissful life after her first child dies, and shortly later, her husband. The British officers are eager to capture Jhansi, and don't accept her adopted son as the heir to the throne. Laxmibai's fight against the British forms the rest of the story of Manikarnika.

Apart from blowing historical accuracy to smithereens, Manikarnika suffers from lazy writing, stilted dialogues, shoddy visual effects and bizarre caricaturing of the English. Some scenes are downright ridiculous, like when Kangana storms into British grounds to rescue a calf for her friend Jhalkaribai (Ankita Lokhande), and then gives an unblemished speech in English, when British officers try to take a dig at her for not knowing the language.

In earlier films on freedom struggle, like Lagaan or even Mangal Pandey for that matter, filmmakers had still tried to make the British officers of the East India Company more nuanced, or to put it in fewer words -- more believable. In Manikarnika, the evil and conniving British officers are straight out of an Ekta Kapoor serial. There's no subtlety, they outright voice their plans of taking over Jhansi and you wonder if this is a potboiler from the 90s or taking place in 2019. All that's needed is the signature evil 'dhoom tananana' in the background. Not just this, the makers have fallen for cliches, hook, line and sinker. The English officers seem to be wearing top hats in every scene. Worse, they sound as if they're reading their dialogues off a teleprompter.

In short, the scenes with the British officers make you want to scream into a pillow. They spout dialogues like "Rani ka sar jhukega!" Interestingly, Manikarnika the film seems to unintentionally be about a war between Laxmibai and a very vengeful and vindictive Sir Hugh Rose (the man who led the army against the queen in 1858). He's such a bitter soul that he even kills a young child for sharing her name with Laxmibai. (What?)

Kangana as the actor shines all through the first half of Manikarnika. She brings her feminist views into the story, which is one of the better points about the film. However, she seems to get complacent and settles into a comfortable and altogether predictable pattern. In the second half of Manikarnika, she seems to be relying on exactly four to five expressions and emotions. When she's being snarky to the British officers, there's a slight smirk on her countenance. When she's in a state of fury, her eyes tear up and her voice gets tremulous and rises a few notches. She stares back unflinchingly when spewing homilies on patriotism and national pride.

Yet, she is the life of this exhausting drama, as even other class-actors like Atul Kulkarni recede into the background. Ankita Lokhande is determined to prove her worth as Laxmibai's faithful companion Jhalkaribai on the big screen, and does a fair job of it.

The background music aids the storytelling when Manikarnika reaches its climax, but is soon painful to your ears. The songs blend into the story but there's nothing to write home about. The film wins hands down in the departments of cinematography and set design.

But despite Kangana's best efforts, Manikarnika fails to bring Rani Laxmibai to life in this exhausting and over-exaggerated drama.

So should you watch Manikarnika? Make an informed choice. If you're a Kangana Ranaut fan, Manikarnika is THE film for you. If you remember your history lessons, take Manikarnika with a generous pinch of salt, says our review.

3 out of 5 stars for Manikarnika, one of those completely for Kangana Ranaut.

ALSO READ THACKERAY MOVIE REVIEW

ALSO READ | Kangana to reshoot Manikarnika at Rs 20 cr extra cost after Sonu Sood's exit?

ALSO READ | Sonu Sood on exiting Manikarnika: Cannot work with two directors on one set

ALSO WATCH | Kangana Ranaut opens up on being called witch, whore and psychopath

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Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi Reviews

manikarnika movie review in english

When talent is matched with mediocrity in a project, talent can only take it so far.

Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5 | Jan 31, 2019

A legend gets reborn, at least on screen, and maybe that's the only reality palatable to us right now...

Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/5 | Jan 28, 2019

The film is only set on making Laxmibai a hero (but we already knew that). A little insight into her mind would have been nice.

Full Review | Jan 26, 2019

The Manikarnika production isn't lavish enough to suggest a grand sweep of history, and the focus on its heroine is too narrow to accommodate a larger conversation about the efficacy of Lakshmibai's actions.

The fact that Manikarnika, in an opening disclaimer, lays no claims to historical accuracy cannot, however, absolve its makers of the blame for producing a film so astonishingly inept.

Full Review | Original Score: 1/5 | Jan 26, 2019

manikarnika movie review in english

What keeps us with the film is Rani Ranaut, who in her best moments, owns her part, the single-track narrative, and the screen.

Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5 | Jan 26, 2019

manikarnika movie review in english

... despite these flaws, Manikarnika reveals Kangana as an artist with boundless ambition and I'm excited to see what she creates next.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/5 | Jan 26, 2019

Ranaut is glorious. She wears a dazzling smile early on like a cloak of confidence, and later slices down enemy soldiers with a fury that must surely have injured some extras on the set.

If you are a fan of warrior epic that's solely Ranaut's battlefield, this one is for you. Others can safely duck this nationalism-fuelled saga.

Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5 | Jan 25, 2019

manikarnika movie review in english

Manikarnika is a well-made film that highlights Kangana's prowess as an actor.

Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/5 | Jan 25, 2019

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'Manikarnika' movie review: Kangana shines in a superfluous narrative

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Here is an opportunity for those who have not heard of the legendary Rani Laxmibai, the warrior queen of Jhansi, who gallantly battled against the British with her infant son tied to her back during the Indian revolution.

With a tale spanning from 1828 to 1858, the film, "Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi" gives you a fair picture about her life and times.

It tells us how Manikarnika born in Varanasi, marries Raja Gangadhar Rao Newalkar of Jhansi and is named Laxmibai in honour of the goddess Lakshmi and according to the traditions. The gloomy turn of events is perfunctorily handled and while the film captures the piece of history, the disclaimer at the very beginning of this period drama clearly lays the foundation for its faltering reproduction.

'Manikarnika', movie review: Kangana shines in a superfluous narrative

Actress Kangana Ranaut who has helmed this film along with Krish Jagarlamudi, plays the eponymous role with all sincerity. Her craft-fuelled intoxication is both naive and endearing. She breathes life into the feisty Manikarnika, but, just like the eye lashes she flaunts in the film, there is something innately false in the story telling; the writing and direction.

The scenes crafted like a tableau are slow paced with over dramatic gestures. The visuals with low angle shots, focus more on the grandeur of the palaces and poise of the actors and thus the film fails to hook you emotionally.

'Manikarnika', movie review: Kangana shines in a superfluous narrative

Prasoon Joshi's dialogues have a few gems strewn sporadically. The patriotic fervour it whips to such an extreme outcome in the end, that you inevitably start raising your eyebrows at the contrived narrative.

Supporting Kangana in her endeavour are; Kulbushan Karbanda as the chief advisor of Jhansi, Jishu Sengupta as Maharajah Gangadhar Rao, Atul Kulkarni as Manikarna's ally Tatya Tope, Suresh Oberoi as Peshwa Baji Rao II, Mohammed Zeeshan Ayub as Raja Gangadhar Rao's cousin Sadashiv, Ankita Lokhande and Prajakta Mali as Jhalkari Bai and Kashi Bai citizens of Jhansi. On the acting front, every actor appears sincere, but none stand out for their performance.

'Manikarnika', movie review: Kangana shines in a superfluous narrative

Visually the film is a treat.

Kangana Ranaut chats with AI-version of former PM Indira Gandhi at Pradhanmantri Sangrahalaya

Kangana Ranaut chats with AI-version of former PM Indira Gandhi at Pradhanmantri Sangrahalaya

Kangana Ranaut is all praise for PM Modi as she, Esha Gupta visit new Parliament building

Kangana Ranaut is all praise for PM Modi as she, Esha Gupta visit new Parliament building

The war scenes with astutely choreographed action sequences are imposing. Mounted on a magnificent scale of an epic with excellent production values, the elaborate production designs of the sets along with the costumes are impressive. They are painstakingly captured by Cinematographer Kiran Deohans' lens.

'Manikarnika', movie review: Kangana shines in a superfluous narrative

The VFX and the live action sequences are seamlessly layered by Film Editor Rameshwar S. Bhagat.

Overall, this film is awe inspiring due to its grandeur but fails to touch the emotional chord in your heart.

'Manikarnika', movie review: Kangana shines in a superfluous narrative

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Manikarnika movie review: Kangana Ranaut is a one-woman army

Manikarnika movie review: kangana ranaut is glorious, but the budgetary constrains show and the overall impact is amar chitra katha. rating: 3/5..

Manikarnika movie review: Kangana Ranaut’s film is an arrow against cinema’s patriarchy, a broadside against the boys.

It doesn’t feel like a coincidence that Kangana Ranaut is called Manu in her new film. The full name of the Queen of Jhansi was Manikarnika Tambe, but the film informs us she was nicknamed Manu, like the hero of the Tanu Weds Manu movies where Ranaut found such success as Tanu. This film comes from the actress after she has waged war with industry bigwigs and taken over directorial duties mid-stream, and the messaging is unmistakable: this queen needs no man.

Ranaut makes you believe it. Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi sets up a world where the woman wages war, while the men dance and matchmake. Ranaut is gleeful as she shows the men how its done, fencing expertly while running across the backs of horses and onto that of an elephant. These are cartoonish stunts, but nothing outside the Hindi film playbook, and if they feel harder to swallow, we should ask ourselves if that is because they’re performed by a woman and not some guy named Akshay or Ajay.

The film seems as historically accurate as Mel Gibson’s Braveheart — which is to say it prizes the valorous myth, and takes ’creative liberties’ to tell its story. This works as long as the story is gripping. Directed by Ranaut and Radha Krishna Jagarlamudi, Manikarnika achieves the simplistic ambition of saluting the legendary queen, but feels too long and a bit too cardboard. The budgetary constraints show. The patchwork is constant. However, it must be said that all our period epics look like filmed theatre productions (only in the Baahubali films do swords appear heavy) and there is a straightforward earnestness to Manikarnika, even when craft is lacking. This one feels less wasteful than excessive period catastrophes, and I’d readily pick it over a baroque Sanjay Leela Bhansali carnival .

The overall impact is admittedly Amar Chitra Katha, and the storytelling is structured like a children’s film — albeit one with a fair bit of blood — which may not be a bad move, considering how quickly viewers get used to the simplistic syntax. There is much that is laughable, not least the British villains who attend court wearing bowlers and top hats and retire for wartime sleep in black satin pyjamas, but like the history books have always advertised about Jhansi, this is a one-woman show.

manikarnika movie review in english

Ranaut is glorious. She wears a dazzling smile like a cloak of confidence, and slices down enemy soldiers with a fury that must surely have injured some extras on the set. We know what this actress is capable of, and she gives even the weaker written parts of this film her all. She’s at her best faux swordfighting with her son, or when — in an undeniably rousing scene — she refuses to have her widowed head tonsured because her kingdom needs a queen to take charge. A couple of supporting actors are good (Jisshu Sengupta and Danny Dengzonpa provide old-school sincerity) but this is all about Ranaut, really.

“I can read English,” Manikarnika says dismissively in the film. “It’s a mere language.” This is a loaded line, given how Ranaut faced ridicule and learnt the language later in life, to grow as a performer and storyteller. There is much intent on display, and while Manikarnika could surely have been sharper, its very existence feels like an arrow against cinema’s patriarchy, a broadside against the boys. At the end when we hear Amitabh Bachchan read out those famous lines about the Queen of Jhansi, the first credit declares ‘Directed By Kangana Ranaut.’ It reads like a warning. Heads will roll. God save the queen.

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Raja Sen is a film critic. He reviews Hindi films for Hindustan Times ...view detail

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'Manikarnika' is a Historical Filter on Today's Hyper-Nationalist Status Quo

Melodrama lifts the Kangana Ranaut-starrer, especially during the war sequences, but often sinks it as well.

'Manikarnika' is a Historical Filter on Today's Hyper-Nationalist Status Quo

Kangana Ranaut in a still from 'Manikarnika'. Credit: YouTube

Tanul Thakur

Manikarnika , co-directed by Kangana Ranaut, opens to Jhansi in 1842. In an early scene, the eponymous protagonist (Ranaut) is hunting a tiger. The beast growls and leaps; she aims her arrow and shoots. The tiger falls at her feet, but it’s not dead. Manikarnika had just injured it. The villagers are saved, the animal lives and the heroine proved her point: this, in short, is the language of stardom – until now mostly the domain of male stars. ( Tiger Zinda Hai had a similar scene.)

Manikarnika isn’t trying to change the language of status quo; it is merely confirming – in fact, celebrating – it through a new lens.

Ranaut faithfully follows the footsteps of Bollywood stars. Several scenes, almost existing outside the film, reinforce Manikarnika’s courage and resolve. It often feels as if Ranaut isn’t playing a character but performing for the camera – giving an elaborate audition. One moment she’s locking swords with veteran warriors; the next, she is jumping off them, landing on an elephant. She stares, warns and protests. She tames horses, rescues a calf and, despite being a queen, dances with villagers. She can do no wrong.

Like most superstar movies, here the persona speaks for the person. In one scene, a British officer mocks Manikarnika for not knowing English. You know what to expect. She launches into a mini-monologue: “I can read English. It’s merely a language. Just words.”

When she’s done, another officer nods, “She’s the queen.” Perfect.

But given that Manikarnika revolves around a key figure of the 1857 rebellion, Rani Lakshmi Bai, this period drama was obliged to be bigger than itself. It had to draw our attention to the nation. Using repetition as the only weapon in its arsenal, the film gets to its task. Manikarnika obsesses about “ matrabhoomi (motherland)”. The  references to it – in varying tonalities, in different contexts – repeat a message that is all too clear.

An ideal kind of past is usually just an excuse to discuss the present. Manikarnika ’s nationalism, not different from the present version, is filtered through a narrow lens: it is upper-caste, (mostly) Hindu, and coloured saffron.

Early in the film, we’re told about Manikarnika that, “she’s a Brahmin but has all the qualities of a Kshatriya.” Her war cry is in Sanskrit. The flag of her kingdom – a part of the Maratha empire – has Hanuman on it, even though the Marathas’ original flags were either plain or bore a lion.

In the middle of an exchange of fire, Manikarnika, risking her soldiers’ lives, rescues a temple. When her associate (Anil George) turns out to be a mole, Lakshmi Bai’s commander Ghulam Ghaus Khan (Danny Denzongpa) tells him, “You have not just betrayed the country but also our religion” – a gratuitous reference linking nationalism with faith. (The act of another mole, a Hindu, isn’t similarly evaluated.)

But if you’re familiar with the new Bollywood nationalism, then Manikarnika , by virtue of being historical, feels almost benign. The directors, Ranaut and Krish, when not compelled to showcase the protagonist’s heroics, show promise. They have a sharp eye for scale – many scenes, especially those set in palaces or battlefields, are shot from a low, tilted angle, magnifying the grandeur.

Some of the dialogues are deliciously melodramatic: rhythmic lines exploding with pride. The sets look opulent, the lighting is controlled, making the mundane theatrical. However, amid the loud declarations and clarion calls, the quiet confidence of a few scenes takes you by surprise, especially one set in the library of Maharaja Gangadhar Rao (Jisshu Sengupta), Lakshmi Bai’s husband, who uses a mechanical lift, elevating her to her favourite book kept on a high shelf.

These understated moments though are, at best, minor distractions. Melodrama lifts this film, especially during the war sequences, but often sinks it as well. There are many contrived scenes and superfluous songs, rendering Manikarnika uneven and bloated. A film with a predictable storyline, and populist themes, needed much more. But even when this movie is falling apart, Ranaut stands convinced and unfettered, confidently commanding the scenes, delivering a powerful performance.

All of this makes sense. Ranaut, considered the vocal troublemaker in Bollywood, hasn’t been whole-heartedly accepted by the industry. She talks about not needing the Khans, calls out the industry’s nepotism and picks fights on TV shows. Unlike her peers, Ranaut, the outsider, isn’t an automatic choice for many roles.

Patriotism, on the other hand, is an equal opportunity employer. Bollywood maybe opportunistic and spineless, but its members, no matter how divided, at least agree on how to market and monetise their country. This does tell us a few things about them, but more crucially reveals what they think about their audience.

Deccan Chronicle

Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi movie review Rani Laxmi Bai deserved better

Deccan Chronicle | Suparna Sharma

The problem is in the film's writing, and direction. There is no fluidity to the story-telling.

There are several sword fight, battle scenes in Manikarnika and all are choreographed beautifully. Kangana is often at the centre of these and she's ferocious, nimble and believable.

There are several sword fight, battle scenes in Manikarnika and all are choreographed beautifully. Kangana is often at the centre of these and she's ferocious, nimble and believable.

Cast: Kangana Ranaut, Richard Keep, Danny Denzongpa, Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub, Jisshu Sengupta, Atul Kulkarni, Suresh Oberoi, Kulbhushan Kharbanda Director: Kangana Ranaut & Radha Krishna Jagarlamudi

It’s a crying shame, really, that Bollywood has finally made a movie about the only female sangrami considered worthy of the epithet "Mardani", but it’s come in this season of shameless gratification and appeasement.

Rani Laxmi Bai deserved better. At the very least she deserved not to become yet another accessory in the fictitious narrative being spun to burnish the haughty claims of valour and patriotism of a political party in pursuit of power. But then, Bollywood has often dived to crawl on all fours when asked to smile and take a selfie.

Despite that, despite the fact that this film does disservice to a very special episode of our history, Rani Laxmi Bai nee Manikarnika, as played by Kangana Ranaut, stands fierce and tall in a film whose sets have a warm, glamorous, seductive glow, but whose story and screenplay are like a catalogue of trite Bollywood cliches, complete with stock characters.

If all the characters around Laxmi Bai in the movie had been replaced by cardboard cutouts, the viewing experience would be no different.

Manikarnika, as written by K.V. Vijayendra Prasad (of Baahubali: The Beginning fame), and Prasoon Joshi (Censor Board chief), does its best to reduce Jhansi to a political metaphor for a very saffron Akhand Bharat, but Kangana, with her power-packed swag, keeps grabbing the film, making it her own.

Kangana plays her character here — as she does often — with a tinge of very real, very feminine vulnerability. She begins by projecting latent courage as Manikarnika’s primal, driving force till it begins to exude from every gesture and pore of Rani Laxmi Bai.

Kangana walks through the film, at times in slow-mo, at times with the camera glancing at her reverentially from below, with stirring authority and control. Even while delivering long, difficult dialogue, she creates definitive, iconic cinematic moments that will remain ingrained in your brain forever.

As will, sadly, the film’s penchant for propaganda, solely for the benefit of the incumbents of Raisina Hill.

Manikarnika, born in a Marathi Brahmin family in Varanasi in 1828, is introduced by The Voice, and then by creatures big and small — a pandit, a lion, aam janta… They speak of her key traits as she aims her bow at a tiger.

Though we are distracted by the long, flowing pallu of her saree, we get the drift: She’s fierce, but just. She’s a warrior, but won’t kill without reason. She’s a  protector and destroyer. She’s destined to be a legend.

One of Jhansi’s mantris, Dixitji (Kulbhushan Kharbanda), sees in her all the qualities required of the maharani of his princely state around which the men of East India Company are circling, sniffing for a way in. He takes the marriage proposal to Peshwa of Bithor (Suresh Oberoi), who is like her father, and both men watch with doe-eyed admiration as she beats her teacher, Tatya Tope (Atul Kulkarni), and two others in a round of talwar-baazi.

The man she is to marry, Gangadhar Rao (Jisshu Sengupta), the maharaj of Jhansi, is more of an arts and crafts guy who wears choodiyan (bangles) as a mark of his shameful weakness for failing to confront the Brits.

He also seems clueless that his cousin, Sadashi (Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub), is conniving with angrez log for a shot at his throne.  

Rani Laxmi Bai begins to chart Jhansi’s course as soon as she arrives, first by taming a paglet horse, and then by confronting a badtameez East India official. Given that the Brits are nasty, greedy, corrupt, malevolent, the film now turns into a series of clashes, including bloody battles, where even if Rani Laxmi Bai loses, she emerges as the winner — morally.

General Hugh Rose (Richard Keep) is specially summoned to fight her and capture Jhansi. But he is so shaken by her bravely that he wakes up sweating and screaming at night because she gives him darshan in his dreams as the angry, blood-thirsty Kali Ma.

In between happy times and personal tragedy, Rani Laxmi Bai established her political leanings — she’s a cow rakshak, is loathe to the idea of English becoming our matra bhasha — as well as her feminist credentials. She shuns not just the cruel rituals of widowhood, but even smears a young widow with red kumkum while getting women battle-ready.

At least in this, Kangana Ranaut’s Manikarnika beats Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Padmavati hollow. This one would rather die fighting, than lead a battalion of women to Sati.

Manikarnika takes its time to wind its way to the 1857 mutiny in Barrakpore over greased cartridges, to finally arrive at the battle of Kotah-Ki-Sarai in 1858. By this time fight fatigue had set in...

2019 may well be the year in which we have to start rating movies not on their cinematic worth, but on their loyalty to the Hindutva agenda.

It’s impossible to miss Manikarnika’s political leanings and agenda. In fact there are times when it becomes rather crassly obvious, like when some characters abuse Maharaj Scindia, with the emphasis being on the royal surname.

The film keeps going to bizarre lengths to embroider around Manikarnika a Naya Bharat where all that is Hindu is good, worthy, patriotic, and all that is not Hindu is alien, antagonistic, and must be destroyed.

So, beef eating and talking in English is bad. And not the royal Hindu gaddar, but a much lower-down-the-ladder Muslim gaddar is read out instructions of how those who are not Hindus must behave.

The film is so devoted to its cause that it assumes we all are mildly stupid. Manikarnika repeatedly talks of how doing raj is bad, but doing seva is good, despite the fact that these platitudes come from kings and queens who are not democratically elected, but pass on the throne from one generation of the family to another like an heirloom.

Of course as a nation we must celebrate and take pride in our heroes. But when the stories of their sacrifice get turned into a hollow Trojan horse, hiding insidious political messaging in its belly that is let out bit by bit, we should be alarmed.

We should be alarmed as hell when a nation’s mainstream, popular cinema devotes itself with new-found vigour and zeal to spend its monies and creative energy on stitching together a story just so it can unleash propaganda that’s so obviously slanted to one party, one ideology.

We must be alarmed. And we must see what’s brewing.

Visually, Manikarnika is stunning. Its art direction, lighting department, costume designer all come together to conjure a royal, rich world.    

There are several sword fight, battle scenes in Manikarnika and all are choreographed beautifully. Kangana is often at the centre of these and she’s ferocious, nimble and believable.

Yet, after a while, these battle scenes become dreary because they are outlandish and without human drama. They are introduced with hyperbole and are executed in the same vein. We admire them, but remain untouched.

The problem is in the film’s writing, and direction. There is no fluidity to the story-telling. The film’s screenplay is episodic, with each scene highlighting a milestone in the life of Laxmi Bai.

It’s almost as if Prasoon Joshi’s screenplay arrived in smart bullet points, with each scene having an accompanying stand-out dialogue.

While the good guys all speak in jingo,  of swabhiman and Hindustan, all the negative characters talk and behave like the burly, hairy, cigar-puffing smugglers and their minions of 1970s Bollywood and are encased in rather idiotic scenes.

Since Manikarnika has very little interest in any other character except that of Rani Laxmi Bai, they are used as props — to establish the superiority of Bharatiya sanskriti, and to express either shock or awe at Rani Laxmi Bai. Manikarnika is insanely prescriptive. Its dialogue and supporting characters exist only to instruct audiences what to feel about the main character. This is the hallmark of B-grade, middle brow cinema, and is the default mode when the cinematic skills of the team are wanting.

While it’s impressive that Kangana Ranaut has directed Manikarnika, along with Radha Krishna Jagarlamudi, sometimes it’s good to stick to what you do best, and let others do their job.

manikarnika movie review in english

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  • Movie Review: Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi

Movie Review: Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi

Manikarnika The Queen of Jhansi

Manikarnika The Queen of Jhansi Devesh Sharma, January 5, 2020

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critic's rating:  3.5/5 Rani Laxmibai, the queen of Jhansi has over the eons has become the epitome of valour. She's considered one of our foremost freedom fighters. She not only personally made life hell for the British, her immortal deeds inspired millions to revolt against the British Empire even after her death. Folk singers and poets sang songs about her, songs that are still popular in rural India. Whatever her political reality maybe, her personal bravery can't be denied. No wonder she's still much revered today. In the present era, she's become a feminist icon as well. To make a film on a figure so clothed in folklore and myth isn't easy. The makers made it known from the start that they are basing their film on the legend of Rani Laxmibai. It's their homage to her heroism. And they pulled off both aspects. The film ignites a slow fire of both nationality and patriotism in your hearts that collectively bursts forth during the fiery climax. Manikarnika is written by the writer of Baahubali films, K. V. Vijayendra Prasad, and hence usage of Baahubali motifs is much evident in the film. The opening sequence of infant Manikarnika rising from the river, her hunting a Tiger using bow and arrow, her scowling at a British officer through a torn flag, her taking the oath to protect and serve Jhansi, these and more scenes all have echoes of the Baahubali films. What Prasad has done is to reimagine the life of Laxmibai as a heroic epic a la Ramayana or Mahabharata. Through his screenplay and through the songs and dialogue of Prasoon Joshi, she seemingly becomes an avatar of the Goddess who rises to rid the land of the evil forces of the British. The film's original director was Radha Krishna Jagarlamudi who left in a cloud of controversy and Kangana Ranaut took over the reins. Given the facts, the film could have turned into a disjointed product and it comes as a pleasant surprise that it's not. We don't know who directed what scenes but the merger isn't uneven. The war sequences are life-like and are balanced by the emotional sequences which form the core of the film. The rousing background score, the artful cinematography, deft editing and fine art direction all add to the film. Music by Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy too is an asset. Kangana looks to the manor born playing Laxmibai. She channels the spirit of the warrior queen and is her fierce best in war scenes and also manages to give us the glimpse of the icon's soft side. She's aided by a talented ensemble cast comprising Atul Kulkarni as her mentor Tatya Tope, Jisshu Sengupta as her husband Gangadhar Rao, Suresh Oberoi as father-figure Bajirao II, Danny Denzongpa as her war chief Ghulam Ghaus Khan and Ankita Lokhande as Jhalkaribai, the woman who pretended to be her and helped her escape. Today, in a world growing more cynical by the minute, we need to be reminded of real heroes who lived and died for their beliefs. Manikarnika manages to reintroduce one of the most awe-inspiring figures from India's past. A legend gets reborn, at least on screen, and maybe that's the only reality palatable to us right now...

Trailer : Manikarnika The Queen of Jhansi

Ronak kotecha, january 24, 2019, 10:25 pm ist.

Kangana reigns in this epic war drama Manikarnika Story : Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi is a biographical account of how Rani Laxmibai waged a war against the East India Company. It chronicles her journey from the place where she grew up, Bithoor to becoming the Rani of Jhansi, and eventually turning into a warrior Queen. Manikarnika Review : Manikarnika starts with Amitabh Bachchan’s booming baritone where he throws light on how the riches of India are fast being plundered by the British. Within seconds, we are led into the world of Manikarnika through Kangana Ranaut’s imposing screen presence. Kangana captivates your attention in every frame and grows from strength to strength as the film progresses. This is clearly one of her best performances and the role itself lends ample scope for her to perform. From the tender, beautiful moments of a young girl, to the heavy-duty action scenes from the battlefield soaked in blood and sweat – Kangana effortlessly brings Manikarnika to life. The casualties, in turn, are the rest of the actors, who don’t get a chance to shine just as well. Be it veterans like Danny Denzongpa (as Ghaus Khan, also a prominent figure in history) and Kulbhushan Kharbanda or the debutantes like Ankita Lokhande, who plays the role of Jhalkaribai. All supporting actors including Atul Kulkarni, who plays Tatya Tope and Bengali actor Jisshu Sengupta have precious little to do. Needless to say, most of the British characters come off as caricatures, except actor Richard Keep, who plays Sir Hugh Rose. The narrative of the film directed by Kangana Ranaut and Krish, stays on course showing the internal struggle within Jhansi’s royal family and unraveling important historical events during the 1800s. Some incidents like the Meerut Sepoy mutiny of 1857 are used as reference points, but the focus remains on Jhansi’s rebellion against the British. The film employs a lot of visual effects and most are easily noticeable, which hampers the film’s realism. The scale on which the film is mounted gives it an air of grandeur, however, it lacks the required opulence and finesse. While there is enough chest thumping jingoism throughout, dialogues by Prasoon Joshi are quite impactful and applause-worthy. They succeed in stoking the patriotic passion within the audience without being too overbearing. The first half is spent in setting up the historical premise, which takes way too long. The second half is where the real drama unfolds with scenes on the battlefield, intense action sequences, bloody killings, escape, loss and triumph. Despite all the moments that draw you into this epic drama, the length of the film slackens the narrative in parts. The film admittedly uses many cinematic liberties and fictional detours to ensure there aren’t any dull moments in this rousing war drama. There is a strong thread of entertainment that binds it all together. The music by Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy add to the patriotic fervour of the movie. Overall, Manikarnika is a well-made film that highlights Kangana’s prowess as an actor. For a first time filmmaker, she undoubtedly shows spark and potential as a storyteller. Short of an epic, this larger-than-life war drama has enough valour and spirit to keep you engaged in these pages of history.

रेखा खान, January 25, 2019, 12:41 AM IST

'खूब लड़ी मर्दानी, वो तो झांसी वाली रानी थी' वाकई सुभद्रा कुमारी चौहान की इन पंक्तियों को कंगना रनौत ने फिल्मी पर्दे पर ही नहीं बल्कि असल जिंदगी में भी सार्थक किया। अनगिनत विवादों के बावजूद कंगना ने फिल्म को पूरा करने के जुनून को वैसे ही निभाया, जैसे 'मणिकर्णिका' से झांसी की रानी बनने के बाद लक्ष्मीबाई ने आजादी पाने के जुनून को मंजिल तक पहुंचाया। अमिताभ बच्चन के वॉइस ओवर के साथ कहानी की शुरुआत होती है। अठारह सौ अट्ठाईस के दशक में मनु उर्फ मणिकर्णिका की हीरोइक एंट्री होती है, जहां वह अपनी अचूक तीरअंदाजी से खूंखार शेर को बेहोश कर देती है। बिठूर में पैदा हुई पेशवा (सुरेश ओबेरॉय) की इस दत्तक पुत्री को शौर्य, साहस और सुंदरता जन्मजात मिली थी, इसलिए राजगुरु (कुलभूषण खरबंदा) की निगाह उस पर पड़ती है और अपनी इन्हीं खूबियों के कारण वह झांसी के राजा गंगाधर राव नावलकर की रानी बनती है। इतिहास रानी लक्ष्मीबाई द्वारा अंग्रेजों के साथ लड़ी जाने वाली शौर्यगाथा से रंगा पड़ा है। कहानी भी उसी शौर्यगाथा को दर्शाती है, मगर कहानी में गौस बाबा (डैनी डेंगजोंग्पा) की स्वामिभक्ति, झलकरीबाई की बहादुरी और स्वामिभक्ति, तात्या टोपे (अतुल कुलकर्णी) का अदम्य साथ और साहस जैसे दिलचस्प ट्रैक हैं। झांसी की रानी को अंग्रेजों के सामने सिर झुकाना कभी गवारा ही नहीं था। वह झांसी को वारिस देने पर खुश है कि अब उसके अधिकार को अंग्रेज बुरी नियत से हड़प नहीं पाएंगे, मगर घर का ही भेदी सदाशिव (मोहम्मद जीशान अयूब) षड्यंत्र रचकर पहले लक्ष्मीबाई की गोद उजाड़ता है और फिर अंग्रेजों के जरिए गद्दी छीन लेता है। कहानी पूरी तरह से झांसी की रानी पर ही केंद्रित है। 1857 के राष्ट्रीय आंदोलन को उतनी गहराई से नहीं दर्शाया गया है। अंग्रेजों के हर वार को नाकाम करते हुए लक्ष्मीबाई जब ग्वालियर पहुंचती है, तो तब तक आजादी का बिगुल देशभर में बज चुका है क्लाइमेक्स में अंग्रेज सर ह्यूरोज की सेना के साथ लक्ष्मीबाई का युद्ध और वीरतापूर्ण ढंग से प्राणों की आहुति देनेवाला अंदाज रोंगटे खड़े कर देता है। निर्देशन की बात करें, तो सभी जानते है कि इसकी जिम्मेदारी राधा कृष्ण, जगरलामुदी के अलावा मुख्य रूप से कंगना ने निभाई है और इसमें कोई शक नहीं कि इस भार को उन्होंने अपने नाजुक कंधों पर बखूबी उठाया है। इंटरवल तक फिल्म धीमी गति से आगे बढ़ती है। अलग-अलग किरदारों को स्टैब्लिश करने की कोशिश में फिल्म खिंच जाती है, मगर सेकंड हाफ में जैसे ही स्वंत्रता संग्राम का बिगुल बजता है, फिल्म का ऐक्शन, टर्न ऐंड ट्विस्ट, रणभूमि की ज्वाला माहौल को रोमांचक बना देती है। निर्देशक के रूप में कंगना गणतंत्र दिवस के मौके पर देशभक्ति का अलख जगाने में सफल रही हैं। फिल्म में अंग्रेज सरकार और कंपनी के पहलू को सशक्त बनाया जा सकता था। फिल्म में बेहतर स्पेशल इफेक्ट्स का इस्तेमाल होता, तो रोमांच और बढ़ जाता। अब तक ऐतिहासिक फिल्मों को हमने भंसाली और आशुतोष गोवारिकर के नजरिए से देखा है, मगर कंगना के नजरिए में खूबसूरती और बहादुरी दोनों झलकती है। कई दृश्य और संवाद ताली पीटने पर मजबूर कर देते हैं। मातृभूमि के लिए मर-मिटनेवाले प्रसून जोशी के संवाद जोश भर देते हैं। पर्दे पर कंगना की फायर ब्रैंड परफॉर्मेंस को देखकर लगता है कि मणिकर्णिका ,झांसी की रानी लक्ष्मीबाई का रोल उन्हीं के लिए बना था। उनके निर्देशन और अभिनय को लेकर तरह-तरह के कयास लगाए जा रहे थे, मगर अपने अभूतपूर्व अंदाज से उन्होंने जता दिया कि उस रोल के लिए वे हर तरह से उपयुक्त हैं। इसे अगर उनके करियर की उत्कृष्ट परफॉर्मेंस कहा जाए, तो गलत नहीं होगा। किशोरी के रूप में वे निहायत खूबसूरत और दिलकश लगी हैं, मगर रणभूमि पर योद्धा के रूप में उन्होंने उसी चपलता के साथ दुश्मनों से लोहा लिया है। कंगना ने किरदार के बॉडी लैंग्वेज, डायलॉग डिलीवरी और ऐक्शन दृश्यों पर कड़ी मेहनत की है। झलकारीबाई के रूप में अंकिता लोखंडे का मूवी डेब्यू प्रभावशाली रहा है। उन्हें और ज्यादा स्क्रीन स्पेस दिया जाना चाहिए था। गौस बाबा के रूप में डैनी डेंगजोंग्पा को एक अर्से बाद पर्दे पर देखना अच्छा लगा। अन्य भूमिकाओं में कुलभूषण खरबंदा, सुरेश ओबेरॉय, रिचर्ड कीप, जिस्सु सेनगुप्ता ने अपनी भूमिकाओं के साथ न्याय किया है। जीशान अयूब को बहुत मौके नहीं मिले। शंकर-अहसान-लॉय के संगीत में प्रसून जोशी के लिखे 'बोलो कब प्रतिकार करोगे', 'विजयी भव', 'डंकीला', 'भारत' जैसे गाने फिल्म के विषय के अनुरूप बन पड़े हैं। क्यों देखें - इस गणतंत्र दिवस पर देशभक्ति का तोहफा समझकर इस फिल्म को देखने जरूर जाएं।

Kunal Guha, January 25, 2019, 1:03 AM IST

Even before she was crowned queen, a scene finds the film’s eponymous female warrior in the wilderness with her bow arched and gaze fixed on a rustling figure in the bushes. Her target is a tiger who is about to prey on a defenseless herbivore. The scene plays out like a NatGeo classic — the striped predator takes his time before suddenly springing into action. Just when he makes the final pounce with a ferocious growl, an arrow propels with a whoosh to take him down. But the show isn’t over yet. The injured beast struggles back on his feet and limps towards his assailant for redemption — the arrow sticking out of his neck all along. The fearless female lowers her weapon and receives this oncoming attack with a calm demeanour. The tiger charges again and makes a final dive only to collapse at his assailant’s feet. This is when someone from the crowd gathered to witness this encounter leaps forward with medicinal plants which the archer then squeezes into the tiger’s wound. The idea, she says, was never to harm the animal but only to keep him from harming others. This introduction of the valiant warrior rani is deliberate. It is an attempt to cut her as leader who believes in protecting her people but not at the cost of sacrificing someone who can be neutralised and set aside. The film opens at a time when most Indian royalty were forced to kiss the imperial ring. When a minister (Kulbushan Kharbanda) from the Jhansi royal court learns of a brave young girl who had been trained by the Peshwas, he feels she would make an ideal match for his king (Jisshu Sengupta). “It would be the best for Jhansi,” he tells the king’s widowed mother. And thus, Manikarnika (Kangana Ranaut) is crowned the queen of Jhansi and renamed Laxmibai. Soon enough, the Company backed by the British government trains its sights on Jhansi and decides to infiltrate the fortified state. But even while the King doesn’t entirely oppose the Company, he’s eliminated along with his heir, leaving Laxmi to helm the state. The warrior queen decides to take on the Raj but with limited resources at her disposal, it’s only a matter of time before she’s condemned from her palace. But this barely silences the sword-wielding rani who even dried her wedding mehendi while taming a wild horse. The film speeds up when Laxmi begins forging alliances and building her army to take on the Raj. It would be unfair to assess period dramas with a standard set of metrics. But when it comes to depicting an incredible historical figure such as the Rani of Jhansi on the big screen, one would have specific expectations. Firstly, does the account stay true to the particulars? Now, this one’s debatable as historians are often divided over which war actually claimed the resolute rani. But then, the disclaimer states that certain “cinematic liberties have been sought for dramatizing the historical events” so this one can be ignored. But are the makers able to render the valiant queen’s glorious selfless feats into a thrilling watch, despite the fact that there’s little that would surprise history buffs? For many, the film begins in the second half, as most of the first half is invested in establishing character traits, tensions and equations prevalent at the time. And the patriotic fervour too only rises post-interval when the rani here goes on a rampage against an equally unflinching and deceptive opponent. Ranaut cuts an impressive queen here. Her ability to internalise her character’s mind and manner is evident in every frame. Often, she conveys more with her eyes than with dialogue (which often misses the spot). Managing the leaps like a ninja and slaying it like a samurai, she’s the desi Wonder Woman we deserve. Doubling up as a director along with Radha Krishna Jagarlamudi, she ensures this one hits the spot and doesn’t turn into a jingoistic hagiography, which it easily could have. From the supporting cast, few manage to carve memorable characters with their performance. Danny Denzongpa is wasted as Ghaus Khan, while Atul Kulkarni’s Tatya Tope is almost reduced to a prop here. Even Ankita Lokhande who plays a member of the rani’s female cavalry barely has a pertinent role in the film to deserve a mention. But most of the actors cast to play the British were surely an after-thought and seem to mutter their lines with uncalled-for exaggeration. The numerous battle scenes furnish the bloodbath many expected this film to be. Action director Nick Powell (The Gladiator, The Last Samurai) deserves to be lauded for ensuring every jab, thrust and slash is delivered with optimal cinematic flourish. From Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy’s soundtrack, Bharat and Vijayi Bhava manage to suffuse the required mood and complement the proceedings well. Manikarnika is a blood-splattered odyssey that celebrates the warrior queen who stood her ground and even threatened the British Raj’s ambitions in India. Most know of Jhansi ki Rani from the poem that aptly described the fearless queen. This biopic goes beyond heroics to reveal a resolute yet vulnerable figure. And even while the authenticity of all the events detailed here is debatable, it makes for a decent watch.

जयदीप पाठकजी, January 25, 2019, 5:34 PM IST

व्यावसायिक चौकटीत राहून ऐतिहासिक चरित्रपट निर्माण करणं म्हणजे खरं तर तारेवरची कसरत असते. ऐतिहासिक नोंदींचा आधार घेत, तथ्याशी फारकत न घेता प्रेक्षकाला दोन-अडीच तास बांधून ठेवणं हीदेखील अवघड गोष्ट. अर्थात या बांधून ठेवण्यासाठी ‘सिनेमॅटिक लिबर्टी’ नावाची गोंडस संकल्पना आपल्याकडं तयार असल्याने म्हणजे आपणच ती ‘विकसित’ केली असल्याने त्याच्या नावाखाली सारं काही चालून जातं आणि मग इतिहासाची तोडफोड करून एक व्यावसायिक सिनेमा साकारला जातो. इतिहासातील अशा अनेक व्यक्तिरेखांवर सिनेमा करण्याचा एक ट्रेंडच सध्या आपल्याकडे आहे. इस्ट इंडिया कंपनीविरोधात एल्गार पुकारणाऱ्या आणि स्वातंत्र्यलढ्यातील एक महत्त्वाचा अध्याय असलेल्या झाशीच्या राणीचा धगधगता इतिहास ‘मणिकर्णिका’ पडद्यावर मांडतो. अर्थात तोही व्यावसायिक चौकटीत राहूनच. त्यामुळे त्यात लेखक-दिग्दर्शकाकडून काही अक्षम्य चुका होतात, प्रमुख व्यक्तिरेखेला फायरब्रँड नायिका करण्याचा प्रयत्नही केला जातो, मेलोड्रामाचा वारंवार आधार घेतला जातो. मात्र, असं असूनही ‘मणिकर्णिका’ एकदा पाहावा असा आहे. डोळे दिपवून टाकणारा डोलारा उभा करताना तो सशक्त, सजीव आणि क्लासिक अनुभव देत नाही, हेदेखील खरंच. झाशीच्या राणीचा इतिहास, तीने गाजवलेलं शौर्य आपण यापूर्वी काही चित्रपट आणि मालिकांमधून पाहिलं आहे. इतिहासाचं हे पान विविध माध्यमातून आपल्यापुढं आलं आहे. ‘मणिकर्णिका’ हा सारा प्रवास भव्यदिव्य पद्धतीने पडद्यावर साकारतो. सिनेमासाठी आखलेली चौकट काहीशी अशी, बिठूरमध्ये पेशव्यांची दत्तककन्या असलेल्या मणिकर्णिकेला लहानपणापासून सौंदर्य आणि साहसाचे जणू वरदानच आहे. झाशीचे राजा गंगाधरराव यांच्या विवाहासाठी मनूला मागणी घातली जाते आणि ती झाशी साम्राज्याची सून होते. राजाकडून राणी लक्ष्मीबाई असे तिचे नामकरण केले जाते. पुढे लहान बाळ आणि पतीच्या मृत्यूनंतर ती झाशीच्या गादीवर बसते आणि थेट इस्ट इंडिया कंपनीविरोधात एल्गार पुकारते. इंग्रजांविरोधात १८५७ मध्ये सशस्त्र लढा पुकारला जातो. झाशीची राणी त्यात सक्रिय सहभाग घेते. या प्रवासात तिचे घरचे तिच्या विरोधात जातात, तर इतर अनेक जण तिला मदत करतात. गौस खान (डॅनी डेंग्जोपा) यांची स्वामिनिष्ठा, झलकारीबाई (अंकिता लोखंडे) यांची मदत, तात्या टोपे (अतुल कुलकर्णी) यांचे मार्गदर्शन असे अनेक टप्पे यामध्ये येतात. झाशी इंग्रजांनी ताब्यात घेतल्यानंतर ग्वाल्हेरमध्ये मराठा साम्राज्याच्या निर्माणासाठी केलेले प्रयत्न असा सारा प्रवास सिनेमा विस्ताराने दाखवतो. इंग्रजांना शरण न जाता ताठ मानेने मातृभूमीच्या रक्षणासाठी झाशीच्या राणी लक्ष्मीबाई यांनी दिलेले बलिदान हा या सिनेमाचा परमोच्च बिंदू. त्यातील धीरगंभीरता पडद्यावरच पाहायला हवी. सुरुवातीपासून शेवटाकडे जाताना सिनेमाचा प्रवास मात्र काहीसा वर-खाली होतो. मध्यंतरापर्यंत तो काहीसा संथ आहे. मणकर्णिकेचे लग्न, पतीसोबतचे क्षण या साऱ्या गोष्टी दाखवताना सिनेमा रेंगाळतो. काही अनावश्यक गाण्यांमुळे त्याचा टेम्पोही जातो. मेलोड्रामाचाही सोयीने वापर केला जातो. लोकहितासाठी झटणासाठी आणि प्रजेच्या मनात काय आहे हे जाणून घेण्यासाठी लोकराज्यात जाऊन थेट प्रजेसोबत एकदम अॅग्रेसिव्ह डान्स करणाऱ्या झाशीच्या राणी दाखवून लेखक-दिग्दर्शकाने काय साध्य केले, हा प्रश्न छळत राहतो. (प्रसंगी ही राणी बाहुबलीसारखी थेट हत्तीच्या गंडस्थळावरही झेप घेते.) झाशी साम्राज्यातील अंतर्गत कलहाचे केवळ संदर्भ येत राहतात. १८५७ चा लढा, त्या वेळी इंग्रजांशी दोन हात करताना आलेल्या अडचणी यांबद्दल सिनेमा विस्ताराने सांगत नाही. झाशीच्या राणीला विरोध करणाऱ्या इंग्रज अधिकाऱ्यांच्या व्यक्तिरेखाही अतिशय बालीश वाटतात. सिनेमा सजीव करण्यासाठी, तो काळ जिवंत करण्यासाठी वापण्यात आलेले व्हीएफएक्स यामुळे सिनेमाचा आत्मा मात्र हरवतो. सिनेमातील भव्यदिव्यता, इंग्रजविरोधी लढाया यांसाठी वापरलेले तंत्रज्ञान नजरेत भरण्यापेक्षा कृत्रिमतेकडेच जास्त झुकते. भव्यदिव्य राजवाडे, दिव्यांनी उजळलेले महाल पाहताना बाजीराव मस्तानी, पद्मावत, बाहुबली यासारखे सिनेमे आठवत राहतात. अनेक वेळा सिनेमाची भव्यदिव्यता डोळे दिपवून टाकतेही. मात्र, भव्यदिव्यता हा सिनेमा सशक्त होण्याचा निकष असू शकत नाही. झाशीच्या राणीचे चरित्र रंगवत असताना के. व्ही. विजयेंद्र प्रसाद यांनी केलेली पटकथेची काहीशी ढिसाळ मांडणी, व्यक्तिरेखांची संदिग्धता सिनेमाचा एकत्रित प्रभाव काहीसा कमी करते. सिनेमाचा शेवटही झाशीच्या राणीचा प्रत्यक्षातील शेवटापेक्षा वेगळा दाखवला जातो. अर्थात हा सारा डोलारा कंगना रनोट तिच्या अप्रतिम अभिनयाच्या जोरावर तोलून धरते. दिग्दर्शक आणि अभिनेत्री अशा दोन्ही भूमिका ती साकारते. तिच्यासोबत सहदिग्दर्शक म्हणून राधाकृष्ण जगरलामुदी यांनी काम केले आहे. मात्र, दिग्दर्शनाच्या पातळीवर सिनेमाचा ट्रॅक सातत्याने बदलत राहतो. प्रसून जोशी यांचे संवाद एकदम टोकदार आहेत. सुरेश ओबेरॉय, अतुल कुलकर्णी, डॅनी, वैभव तत्त्ववादी आपापल्या भूमिकांना योग्य न्याय देतात. शंकर-एहसान-लॉय यांचे संगीत श्रवणीय, पीरियॉडिक आहे. मात्र, सिनेमात वारंवार येणारी गाणी सिनेमाच्या वास्तववादी विषयाशी फारकत घेत असल्याने ती खटकतात. मै रहू या ना रहू भारत ये रहना चाहिये हे गाणं मात्र अप्रतिम झाले आहे. प्रजासत्ताकदिनाच्या पार्श्वभूमीवर देशभक्तीचं दर्शन घडवणारा आणि धगधगत्या इतिहासाचं पर्व मांडणारा मणिकर्णिका एकदा पाहण्यासारखा आहेच. सुभद्राकुमारी चौहान यांच्या शब्दात ‘खूब लडी मर्दानी वो तो झांसीवाली रानी थी’ असं सिनेमाचं वर्णन करावं लागेल. सिनेमॅटिक लिबर्टीचा अट्टाहास टाळला असता तर हा मणकर्णिका प्रेक्षकांच्याही मनाला भिडणारा ठरला असता हे निश्चित. निर्माते – कमल जैन, निशांत पिट्टी दिग्दर्शक – कंगना रनोट, राधाकृष्ण जगरलामुदी कथा-पटकथा – के. व्ही. विजयेंद्र प्रसाद संवाद आणि गीते – प्रसून जोशी संगीत – शंकर-एहसान-लॉय कलाकार – कंगना रनोट, अतुल कुलकर्णी, जिशू सेनगुप्ता, डॅनी डेंग्जोप्पा, सुरेश ओबेरॉय, अंकिता लोखंडे, वैभव तत्त्ववादी.

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Manikarnika – The Queen of Jhansi Movie Review

The movie is great spectacle, but not hooked up to good story telling

manikarnika movie review in english

Indian narrative traditions have a marked preference for mythology over history. It comes as no surprise that almost all recent biopics of documented historical figures have been mythologised. Rani Lakshmibai was a central figure in what the English then referred to as the Indian ‘Mutiny’ – described later by historians in the sub-continent as ‘the first war of Indian Independence’, or simply ‘1857′.

When the Raja of Jhansi died without a biological heir, the kingdom was annexed by the British under ‘the doctrine of lapse’, an arbitrary colonial policy that was designed to occupy the land and resources of legitimate rulers by using an invented pretext. The widow of the Raja, the Queen of Jhansi, infuriated by this patently illegal annexation of her province, joined the war against British forces, was a central and pivotal figure in several battles, displayed exemplary military leadership in every one of them, and held out with her forces till the middle of 1858, when she was finally killed in action at the Battle of Gwalior.

‘Manikarnika’ ought to have been a perfect opportunity to provide us with an accurately documented historical figure, and an iconic woman freedom fighter, but, unfortunately, the instinct of the movie is to simplify the story by bypassing the layered narrative of her arrival at a crucial juncture in the war, and, instead, to connect her heroics to the present unending political recital of patriotism and nationalism. We know of the Rani’s sharp intellectual acumen and her excellent horsemanship and swordsmanship, but the script of the film begins by making us believe that as a young woman she could also take down a tiger at 100 metres with a bow and arrow, and that the wounded animal would bow down to her before falling unconscious. But that is not all. It is then revealed that Manikarnika (Kangana Ranaut) had actually used a tranquilizer tipped arrow to sedate the tiger. This feat would make her a modern wildlife conservationist, possessing sedative darts, back in the mid- nineteenth century.

The purpose of showing Rani Lakshmibai dominating a tiger in the opening of the movie functions as mythology. The Goddess ‘Durga’ riding a tiger, comes to mind instantly. Again, much later in the film, in the middle of battle, with her face covered in the enemy’s blood, actress Kangana Ranaut poses against a background of religious imagery, with appropriate temple music played on the soundtrack.

Stylistically too, the film occasionally jumps out of a realistic depiction of Ranaut’s athleticism, into a form of action made popular by the Ang Lee movie, ‘Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon’. Early in the film, she is involved in a mock sword play with her trainer and several other men, when she backs her way outside and starts ‘flying’ from horseback to horseback, and then onto the back of an elephant, reinforcing the mythicism of a historical figure.

There is an important distinction between mythology and folklore, but even here the film lacks credibility. There is a scene which describes the story of the Rani’s astonishing escape from Jhansi Fort, on a horse, and with her adopted son tied to her back. Since there are statues across India depicting her in this heroic action, frozen in time, it is essential that this image has to be reproduced successfully in the film. Unfortunately, the special effects used in ‘Manikarnika’ to show how her horse, ‘Badal’, jumped over a twenty foot high fortress wall with the Queen and the child, fails to convince. It is just too tacky.

‘Manikarnika’ is perfunctory in describing the numerous rebellions and battles across Northern India that made up a war in 1857-’58. With the actress, who is also co-director of the movie, placed centre stage right through the film, an audience could easily get the erroneous impression that she was the supreme leader of the war. That would be a disservice to the historicity of the Rani of Jhansi narrative, and may even convert it into fable.

The mounting of the film, particularly the battle sequences, is impressive, even though it suffers from some overuse and a little exaggeration. All the actors in the huge cast are competent, but none of the characters they play are textured in the slightest degree, including, of course, Rani Lakshmibai. In short, the movie is great spectacle, but not hooked up to good story telling.

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manikarnika movie review in english

Movie Review: Manikarnika — The Queen of Jhansi (2019)

manikarnika movie review in english

Watch Manikarnika on Amazon Prime Buy the soundtrack at iTunes

As pure spectacle, the historical epic Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi is top notch, with thrilling battles, dazzling sets, and gorgeous cinematography. However, its narrative fails to make meaningful connections between the protagonist and her supporting characters.

The film is based on the life of Rani Lakshmi Bai, nee Manikarnika, who ruled the Indian state of Jhansi in the 1850s. (A note at the start of the movie admits to taking some cinematic liberties with the story.) From her youth, Manikarnika (Kangana Ranaut) was raised on patriotic ballads that sang of spilling one’s blood for the sake of the motherland. She was taught to fight with swords and to tame horses.

That feistiness is just what the bachelor King of Jhansi, Gangadhar Rao (Jisshu Sengupta), needs in a potential bride, according to his advisor Dixit Ji (Kulkhushan Kharbanda). Jhansi is one of the last independent kingdoms that hasn’t ceded to rule by the British East India Company or been taken over outright. Gangadhar is a pragmatist, but he’s not happy kowtowing to the Brits. He marries Manikarnika, renaming her Lakshmi Bai in the process. When British officers come to the palace to pay their respects, Manikarnika refuses to bow to them. Gangadhar is delighted.

Manikarnika is unwavering in her judgement of right and wrong. Her character grows as her elevated position allows her to witness a greater spectrum of British cruelty, and she takes responsibility for counteracting it. Ranaut plays Manikarnika as clear-eyed and determined. Her posture is taut, as though she’s always ready for a fight. She’s only at ease when she’s with Gangadhar, who loves her and admires her spiritedness.

Trouble comes not just from the British lurking outside the gates, but from a traitor within: Gangadhar’s brother, Sadashiv (Mohammad Zeeshan Ayyub). The Brits have promised to name Sadashiv king if he helps depose Gangadhar. Granted, it would be a title in name only, without the limited independence Jhansi currently enjoys.

When the tension between Manikarnika and the Brits turns to all-out war, the movie is at its best. Co-director Krish (more on him to come) previously directed Telugu historical epics, and it shows in the scale of the world he creates. The battles are impressive in scope and require a lot of skilled horsemen and other extras. CGI effects — from injured animals to explosions — are well-integrated, and the fight choreography is exciting.

The plot isn’t complicated, since the Brits are obvious bad guys and the good guys just have to fight them. However, it’s not always clear exactly who the good guys are or how they fit into courtly life in Jhansi or the larger Indian political landscape. When Dixit Ji first proposes a marriage contract with Manikarnika, she’s sword-fighting with three characters who I thought were her brothers–but perhaps weren’t (one of them is played by Atul Kulkarni in a microscopic role). Also present are her biological father and the man who raised her, who is some kind of politician, maybe? She eventually helps one of her probably-not-brothers take the throne of another kingdom, and it would’ve been nice to know why.

There are several female supporting characters who are either from her original home (like Kashi Bai, played by Mishti), from a nearby village, or appointed to take care of her in Jhansi. All are so underdeveloped and shown so fleetingly that they blur together.

This shoddy organization is largely a result of a behind-the-scenes battle for the director’s chair. Krish left the film when it was nearly finished — purportedly pushed out by Ranuat — who re-shot portions of the film herself and recast Ayyub in a role originally played by Sonu Sood. Ranuat is the first co-director listed in the end credits, ahead of Krish, who is credited by his birth name, Radha Krishna Jagarlamudi. According to Krish, many of the scenes filmed with Mishti and Atul Kulkarni were left out of the final film. Perhaps those scenes would have helped to flesh out the characters and their relationships with Manikarnia.

One other complaint is the direction of the characters playing the British officers. The dialogue delivery throughout the film is quite slow, but the British officers speak with an especially unnatural cadence. It’s so strange that I was surprised to discover that Richard Keep, who plays the villain General Hugh Rose, is actually English. I’m not sure which of the co-directors deserves the blame for that, but it’s an unfortunate distraction in a movie that really has a lot going for it.

  • Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi at Wikipedia
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  • Spotboye interview with Krish
  • Manikarnika vs. The Warrior Queen of Jhansi

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4 thoughts on “ movie review: manikarnika — the queen of jhansi (2019) ”.

The movie didn’t do anything for me. I admit part of my problem with the movie was all the changes of hairstyle. I understand royalty has to put on a “face” to deal with their population but I would have wanted some easy for battle hairstyle. The hairstyles totally distracted me.

LOL, what a funny and very practical thing to be distracted by, Jill!

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The Beekeeper

Jason Statham in The Beekeeper (2024)

In The Beekeeper, one man's brutal campaign for vengeance takes on national stakes after he is revealed to be a former operative of a powerful and clandestine organization known as "Beekeepe... Read all In The Beekeeper, one man's brutal campaign for vengeance takes on national stakes after he is revealed to be a former operative of a powerful and clandestine organization known as "Beekeepers". In The Beekeeper, one man's brutal campaign for vengeance takes on national stakes after he is revealed to be a former operative of a powerful and clandestine organization known as "Beekeepers".

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  • January 12, 2024 (United States)
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https://www.wsj.com/arts-culture/television/grimsburg-review-jon-hamm-animated-series-fox-60b0073d

‘Grimsburg’ Review: Jon Hamm’s Haggard Investigator

This animated series on fox about a detective in the titular town is gleefully dense with puns, pop-culture references and visual gags..

John Anderson

Jan. 4, 2024 4:53 pm ET

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‘Come for the Hiking, Stay Because You’re Missing,” reads the ever-changing billboard outside Grimsburg, the city “so full of vice they named it twice,” according to Detective Marvin Flute ( Jon Hamm ). “Then they realized that sounded dumb, so they went back to just the one word.”

The word, and the animated comedy, is “Grimsburg,” a cartoon that is definitely off-limits to the “Cocomelon” set, or even “Bluey” fans, and which might go so far as to put “Simpsons” devotees on edge, although the violence is no worse than “The Itchy & Scratchy Show,” if Quentin Tarantino were directing. Casual mayhem aside, there is so much going on—so many visual gags, puns, obscure pop-cultural citations and pure weirdness for weirdness’s sake—that a viewer might not absorb it all until he or she watches it twice. Which I found myself happy to do. And which was much more rewarding than once. This may not be a general endorsement of the program, but it is a compliment to the amount of stuff that creators Catlan McClelland and Matthew Schlissel ( Chadd Gindin is showrunner) are able to jam into any of their faux-noirish episodes.

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IMAGES

  1. Manikarnika Trailer Review in English

    manikarnika movie review in english

  2. Manikarnika movie review: Kangana Ranaut shines in the underwhelming

    manikarnika movie review in english

  3. Manikarnika movie review: Kangana Ranaut delivers a performance par

    manikarnika movie review in english

  4. 'Manikarnika' movie review: Kangana shines in a superfluous narrative

    manikarnika movie review in english

  5. Trailer review: Kangana impresses in Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi

    manikarnika movie review in english

  6. 'Manikarnika' movie review: Brilliant period drama delivers what it

    manikarnika movie review in english

VIDEO

  1. 'Manikarnika' Expert's Review

  2. MANIKARNIKA Movie Reaction

  3. Manikarnika Grand Trailer Launch Setup

  4. Manikarnika Special Screening

  5. Manikarnika Quick Movie Review l The Queen Of Jhansi

  6. Manikarnika The Queen Of Jhansi Full Movie Facts In Hindi

COMMENTS

  1. Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi Movie Review

    Manikarnika Review {3.5/5}: Patriotic and entertaining war drama, fuelled by Kangana Ranaut's performance Manikarnika Movie Review: Short of an epic, this larger-than-life war drama has enough valour and spirit to keep you engaged in these pages of history.

  2. Film review: 'Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi' is a historical epic

    Rating: 2.5/5 Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi is another take on the familiar story of Rani Laxmibai, the well-known female resistance leader who fought back in the early days of the British colonisation of India through the East India Company.

  3. Manikarnika Movie Review: Kangana Ranaut's Soulless Film Reduces Laxmi

    Rating: 1 Star (out of 5) Avowedly meant to stimulate patriotic zeal - " matrubhumi se niswarth prem (selfless love for the motherland)" - among Indian moviegoers 160 years after Rani Laxmi Bai...

  4. Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi (2019)

    Overall, Manikarnika is a well-made film that highlights Kangana's prowess as an actor. Short of an epic, this larger-than-life war drama has enough valour and spirit to keep you engaged in these pages of history. Worth a watch..!! 64 out of 110 found this helpful. Was this review helpful?

  5. Manikarnika movie review: Kangana Ranaut owns the period drama

    Premium Manikarnika movie review: Kangana Ranaut owns the period drama Manikarnika movie review: What keeps us with Manikarnika is Rani Ranaut, who in her best moments, owns her part, the narrative, and the screen. Written by Shubhra Gupta New Delhi | Updated: January 26, 2019 09:55 IST Follow Us

  6. Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi Movie Review: Patriotic and

    Previews Did You Know? Videos Now Playing Bobby Deol flaunts his 'Beast' mode as he shares glimpses of his Transformation Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi UA 25 Jan, 2019 2 hrs 28 mins Hindi Tamil Telugu Drama Biography Action 3.5 /5 3.6 /5 Rate Movie 1 National Award Info Cast & Crew Movie Review Videos Photos Awards Users' Reviews News Synopsis

  7. 'Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi' review: playing patriot games

    Run time: 148 minutes Storyline: The tale of Rani Lakshmibai who took on the might of the Britishers to protect the kingdom of Jhansi One is not denying the significance of the historical story but...

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    Manikarnika Movie Review: Kangana Ranaut excellent as Queen of Jhansi, film not so much If you're a Kangana Ranaut fan, Manikarnika is THE film for you. If you remember your history lessons, take Manikarnika with a generous pinch of salt. Listen to Story Share Advertisement Manikarnika Movie Review: Kangana Ranaut in a still from the film

  9. Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi (2019)

    User reviews Trivia FAQ IMDbPro All topics Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi 2019 Not Rated 2h 28m IMDb RATING 6.4 /10 16K YOUR RATING Rate Play trailer 2:01 3 Videos 41 Photos Action Biography Drama Story of Rani Lakshmibai, one of the leading figures of the Indian Rebellion of 1857, and her resistance to the British Rule. Directors

  10. Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi

    A legend gets reborn, at least on screen, and maybe that's the only reality palatable to us right now... Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/5 | Jan 28, 2019. Shilpa Jamkhandikar Reuters. The film ...

  11. Movie Review

    World Mexican father spends Christmas hoping for family taken by Hurricane Otis Middle East It is apparent that Kangana Ranaut wears the pants in this period drama - both on and off the screen.

  12. 'Manikarnika' movie review: Kangana shines in a superfluous narrative

    Supporting Kangana in her endeavour are; Kulbushan Karbanda as the chief advisor of Jhansi, Jishu Sengupta as Maharajah Gangadhar Rao, Atul Kulkarni as Manikarna's ally Tatya Tope, Suresh Oberoi as Peshwa Baji Rao II, Mohammed Zeeshan Ayub as Raja Gangadhar Rao's cousin Sadashiv, Ankita Lokhande and Prajakta Mali as Jhalkari Bai and Kashi Bai citizens of Jhansi.

  13. Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi

    Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi is a 2019 Indian Hindi -language historical action drama film [3] based on the life of Rani Lakshmi Bai of Jhansi. [7] It is directed by Krish Jagarlamudi and Kangana Ranaut from a screenplay written by V. Vijayendra Prasad. Produced by Zee Studios, the film stars Ranaut in the title role. [8]

  14. Manikarnika movie review: Kangana Ranaut is a one-woman army

    Manikarnika movie review: Kangana Ranaut is glorious, but the budgetary constrains show and the overall impact is Amar Chitra Katha. Rating: 3/5. Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi Directors -...

  15. 'Manikarnika' is a Historical Filter on Today's Hyper-Nationalist

    Perfect. But given that Manikarnika revolves around a key figure of the 1857 rebellion, Rani Lakshmi Bai, this period drama was obliged to be bigger than itself. It had to draw our attention to...

  16. Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi movie review Rani Laxmi Bai deserved

    Given that the Brits are nasty, greedy, corrupt, malevolent, the film now turns into a series of clashes, including bloody battles, where even if Rani Laxmi Bai loses, she emerges as the winner —...

  17. Manikarnika movie review: Kangana Ranaut delivers a performance par

    Manikarnika is a must watch for the glory that Kangana brings to the experience of watching the life and time of one of Indian history's bravest warriors. Don't miss this one. Rating : 4 out of 5

  18. Movie Review: Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi

    Maharashtra Times. critic's rating: 3.5/5. Rani Laxmibai, the queen of Jhansi has over the eons has become the epitome of valour. She's considered one of our foremost freedom fighters. She not ...

  19. Manikarnika

    It comes as no surprise that almost all recent biopics of documented historical figures have been mythologised. Rani Lakshmibai was a central figure in what the English then referred to as the Indian 'Mutiny' - described later by historians in the sub-continent as 'the … Continue reading "Manikarnika - The Queen of Jhansi Movie Review"

  20. Movie Review: Manikarnika

    As pure spectacle, the historical epic Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi is top notch, with thrilling battles, dazzling sets, and gorgeous cinematography. However, its narrative fails to make meaningful connections between the protagonist and her supporting characters. The film is based on the life of Rani Lakshmi Bai, nee Manikarnika, who ruled ...

  21. Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi Movie Review {2.5/5 ...

    2.5/5 Star Cast: Kangana Ranaut, Danny Denzongpa, Jishu Sengupta, Atul Kulkarni, Suresh Oberoi Director: Radha Krishna Jagarlamudi Recommended Video Manikarnika Movie Review: Kangana Ranaut |...

  22. Manikarnika Movie Review: Kangana Ranaut's Dominant Show ...

    Manikarnika Movie Review Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi is not only an important retelling of history, but also is an important event in Bollywood. From what we know, at a budget of Rs 125 crore, it is the most expensive film in Bollywood with a female protagonist in the main lead.

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  24. The Beekeeper (2024)

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    Begins Sunday, 8 p.m. (or after football), FOX. The word, and the animated comedy, is "Grimsburg," a cartoon that is definitely off-limits to the "Cocomelon" set, or even "Bluey" fans ...