Satyagraha – Movie Review

3 Sep

Satyagraha, the movie that was touted to be reflective of the tumultuous times facing India today was my pick for the weekend this time. Having a huge star cast and with some early bird reviewers rating it 4.5 stars, my expectations were sky-high.

Satyagraha is the story of a society’s fight for justice. Dwarka Anand (Amitabh Bachchan) is the retired teacher of the village school and lives with his son and daughter-in-law (Amrita Rao). His son dies in a road accident and the local MLA promises a hefty compensation. The family decides to use that sum to develop the school but is fed up of the bureaucracy which they need to battle to get hold of the sum they rightly deserve. In a rage of anger, Dwarka slaps the collector and is jailed and that’s where the Satyagraha officially begins. His son’s friend, Madhav (Ajay Devgan) a successful entrepreneur steps in to help the family and with the power of the social media, a revolution against corruption begins.

Frankly, it’s really difficult to explain the story of Satyagraha because it has too many sub-plots which dilute the message of the film. Film-maker Prakash Jha wanted to cover too much that it ends up confusing the viewers. Also, for a serious film, its way too long and I ended up losing interest a few minutes after the interval itself. Lot of scenes are unnecessary, specifically the romantic angle between Ajay Devgan and journalist Kareena Kapoor. It seems as if it was added just to add glamour and masala to the storyline and do not help in the furthering the story in any way. Also, the hunger strikes et al has been inspired by Anna Hazare and his fight for the Lokpal bill, which are still fresh in public memory. When one can see reality, why see its poorly executed reel version?

Amitabh Bachchan, needless to say, is excellent as “Daduji” and plays his role with utmost perfection. Manoj Bajpai too is very convincing as the corrupt power-hungry politician. The rest of the star cast is just about average, with Arjun Rampal being totally wasted in an insignificant role. Amrita Arora though, is the black sheep whose very presence in the film is quite annoying. Thankfully, she has nothing much to do. The music too is bad. There is a sort of an anthem called “Janatha Rocks” which is a cheesy song targeted at the youth. It’s so irritating that you wish you had rocks to throw on the screen. And as for the climax, the less I say about it, the better.

All in all, Satyagraha is not worth a watch. Watching a video of Anna Hazare on Youtube should more than suffice and trust me, will be more inspiring too. Satyagraha is boring, dull, lifeless and too long. I would rate it a 2 out of 5. Watch it only if preachy movies with a social message are your idea of entertainment.

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