REVIEW / PERIOD DRAMA
164 minutes/Now displaying
The story: Obsessed by Queen Padmavati’s (Deepika Padukone) magnificence and claiming her for himself, the tyrant Sultan Alauddin Khilji (Ranveer Singh) lays siege on the dominion of Chittor, which is dominated by her husband Ratan Singh (Shahid Kapoor).
Deepika Padukone’s breathtaking magnificence is in full impact on this film, outshining ornate, gilded palace partitions and the frilly outfits she dons in director Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s adaptation of poet Malik Muhammad Jayasi’s 16th-century epic poem Padmavat.
Meanwhile, Shahid Kapoor as Ratan Singh radiates power as he regularly spells out the credos of his Rajput warrior caste: A Rajput would by no means assault a visitor in his home or an enemy who is wounded.
But Ranveer Singh’s devil-incarnate Sultan Alauddin has no time for stoicism or decorum. He is repulsive, the type of ruthless madman who doesn’t bat an eyelid killing his family members, leering into the digital camera whereas he does it. Singh performs the character with aplomb in what’s definitely a career-defining function for the actor who is extra typically solid because the romantic lead in mega Bollywood productions.
His Alauddin, whose solely objective is conquest, is the kind who would slit his personal hand and unflinchingly rub the blood on his face as warpaint. While different characters are certain by code, he’s unfettered, dancing with animalistic abandon on the celebratory music Khali Bali. His efficiency is magnetic and you may’t look away.
In truth, he gives the vitality within the movie that will in any other case languish within the director’s standard tableau of vivid jewel tones, regal materials and palatial complexes.
Coming in at virtually three hours, maybe just a little an excessive amount of time is spent lingering – typically in gradual movement – on the attractive faces of the leads and their costumes, as a substitute of moving the plot alongside.
There is loads of different drama, however it’s maybe not as riveting as a result of the dichotomy between good and evil is simply too stark. Characters are black or white, with no subtleties, and the moralistic tone of the Rajput code of ethics turns into cumbersome after some time. You can typically predict what’s going to occur subsequent.
This shouldn’t be the primary time Bhansali has directed real-life couple Singh and Padukone, who have been beforehand seen as star-crossed lovers in Ram Leela (2013) and Bajirao Mastani (2015).
While Singh and Padukone are electrical on display collectively, this time she performs reverse Kapoor as a substitute. Though there may be barely any sexual pressure, there’s a plausible tenderness of their relationship that manages to peek via the extravagance of a Bhansali manufacturing.
Thankfully, Padukone’s Padmavati will get to be greater than a fairly face within the second half of the movie as she rallies the Rajput girls within the lead-up to the stirring climax, which is masterfully dealt with by Bhansali.
As anticipated of the director, the cinematography is beautiful, however the horrible CGI animals and explosions are jarring and never what one would anticipate of a movie of this scale.
While the movie was mired in controversy earlier than its release, the rumoured romantic liaison between Alauddin and Padmavati that sparked violent protests by Hindu radicals in India earlier than the film opened, doesn’t even happen.