Bhuj: The Pride of India Movie Review Rating: 2/5 stars (two stars)
Star cast: Ajay Devgn, Sharad Kelkar, Sanjay Dutt, Sonakshi Sinha, Nora Fatehi, Ammy Virk
Director: Abhishek Dudhaiya
Available in: Disney + Hotstar
What is good: “If you know you are wasting time, waste less” is the noble motto that the creators of Bhuj have followed by keeping it around 110 minutes.
What is bad: There are still 110 minutes to lose
Loo Break: I mean, you have 110 minutes
To look or not ?: Even if you have 110 minutes to spare to lose, don’t!
Covering the ‘Bhuj’ disaster that occurred during the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971, the story begins by explaining the existence of West Pakistan and East Pakistan, and covers the brief period that helped the latter to become Bangladesh. The sudden attack on the Bhuj airbase is led by IAF squad leader Vijay Karnik and his team. Taking the non-linear route, the first half of the film reveals the cover art of the reasons why Bhuj was attacked.
The second half focuses primarily on the solutions Karnik and his men come up with to minimize the damage from the second attack, which is about to occur on base. Karnik receives help from Sunderben (Sonakshi Sinha) and other villagers to build the airstrip damaged in the attack so that the Indian army can land to back them up. It all leads to the one final attack that leads us through what everyone went through in the most exaggerated way.
Bhuj: The Pride of India Movie Review: Script Analysis
The story was never a Bhuj problem, and it had all the makings of a masala period drama; the real problem lies in the way the writers Abhishek Dudhaiya, Raman Kumar, Ritesh Shah, Pooja Bhavoria decide to execute the idea. At just 110 minutes, the runaway narration never lets you indulge in the pacing, which is too fast to consume the over-the-top drama that serves as a slider. It suffers from a kind of ‘it’s too fast but too slow’ script disaster.
At the climax, the manufacturers decide to * spoiler * land a plane suffering from a front wheel malfunction with the help of a truck driven by Ajay Devgn. Ironically, the plane is the glut in history, that manufacturers land with the help of the truck, that is, our tiny brains. With the dialogues “Hindustan ko humne 400 saal apne joote ki nok pe rakha hai…” in the first 10 minutes, it is clear the path towards which the story is progressing.
Even Shershaah had the usual army movie cliches, but this whole movie is an army movie cliche. A scene is conveniently recorded of a fighter pilot mentioning his mother’s knee surgery and being killed in the next. I can totally see how the creators wanted to apply the ‘Tanhaji’ formula here by adding masala to an existing period drama genre, only to fail miserably this time.
Aseem Bajaj’s decent camera work fails to survive the damage caused by many VFX bugs at all times. Editing of Dharmendra Sharma is generalized, lacking perfect continuity to dampen any possible intrigue. The abrupt cuts between them give you the feeling that it must be a very long movie, only to be edited to 110 minutes in a hurry.
Bhuj: The Pride of India Movie Review: Star Performance
This was a tailor-made role for Ajay Devgn, which is now a missed opportunity. He is a master at emailing such characters, but unnecessary melodrama eliminates any shock created by his performance. The same goes for Sharad Kelkar, whose character could have been seeti-maar in a well-written script. But here, it is restricted to being smooth and not adding anything substantial to an already boring script.
Sanjay Dutt tries too hard to be a part of at least one good movie after his return, but he will have to wait until KGF 2. Sonakshi Sinha is at a loss with her character supporting only one subplot and that one, too, a weak one. . Nora Fatehi is a misfit and nothing from her accent to her physical attributes works to better build her character. Ammy Virk, despite living a fairly one-dimensional character, leaves her mark with her performance.
Bhuj: The Pride of India Movie Review: Direction, Music
Abhishek Dudhaiya comes to the movies after directing over 1000 episodes on television, and the impact is clearly visible. Lyricist Manoj Muntashir has been credited as the film’s additional dialogue writer, who I assume just gave a revamped version of Sandese Aate Hai but as a poem. But, there are many dialogues as poem, that make me doubt my assumption clarifying many things.
Not a single song in a couple of clicks. The same goes for the extremely imperceptible background score.
Bhuj: The Pride of India Movie Review: The Last Word
All said and done; I don’t hate the ‘movie’ in Bhuj, I hate the ‘movie’ in it. This, which comes a day after Shershaah, only acts as one example of the two types of content that serve us and thankfully many of us know what to consume.
Bhuj Trailer: The Pride of India
Bhuj: The pride of India launches on August 13, 2021.
Share with us your experience of watching Bhuj: The pride of India.
Must read: Shershaah Movie Review: Sidharth Malhotra Masterfully Recreates The Powerful And Colorful Life Of Vikram Batra