We have all heard about the story of the brave female warrior. We have all heard the phrase 'Khoob ladi mardani woh toh Jhansi wali rani thi'. But we haven't watched her life brought alive on the big screen. She's been a part of our history textbooks. Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi is one of the most impactful historical female warriors from our freedom struggle.
What's it about
Kangana Ranaut plays the pivotal central role of Manikarnika. The interesting part of this biopic is that it doesn't just focus on the war and the fight against the British oppression but also gives a glimpse of her childhood and her transition from being a fiesty girl to the Queen. The period film chronicles her life from her marriage to the time she becomes the Queen of the Maratha empire. The second half focuses on the war scenes while the first half is light and focuses on her younger days. Manikarnika has a majestic scale and high production values that do justice to the canvas of its female protagonist.
Kangana Ranaut has not only acted but also directed Manikarnika. One thing we know about Kangana is the fact that she’s super passionate about anything that she takes up. And with Manikarnika she goes all out. Every scene and frame that she appears in brings goosebumps with her presence. Technically, Manikarnika is a film par excellence. Everything from the cinematography to the background score is top notch. Manikarnika also stays true to the genre and does full justice to the story of the warrior princess. The best moments in the film are when we get to watch the vulnerable moments of Manikarnika, the scene where she loses her husband or has to let go of her dead son's body. Kangana gives her all to this film. Also a special nod to the costume and set design department who make the film more believable and real. Actors like Atul Kulkarni, Suresh Oberoi, Danny Denzongpa and Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub add character to the film. Ankita Lokhande puts a special spin on the narrative of Manikarnika. Her scenes with Kangana are adorable and make the warrior Queen more human.
The length is an issue and it could have easily been tackled with better editing. Also there a few continuity issues that are hard to not notice. Songs could have been more situational and they sort of break the tempo of the film when least expected.
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.
4 out of 5
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