120 Min. | Biography – Drama – History | August 2015
IMDB Rating: 8.5
Director: Ketan Mehta
Staring: Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Radhika Apte, Ashutosh Acharya
Manjhi: The Mountain Man Review: Biopics are gaining popularity in Indian cinema as it tells the true incident of a person or event portrayed on the silver screen. With Dirty Picture, Bhaag Milkha Bhaag and now Manjhi-The Mountain Man following the trend, it is thoroughly inspiring and motivating. True to its hype, Manjhi – The Mountain Man lives up to the reputation and gives you hard-hitting drama with realistic views on life. Manjhi – The Mountain Man is a true story of guts and glory of Dashrath Manjhi who took 22 years to break a mountain to carve a road for his village – Gehlor in Gaya district of Bihar, India. It takes nerve of steel to make biography of not-so-famous personality who took 22 years of his life to break a mountain. After failure of Rang Rasiya, legendary film maker Ketan Mehta is back with a bang. The director who gave us some great films like Mirch Masala and Mangal Pandey takes a dig into another true story of a forgotten hero and we are not complaining at all.
Manjhi: The Mountain Man begins with Manjhi loosing his wife as he blames the gigantic mountain for her death. The movie goes into a flashback mode showing his transformation from an innocent kid to a trouble – maker youth. Chance to meet his girlfriend changes him completely. Couple of scenes will steal the thunder – the chemistry between Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Radhika Apte, the transformation from loyal husband to obsessed old man and the well-executed climax scene. Hats off to Ketan Mehta and team (Shahzad Ahmad for doing research and dialogue and Rajbali Anjum for the script) for standing out in the crowd. Screenplay loses the focus and too much of flashback will confuse you but the hiccups are only short-lived. Editing by Pratik Chitalia is good. Art direction by Nitin Chandrakant Desai is mind- blowing.
Cinematography by Rajeev Jain is eye-catching. Nawazuddin Siddiqui is magnificent. He is probably one of the few actors who goes deep-diving into the any character with aplomb. Certainly an award wining performance from him. Radhika Apte is getting better with each. She emotes expressively. Rest of the star cast do justice to their role Manjhi – The Mountain Man has cult status written all over it. It is definitely worth watching thanks to the stupendous performances by Nawazuddin Siddiqui, superb direction and astounding background score. Excellent film.