This is a story of a brave Maratha warrior Tanhaji whose contribution to the land is forgotten by India.
Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj is captured by the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb and his 23 forts were also taken under control. The last fort Kondhana where the Rajmata Jijabai resides is also captured. Jijabai swears to remain barefoot until Marathas recapture Kondhana. Shivaji gets the news of Aurangzeb handing over the charge of Kondana fort to Udaybhan who is a Rajput. Aurangzeb also plans to deploy a huge cannon in Kondana fort facing towards Rajgad (Shivaji’s capital). While Tanhaji arrives at Rajgad to invite Shivaji for his son Rayba’s wedding, Shivaji orders everybody to not let Tanhaji know about this as he didn’t want to send him for a war. But one of his general’s somehow told Tanhaji about this. Tanhaji then requested Shivaji to send him for the battle, to which Shivaji Maharaj resisted but still had to permit Tanhaji. While Tanhaji with his army was waiting to attack Udaybhan, Chultya informed about this plan to Udaybhan. Udaybhan tricked Tanhaji in a way that Tanhaji attacked his own people i.e., Marathas. Tanhaji decided to go to Kondhana and find way for a secret entrance. He then participated in the Shivratri event at kondana fort and killed Chultya as he betrayer Marathas and then he (Tanhaji) was captured by Udaybhan. Udaybhan’s general Jagat Singh told about Udaybhan capturing him and his sister Kamla and his plans Udaybhan’s plan of marrying Kamal. Jagat Singh helped Tanhaji to escape. Tanhaji assured Jagat Singh that he would surely release him and his sister from the clutches of Udaybhan and asked him to fix his sister’s marriage with Udaybhan on the day of Ashtami when Tanhaji will attack Kondhana and release them .. Tanhaji moved according to the plan and attacked the fort with his army from various entrances. He was able to kill Udaybhan but has to lose his life. Shivaji arrived at Kondhana and saw Tanhaji with one hand cut off sitting just to say the last goodbye to his friend. Shivaji then himself took the charge for Rayba’s wedding.
The storytelling by Om Raut is exceptional as it’s told in a very realistic manner without overworking it and unnecessarily magnifying it. It gives a proper understanding and outlook about the era.
The performances of Ajay Devgan and Saif Ali Khan are exceedingly good with both of them doing full justice to their roles. Ajay Devgan as Tanhaji gives a very realistic powerful and impactful performance.
A villain is successful in portraying a negative character only when the audience hates him/her while watching the film. Saif Ali Khan as Udaybhan does the same.
The special effects team did a great job in the film to make the visuals appealing. The background music was very powerful and very well complemented the visuals.
The relationship between Tanhaji and Shivaji Maharaj was also given its deserved importance and was portrayed in a beautiful way with powerful dialogues like “Aapke ek bete ne aapke liye Swaraj khada kar diya..dusre ko jute pehnaneka mauka toh de(Tanhaji to JijaBai), gad ala pan Sinha gela(Shivaji ).
It is very rare to find good performances from every actor in the film. Kajol, Sharad Kelkar, Neha Sharma, Luky Kenny and every other actor did their jobs perfectly.
The pace of the film was good and the buildup for the climax was also very high. All the actions scenes were excellently directed, especially the last ones.
The film is filled with powerful dialogues throughout the duration of 2h 15mins and each character has got a considerable share of these.
For instance-Jab Shivaji Raje ki talwar chalti hai … toh auraton ka ghunghat aur brahmanon ka janeyu salamat rehta hai(Kajol), Teri mitti jazbaat se judi hai ur meri akal paani se..tu jaan de sakta hai ur mai jaan le sakta hu(Saif Ali khan), jab dushman ko hara na sakte ur khud ki haar manjoor na ho tab ek hi rasta bachta hai ..sulah(Sharad).
This is one of the greatest historical biographical films with the perfect combination of writing, direction, music, action and dialogues. When you see the film, the feeling of patriotism is bound to arise.
By- Preeti Dalal