Mohenjo Daro

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Watchable

Mohenjo Daro
Mohenjo Daro
MOHENJO DARO is grand and gripping, but lacks depth!
Narrating a love story set in “Mohenjo Daro”, one of the largest settlements of the ancient Indus Valley Civilization, director/writer Ashutosh Gowariker displays questionable history and hardly justifies the need to set this fictional film in that period. However, by weaving a gripping drama around a flimsy plot, he keeps you glued for the film’s long runtime of almost quarter to three hours. Worth a watch for it grand sets and Hrithik’s whole-souled performance, but not for historical interest.
The story, set amid the ancient Indus Valley civilization circa 2016 B.C., shows an indigo farmer from Amri, named Sarman (Hrithik Roshan) who travels upriver to the largest city, Mohenjo-daro. There he falls in love with a beautiful woman named Chaani (Pooja Hegde) who is regarded in the city as the symbol of Mother Sindhu's grace and blessing. But Sarman soon falls prey to the ill-intent of the city’s prime leader Maham (Kabir Bedi) and his son Moonja (Arunoday Singh) who are seizing power and starting to rule Mohenjo Daro as an empire. To win Chaani, Sarman must defeat Maham and rouse the people to save their city.
What’s unimaginable is the flimsiness of the script, considering it comes from the famed pen of Ashutosh Gowariker. His last film with Hrithik, Jodha Akbar was a masterpiece – a visual delight with great narrative heft. But here, he seems to be totally out of ideas. The plot merely passes as an average love story, which is neither exciting nor intriguing. Predictability is still acceptable, but such laziness in writing, that too when you’re placing the film in an era which in itself is highly fascinating, is sheer disappointment.
Apart from the magnificent sets and disputable costumes, Gowariker hardly puts in any effort in the film’s content. He feels the need to spoon feed every little aspect of the plot, which again is irritating at times. Even the CGI towards the end is too tacky, which makes you believe the makers were in a hurry wanted to wrap the film up. The facts and logic are dubitable here and I feel (and I’m sure you’ll feel the same too when you watch it) this subpar plot could’ve fitted into any era, and there was no need whatsoever for Gowariker to place it in Mohenjodaro. It definitely was a futile exercise.
Now coming to the positives, the film’s scale and grandeur is overwhelming. Each scene is picturised gorgeously and visually the film enraptures you. The very first scene, set in Bhedaghat, Jabalpur (M.P.), is a sight to behold. The film’s pacing, very unlike Gowariker, is decent and the screenplay is extremely riveting. Despite being unconvincing, the film succeeds in holding your attention for all of its long runtime. The background score is powerful and the song TU HAI is pleasing to the ears.
Talking of the actors, the film rests solely on the dependable shoulders of the highly talented Hrithik Roshan. His expressions are immaculate and every move of his is magnetic. The film is a mess if you take away the Hrithik factor from it. He virtually holds the film together. Pooja Hegde is promising, but the remaining cast is a bunch of non-actors who are clearly the wrong choice for the characters they play.
In all, MOHENJO DARO is at best a decent one-time watch, which ensures a reasonably entertaining outing this weekend for you. Not special in any way, but watchable!
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