Bharat review – A travesty in slow motion

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Bharat Movie Review:

Eid has come and so has Salman Khan with his new film ‘Bharat’. The last two Eid releases of Salman Khan proved to be disastrous content wise and also box office wise. Salman has teamed up with his favorite director Ali Abbas Zafar who has given him 2 blockbusters in the past. Let’s see what Salman Khan’s Bharat has to offer this EID and will this complete Salman’s hattrick with Ali Abbas.

10-year-old Bharat gets separated from his father (Jackie Shroff) and little sister during the partition of India in 1947. Before getting separated father takes a promise from Bharat that he will take care of his family which consists of his mother, sister, and a brother no matter what comes. Bharat grows into Salman Khan and the film is about his journey where he sacrifices everything for his family. He also searches for his lost father and sister for decades. The climax is about whether he will trace them or not.

The film is an official remake of Korean film ‘An Ode to my Father’. But Ali Abbas Zafar and writer Varun Sharma have re-written the complete screenplay and made it into ‘An Ode to Salman Khan’. The film showcases him as the greatest human being to walk on this face of the earth who has never done anything wrong in his life. He is no less than GOD. And this is also the weak point of the film. When the story already has no strong conflict point, the screenplay is an amalgamation of disjointed scenes and on top of that if your lead is a man with no flaws what excitement can you bring in to the film. Except for a few emotional scenes which are truly heart-touching the film is flat for most of its running time. The comedy is basic, the romance looks forced which is saved because of some good chemistry between Salman and Katrina, the action scenes are for the sake of it and drama is contrived, like the absolutely awful ‘Jana Gana Mana’ scene or the farcical pirates attacking the ship scene.

The film is saved by performances of three stars. Salman Khan, Katrina Kaif and Sunil Grover. Salman is in his top form in emotional scenes and just about okay in other scenes. The VFX used to make him look younger in the first half are good. Katrina Kaif’s act in Bharat is a revelation as she gets a strong role. Her character Kumud is throughout the film giving solid support to Bharat in his journey. Sunil Grover as Vilayat gets a very meaty role as Bharat’s jigri dost and he performs brilliantly and devours Salman in many scenes he is in. The Dosti between Bharat and Vilayat could have been explored more if the writing was better. Sonali Kulkarni’s act as Bharat’s mother is commendable though she looks too young to be Salman’s mother. Good actors like Brajesh Kala, Kumud Mishra, Satish Kaushik are wasted in inconsequential roles. Disha Patani looks sumptuous in the slow motion song but has a very small silly role. Aasif Sheikh shines in one scene in the pre-climax. Others are just about functional.

Abbas Ali Zafar delivers as a director but fails as the writer. He couldn’t narrate the story in a compelling way and in the process of giving a proper closure to the story, he just went on adding scene after scene making the film much much longer than it should be. Every time you feel, yes this is the climax and the film is finally over, the director goes on to add another episode maybe because he feels something more needs to be told for proper culmination. He also goes the Raju Hirani way in the second half with media and TV channels covering the emotional story and people reacting with tears and claps which works sometimes and sometimes it just comes across as fake. The film has been shot on a very grand scale by Marcin Laskawiec which enhances the value of the film. Editing by Ramesh Bhagwat is poor as the film is at least 20 minutes longer than it should be. Music by Vishal-Shekhar isn’t up to the standards of a Salman Blockbuster. Theme song and Slow Motion song are the better ones. Background score by Julius Packman is the highlight of the movie as it elevates even many of the ordinary scenes.

Overall, the film has emotions that can attract family audiences but it requires a lot of patience to sit through this almost 3 hours of never-ending-saga with each scene moving in slow motion as if to justify the song in the movie. The die-hard Sallu fans also might not be mighty impressed as the film doesn’t explore the heroic or badass side of Salman which his fans love. There aren’t many seeti-maar moments for them to break into claps or dances in the theaters. The film has got a great opening and the film is sure to cruise past the 200 crore mark at the box office. But will that be enough to recover the huge costs involved? 

Rating: 2.75/5

Bharat is a Travesty in Slow Motion

**BTW there is a huge surprise for SRK fans which we don’t want to spoil**

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