Bhuj: The Pride of India is the latest released Bollywood Hindi movie on Disney+ Hotstar online platform on 13-Aug-2021. The 113 minutes long movie has some of the biggest stars possible: Ajay Devgn, Sanjay Dutt, Sonakshi Sinha, Nora Fatehi, Sharad Kelkar, Ammy Virk, Pranitha Subhash, Navni Parihar, Mahesh Shetty, Ihana Dhillon and many others. The movie is directed by Abhishek Dudhaiya and written by Raman Kumar, Ritesh Shah, Pooja Bhavoria and the director himself. The production company behind the movie are T-series, Ajay Devgn FF Films and Select Media Holdings LLP. The movie is produced by the director himself and Bhushan Kumar, Ginny Khanuja, Krishan Kumar, Kumar Mangat Pathak, Bunny Sanghavi, and Vajir Singh.
Bhuj: The Pride of India movie is based on India's war with Pakistan in 1971 where we have seen Border movie was based on Longewala battle. This one is based on the Bhuj airport bombings which destroyed the Air Strip and were reconstructed in the night by using the local women from the nearby village of Madhapur. It shows the story based on true events of what happened in the battle from the local folks and how they come together to save the Army and the Air force. They need to land a big carrier aircraft with 400+ troops before Pakistan Army with Tanks enters the region and controls the Bhuj Airport completely. During the initial bombings they destroy the landing site and the local people creates the same while the army posted near the border tries to fight Pakistan Army with just 150 soldiers. The story is based on IAF Squadron Leader Vijay Karnik played by Ajay Devgn who was the in-charge of Bhuj Airport. Sanjay Dutt plays the Indian Army spy Ranchordas Pagi who is a local and travels between Pakistan and India to gather information. In the end, he is shown Superman kind of power to kill all Pakistani forces single-handedly with an axe whereas the real pictures, as showcased in the end, shows that he used to carry a rifle.
The movie has a great story that could have raised nationalism but is spread across so many characters that try to show extraordinary capabilities and the story has been focussed on bringing bigger than life cinema for the main artists. The director wants to get all the money back by giving or taking the star power and showing them superhero capabilities from Nora to Sanjay to Ammy to Sharad to Sonakshi to Ajay. The story gets sidelined because of the same as the story goes back and forth showcasing characters across different timelines. There is nothing for Pranitha Subhash - I don't think she even had a dialogue in the movie - it was good this didn't become her first movie as Hungama 2 she had a much better role.
Nora Fatehi is showcased to be spy Heena Rehman but hides her instrument in her handbag as if the minister can't access her ladies bag. The song that is picturised on her Zaalima Coca Cola is not there in the movie and not in the end credits too. I think it was more of a marketing strategy to promote the movie. Let's go to Sonakshi Sinha's role of Sunderben Jetha Madharparya who is a local artist and brings along all the 300 ladies and gents of the village. She is shown to be so fierce that cuts the leopard neck using a sieve in a single go as the leopard tries to attack the cow. There is one scene in the movie when Vijay asks for her help and she is requesting people to help the IAF, and Vijay stops her in between and starts saying a poem. It must be some great poem written by a great poet but I didn't get it as to when all the dialogues are going on smoothly what was the purpose to add poem which Ajay speaks in a different way that confuses the audiences.
Sharad Kelkar is good in his role as Military Officer R K Nair who is married to a Muslim girl in a wheelchair. Sanjay Dutt plays his role just like the one he has in PK movie but he got a little action sequence here. I think all the directors are creating larger than life image of Sanjay's characters be it Sadak 2 or this one. They are trying to pay tribute to him without him even being dead or want to show him that his life is grand and he is representing the same on a big screen too. Ammy Virk is a nice addition to Hindi movies along with Ihana Dhillon. Ammy plays Flight Lieutenant Vikram Singh Baj Jethaaz who is a single father as his wife played by Ihana dies due to some health problems. The same is showcased in flashbacks that keep appearing as each character is sketched by the director.
It's so difficult to make a Border movie again where there were so many great artists and there is a chemistry between each and every character despite the storyline going back and forth. In this movie, there is no chemistry between the main artists but only their individual story is outlined. Bhuj is a movie that has a lot of style elements built into it and less of a story or direction. The director could have used the star power to his benefit if he would have made them more real-life rather than reel life. I think the plan was to launch the movie around Independence day and people will go crazy over a war drama based on real-life events with the biggest star cast and popular songs but fails to deliver up to the hype. Even the action of fighter jets doesn't seem properly done on CGI or graphics team. I think Gunjan Saxena movie had better action graphics in terms of fighter jets.
RATING - 2/5
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