Manjhi – Shaandaar, Zabardast, Zindabad

It takes ages to find a plot that has the tendency to showcase different emotions, scenarios, journey of life i.e. transformation. Manjhi – The Mountain Man is one such story that shares a tale of a man who believes in love, humanity, arrogance, friendship and doing what’s needed. Based on the true story of Dashrath Manjhi, directed by Ketan Mehta and featuring Nawazuddin Siddiqui; Manjhi has an able team to give what audience of today’s world is in dire need of. Let’s dissect The Mountain Man and find out how rock steady it actually is.

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Manjhi – the Mountain Man is an actual tale of Dashrath Manjhi (Nawazuddin Siddiqui) who belonged to Gehlore, India. Manjhi leaves his hometown, in childhood; just because he never wanted to work his entire life under the Mukhia (Tigmanshu Dhulia). At the age of 20 he returns to his hometown and meets his childhood fiancée Phaguniya (Radhika Apte). Oblivious to the fact that she’s his fiancée, he instantly falls in love with her. Phaguniya’s father opposes her relationship with Manjhi and as a result they both run away from there and settle down somewhere distant to their locality. The movie takes a dramatic turn when Phaguniya accidently dies. From that point the journey of Manjhi starts which takes him to places. Manjhi is a journey lived by Dashrath Manjhi and executed by Ketan Mehta along with Nawazuddin Siddiqui.

Nawazuddin Siddiqui has already proved his mettle with almost every previous release of his but Manjhi is exceptional and one of his most accomplished works. His display of varied emotions is unmatched. His peculiar way of laughter after every unusual and weird metaphor is commendable. Manjhi is Siddiqui’s best performance till date. He deserves an award for this movie. Radhika Apte is another under rated actress; Ketan Mehta utilizes her skills to the most. Radhika looks sexy, sweet, cute and naïve in Phaguniya’s character.  The mud sequence between Nawaz and Radhika is beautifully and aesthetically filmed.

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Tigmanshu Dhulia as Mukhiya is phenomenal. He gives an earnest performance, though at times viewers might recall his Gangs of Wasseypur’s character. Ashraful Haq as Manjhi’s father is okay. Prashant Narayan as Jhumru (the helpless husband and powerful Naxalite) is effective and dominant.

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Manjhi is a masterstroke. Movies like Manjhi are not produced and showcased on regular basis. Manjhi is all that a true cinema lover would hunger for. Awesome direction, amazing cinematography, great screen play, fabulous acting and clap worthy dialogues. It’s hard to make people realize that it’s not any lesser a wonder to keep audiences interested in a movie which technically has two main characters, Manjhi (the protagonist) and the Mountain (villain of Manjhi’s life).

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Manjhi starts with high voltage and power-packed scene where Nawazuddin Siddiqui outbursts his anger towards a mountain and challenges to turn it into scrap – that’s not usual! Or is it?

Every other scene in Manjhi is worth appreciating. Indian Cinema has not seen movies like Manjhi. Manjhi – The Mountain Man is a must watch.

I would rate Manjhi a solid 5/5 – without any second thought.

Go watch Manjhi, support quality cinema! It’s by every standard “Shaandaar, Zabardast, Zindabad”

  • Story Telling
  • Execution
  • Direction
  • Performances
  • Cinematography