Cast: Hrithik Roshan, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Kulbhushan Kharbanda, Suhasini Mulay, Mrs. Punam S. Sinha, Ila Arun, Sonu Sood, Digvijay Purohit, Shaji Chowdhary, Nikitin Dheer, Visswa Badola, Pradeep Sharma, Raza Murad, Uri, Rajesh Vivek, Pramod Moutho, Sayed Badrul Hasan, Indrajeet Sarkar, Pramathesh Mehta, Disha Vakani, Manava Naik, Dilnaaz Irani, Tejpal Singh Rawat, Abir Abrar, Shehzor Ali, Ulhas Barve, Surendra Pal, Balraj, Aman Dhaliwal, Jassi Singh, Raju Pandit, Bharat Kumar, Rajiv Sehgal, Gurmeet Singh & Sudhanshu Hukku
Director: Ashutosh Gowariker
Producer: Ronnie Screwvala & Ashutosh Gowariker
Story: Haider Ali
Screenplay: Haider Ali & Ashutosh Gowariker
Lyricist: Javed Akhtar
Music Director: A. R. Rahman
Director of Photography: Kiiran Deohans
Release Date: 15th February, 2008
Runtime: 3 Hours and 31 Mins
Jodhaa Akbar, an epic romance is directed by Ashutosh Gowariker. It’s a grand film with larger than life sets and Mughal raiment spread all throughout the 3 and a half hour show. The movie takes you on a time machine to the 16th century exposing the lifestyle of the people during that time. The movie has a mix of everything – love, betrayal, fights, politics, you name it and it has everything to cater your needs.
Jodhaa Akbar is all about the life of Jalaaluddin Mohammed (Hrithik Roshan), about how he establishes his rule over the country and how his personal life progresses. In a series of events, Raja Bharmal (Kulbhushan Kharbanda) decides to collaborate with the Mughals to rule his kingdom of Amer. To make alliance stronger, he lays down a condition to marry his daughter, Jodhaa (Aishwarya Rai Bachchan). Jodhaa, belonging to a Rajput family first refuses to marry him but to respect her father’s self-respect she agrees to marry him. The rest is how their love blossoms and how he manages to cope up with the challenges faced during his rule.
Firstly, Ashutosh Gowariker should be appreciated for taking such a risky subject. Haider Ali and Ashutosh Gowariker’s screenplay is gripping and interesting as it advances. Handling a lengthy film like this requires a lot of skill and Mr. Gowariker has succeeded in it by keeping the pace of the film constant all throughout the movie. Cinematography by Kiiran Deohans is brilliant and the ambience is breath taking.
The language used in the movie is plain and simple. Even the lyrics of the songs by Javed Akhtar are simple with only a little amount of difficult words. Javed Akhtar’s determination towards the plot is evident of the fact that he has given one of the best suited lyrics for this film.
The lead protagonists, Hrithik Roshan and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan did their jobs well and executed their roles perfectly. Their on screen chemistry is brilliant. It would be better to say that their eyes spoke more than their lips in terms of expressions. They both suited the character and gave the character a new dimension.
Ila Arun as Maham Anga was spontaneous and gave a career best performance. Sonu Sood as Rajkumar Sujamal was excellent. Ms. Punam Sinha was graceful as Mallika Hamida Banu (Mother of Akbar). Nikitin Dheer as Sharifuddin Hussain looked bold, dynamic and strong as the brother-in-law of Akbar. Kulbhushan Kharbanda, Raza Murad, Suhasini Mulay & others did their jobs neatly.
Editing by Ballu Saluja is scrupulously mediocre. Background score and music by A. R. Rahman is an asset to the film and compliments the screenplay. Costumes by Neeta Lulla are brilliant and adorable.
There are many scenes in the movie which keeps everyone spellbound and some of them are as follows:
- The bare chested Akbar showing his sword fighting skills.
- The sword fight between the lead protagonists.
- Ila Arun instigating the couple.
- The entire episode of the Rajput meal.
- The episode where Aishwarya Rai Bachchan lays her two conditions.
- The Azeem-O-Shaan song right after Akbar’s decision to abolish pilgrimage tax.
- The fight in the climax where Akbar and Sharifuddin fight one on one. Although this is seriously inspired by the fight between Eric and Brad in the movie Troy.
Now coming to the songs, Azeem-O-Shaan requires a special mention as the choreographer has indeed done a wonderful job there. Visually this song stands out to be best in the movie. The rest of the songs are well-knit with the story.
With the right casting there, a tight screenplay and a soulful background score, Ashutosh Gowariker’s Jodhaa Akbar is a well-executed film and is highly recommended. Jodhaa Akbar is surely a magnum opus and is one of the finest films made till date.