Time Movies' KURUKSHETRA, directed by Mahesh Manjrekar, is a story of war between evil and truth. D.S.P. Prithvi Raj Singh (Sanjay Dutt) is an honest and brave police officer. All deceitful police officers, rogues, criminals and corrupt politicians are scared of him.
The day he takes charge in Mumbai city, he destroys the unlawful business of Iqbal Pasina (Mukesh Rishi). Iqbal Pasina hates him initially, but starts respecting him later.
Prithvi Raj Singh, his wife Anjali (Mahima Chaudhary) and sister Aarti are leading a content life. Aarti is in love with Sub-Inspector Avinash (Salil Ankola). However, Anjali is sad because she has lost 'Prithvi' to the uniform.
One day, Chief Minister Babu Rao Deshmukh's (Om Puri) son, Ambar, and his friend, Rohit, trap a girl, Gita, in a hotel room and rape her. This brutal incident culminates into a battle.
The battle is fought between Chief Minister Babu Rao Deshmukh and D.S.P. Prithvi Raj Singh. The Chief Minister has money, power and government infrastructure, while Prithvi Raj Singh has the support of his family, opposition leader Sambhaji Yadav (Shivaji Satam) and Iqbal Pasina.
In this battle of crime and justice, who wins, who loses?
KURUKSHETRA brings together Mahesh Manjrekar and Sanjay Dutt, a combination that worked magic in VAASTAV. KURUKSHETRA falls into the genre of GHAYAL, ARJUN, DAMINI and several films of the ilk that expose the common man's fight against injustice. A subject like this has been attempted innumerable times earlier. So what makes KURUKSHETRA watchable, you ask? It's Manjrekar's treatment!
Manjrekar may have opted for an oft-repeated subject, but the strength lies in the fact that the film keeps you engrossed from the word 'go'. The director has come up with situations that can easily be identified by the common man, more so in today's crisis-ridden times where corruption rules the roost and the influential call the shots.
The first half of KURUKSHETRA is extremely captivating. The story telling coupled with the sharp editing of the film doesn't give the viewer time to think. The story runs on just one track ? a cop's fight for justice ? and not once does the plot deviate to the pedestrian and crude comedy or break into songs to provide respite from the heavy goings-on.
But the pace slackens towards the second half. Mainly because the scenes get talk heavy. The scenes involving the two politicians (Om Puri and Shivaji Satam) are lengthy and can be reduced for better impact. Also, their joining hands towards the end is predictable and the impact is missing.
Despite the flaws, KURUKSHETRA showcases Manjrekar's abilities in subjects that require intensity. The film has quite a few scenes that prove that the director knows his job well.
* The scene in the police station when Om Puri confronts Sanjay Dutt, soon after his son has been arrested;
* Mahima confronting Sanjay after receiving threatening calls;
* All scenes between Sanjay and Mukesh Rishi.
The dialogues by K.K. Singh are hard-hitting and true to life. There are instances of scenes getting elevated due to the power packed lines penned by this gifted writer. Himesh Reshammiya's music is quite okay. Though the songs are situation-oriented, at least two numbers stand out ? 'Aapka Aana' and 'Ghagra'. Cinematography is effective. Action scenes are well executed, although there is an overdose of blood spilling at places.
Sanjay Dutt seems to be taking giant strides with every film. In KURUKSHETRA too, the actor is in top form, essaying the role of an honest cop with ?n. The chemistry that Rajkumar Santoshi and Sunny Deol shared is visible between Manjrekar and Sanjay, for the director once again extracts the best out of the actor.
Mahima Chaudhary is a pleasure to watch. Though the film primarily revolves around Sanjay, it must be said to the credit of Mahima that she manages to make her presence felt. She looks nice and enacts the emotional scenes with maturity.
Om Puri is splendid. Essaying the role of a corrupt politician, the actor is so true to life that you develop an instant hatred for politicians ? that effective is he! Shivaji Satam is competent as well. Mukesh Rishi is first-rate. Sayaji Shinde will be loved by the masses. He delivers some of the best lines in the film.
On the whole, KURUKSHETRA is an engrossing good versus evil film that has all the masala to appeal to the masses ? winning performances, bravura dialogues and ample doses of action. Also keeping in mind the solo release, the film should keep its investors happy. If you like masala flicks with a touch of realism, this film is for you!