Movie Review: Vinod Khanna Shines In Ek Thi Rani Aisi Bhi, Film Is Barely Average

With just few prints even the makers of Ek Thi Rani Aisi Bhi are sure about the fate of this biopic based on Vijaya Raje Scindia. This film starring Vinod Khanna dabbles mainly with Rajmata’s relationship with her family

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Movie Review: Vinod Khanna Shines In  Ek Thi Rani Aisi Bhi, Film Is Barely Average
two stars

In a recent interview to a portal, the director of the film Gul Bahar Singh had compared the making of Ek Thi Rani Aisi Bhi to the making of Raj Kapoor’s Mera Naam Joker as both the films took six years from start to release.

It seems the irony was lost on the maker himself. Everyone knows the fate of Mera Naam Joker and how the failure of the film forced the revered filmmaker to mortgage his own studio. It’s a foregone conclusion that in terms of box-office performance this film too will meet a similar fate though not necessarily the studio part.

Ek Thi Rani Aisi Bhi is a biopic based on late Vijaya Raje Scindia who hailed from the Gwalior royal family and was also a BJP Member of Parliament for many years. The films talks about her relationship with her estranged son Madhavrao Scindia after the death of her husband Jivajirao Scindia. The political elements in the film are punctuated with references to India’s struggle for independence and the fate of the princely states after freedom.

The film is based on honourable Governor of Goa, Mridula Sinha’s book Rajpath Se Lokpath Tak. It’s given for such films that the lead character will always be eulogized and all controversies will be padded up and this film is no exception and follows a pretty linear path. Mridula Sinha and Vijaya Raje Scindia both were affiliated to the Bhartiya Janta Party and shared a similar growth curve. At core, the film is more about the relationship between a mother and her son.

ek thi rani aisi bhi poster

Image Source: twitter/zeeclassic

Hema Malini in the role of Rajmata perfectly fits the bill and looks the character. She has infused authenticity in the character, which demanded an element of elegance and beauty coupled with authority. The sequences, which involve her confrontations with her son, are standout scenes.

Rajesh Shringarpure’s last noticeable performance was as a leader in Sarkar Raj when he was pitted against Senior Bachchan and this time he has proved his prowess again. In the role of Rajmata’s son Madhavrao, Rajesh has put his heart and soul. Vinod Khanna in the film plays the role of Jivajirao Scindia, Rajmata’s husband who had no interest in pursuing politics as his career. Vinod Khanna surely looks the right choice for the role that demanded him to remain subdued and play second fiddle to his wife. Vinod ticks most of the boxes correct. It surely is a nostalgic feeling watching both Hema Malini and Vinod Khanna on-screen together. Flashes of brilliance from films like Lekin, Kudrat, Rajput, Meera flash in front of your eyes. Though they fail to surpass the chemistry we witnessed in their ‘70s and ‘80s films, nonetheless both look watchable. Though the freedom movement and emergency era sequences look a bit tacky, nonetheless they don’t create a jarring effect.

Needless to say a film that has released in theatres in Mumbai, which can be counted on fingertips, has its fate already sealed. It’s no mathematics to figure out that Vijaya Raje Scindia was a prominent member of the current ruling party and a few forces have pushed the film to see light of the day. It’s just a matter of a few days when the film will recede into oblivion but if you want to know a slice of history of one of India’s most popular royal family, you can pay a visit to a cinema hall near you. Just pray that it’s running.


Thumbnail Image Source: twitter/zeeclassic