Director: Abhijit Panse
Starring: Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Amrita Rao
Story: Sanjay Raut
Written by: Abhijit Panse
THACKERAY is the story of Shiv Sena founder Balasaheb Thackeray. Bal Keshav Thackeray (Nawazuddin Siddiqui) is the eldest son of social reformer Prabodhankar Thackeray and is married to Meenatai (Amrita Rao). The film starts in the 1950s where we see Balasaheb working at Free Press Journal as a cartoonist. He has been restricted by his superiors on attacking certain political figures via his cartoons. He being not able to work like that, resigns and starts his own political weekly called Marmik. He realizes soon that South Indians have dominated businesses and offices in Mumbai and look down upon Maharashtrians. Through his cartoons and his speeches he begins to educate Maharashtrians that they should fight for their rights and take the reins of Mumbai. As his stature grows and as people started calling him Balasaheb and later in 1966, starts his own party called Shiv Sena. The party obviously goes through its ups and downs initially. But in the 1980s, Balasaheb shifts his agenda and becomes pro-Hindutva. How Balasaheb overcomes various challenges and how he gets over the Babri Masjid crisis of 1992 forms the rest of the film.
THACKERAY is a nicely told biopic of one of the most prominent political figures of not only Maharashtra but also of India. Sanjay Rat’s story does full justice to Balasaheb. The film while parting knowledge about the life of Balasaheb surely manages to entertain and keeps the viewers interested till the end.
Technically the film is great. Cinematography by Sudeep Chatterjee is right out of the top drawer. Editing by Ashish Mhatare and Apurva Motiwale is great and they have put together the episodes of his life very well, but could have been better in some places. The story by Sanjay Raut was good and the script written on it by Abhijit does full justice to the story of such a prominent personality. The production design looks authentic and the team has done a great job of making sure that it shows. There is not much scope for music in the film except for the song Saheb Tu Sarkar Tu which plays in the end credits.
Performances from the cast were great as well. Nawazuddin lives and breathes Balasaheb in this film. He is just brilliant. This will definitely go down as one of his best performances ever. he just seems to be getting better with every film he does. Amrita Rao is good. Rajesh Khera leaves a mark. The rest of the cast does well in their respective roles as well. No one really lets the director or this film down.
Director Abhijit Panse does his job brilliantly. He keeps the viewers on the edge of their seats. He leaves you wanting for more, especially after the climax of the film.
At the box-office
The film has taken a slow start but can work on a good word of mouth.