Bhuj: The Pride Of India
Director: Abhishek Dudhaiya
Starring: Ajay Devgn, Sanjay Dutt, Sonakshi Sinha, Sharad Kelkar, Ammy Virk, Nora Fatehi, Pranitha Subhash, Mahesh Shetty, Ihana Dhillon
Written by: Abhishek Dudhaiya
Streaming on: Disney+ HotStar
BHUJ: THE PRIDE OF INDIA tells the true story of an event from the 1971 India-Pakistan War. In 1971, the residents of East Pakistan were being persecuted by the Pakistani Army, which resulted in the deaths of lakhs of people. Because of this, India decided to get involved. With the view of taking advantage of this situation, the Pakistani army starts attacking Indian bases on the western side. On December 8, 1971 they suddenly attacked the Bhuj Air Base of India, taking commanding officer Vijay Karnik (Ajay Devgn) and everyone else present by surprise. Several lives are lost in the attack and the base is damaged as well. To top it, several bridges were destroyed as well, which cut off Bhuj and Kutch from the rest of the country. With no help in sight the only option then remains is to repair the airfield overnight, with the Pakistani army advancing. What happens next in reality is history, and here, becomes the rest of the film.
The story of what happened is unknown to a lot of people, especially the youth. So this is a great way of giving knowledge about the incident at the same time giving an ode to those who played their part as well as those who lost their lives. But the makers fail to do justice to that. The story is awe inspiring and can give goosebumps to the viewers. The film fails to get any of the feelings out. Maybe it can be owed to the creative liberties taken, maybe it can be owed to the poor execution, or maybe it can be both. But still, at the end of the film you come out knowing about what happened and how it went.
Technically the film is good. In the times that we’re in, it has now actually become difficult to get the technicality wrong. Cinematography by Aseem Bajaj is superb. A few shots have been taken exceptionally well and they leave an impact overall. Editing by Dharmendra Sharma is okay. Music has no scope in the film, yet Desh Mere is touching. The writing is a bit inconsistent and there was scope for improvement. The production design and the costume design is authentic. The background score adds to the feel of the film.
Performance wise the film is great. Ajay Devgn is dependable as ever. He puts in an effortless performance. He oozes class in this one as well. Sanjay Dutt is great, especially in the fight scenes. He plays his part with ease. Sharad Kelkar puts no foot wrong. He plays his part well. Ammy Virk for his debut in Hindi film does a fine job. Sonakshi Sinha has a late entry but is superb. Nora Fatehi is charming as ever and gives a good performance, even in the action scenes. Pranitha Subhash and Ihana Dhillon don’t have much scope in the film. The rest of the cast offer good support.
Director Abhishek Dudhaiya, extracts some great performances from the actors, but because of a weak screenplay, has a hard time executing the film to its fullest potential.