Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra’s latest offering to Hindi cinema is Mirzya, a movie based on the tragic Punjabi folklore of Mirza-Sahiban. The film is a launch pad for actor Anil Kapoor’s son — Harshvardhan Kapoor and veteran Tanvi Azmi’s niece — Saiyami Kher. Portrayed as a grand love story which is a kind of off-beat too, Mirzya had raised expectations because:
a. It is a Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra’s directorial
b. It is bringing back Gulzar as a screenplay writer post his 1999 outing — Hu Tu Tu
c. It has music by the epic trio — Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy
But, does it fall at par with expectations? Can it be termed as a successful Bollywood debut for the two newbies? Is there anything off-beat about the film? Let’s analyse the problems with Mirzya first:
a. Despite being a little more than two hours, Mirzya seems extremely tiring and lengthy. The narrative of the film is too slow to open your brains and let the essence of the love story seep in.
b. No doubts about the beauty of the music Mirzya has, but Daler Mehndi’s ‘Oooo Mirzyaaaaa...’ comes too often in the scenes that it looses its charm.
c. The problems with this Harshvardhan Kapoor’s debut is quite similar to the problems his sister, Sonam Kapoor’s debut — Saawariya had. Both these films were grand, carried an exceptional plot, were unlike just any other love story Bollywood produces, but couldn’t interest a viewer. For the very fact that both of these films seem too much complex and serious in themselves.
d. The film portrays two eras — the legendary era of Mirza-Sahiban and the present one set in Rajasthani opulent culture. Even though Mehra tries to build connection between the two stories, there’re no questions answered in any one of them. Why does Sahiban betray her love Mirza? Why does Suchitra (Saiyami’s character in the modern era) fall for Mohnish (Harshvardhan’s modern character) overnight? Why aren’t the royal people of current times — Suchitra and her prince fiance (played by Anuj Choudhary) don’t use cell phones, internet and other tech-y inventions?
e. There’s so much happening in Mirzya — violence, romance, back-to-back songs, transition of eras, betrayal that the very essence of a love story seems missing. When your audience can’t sympathise with the lead pair in a love story — there’s a big problem.
Here’s why despite all of its flaws, Mirzya can be your one-time watch:
a. Both Harshvardhan and Saiyami have given a better performance than what the usual debutants in Bollywood are expected to. Their chemistry grows with every scene and the hard-work can be seen. Full points to both of them for choosing a complex narrative like Mirzya when they could easily opt for a typical masala Bollywood film, like other star debutants had in the past.
b. Even though there’s loud music tapping on your head in every second scene, it gives Mirzya a feel of musical drama which reminds you of those grand intense stage performances in theatre.
c. The film has some breathtaking locations in the background. Specially the ones during war sequences. Mehra’s Mirzya has beauty to its each frame as celebrated cinematographer Pawel Dyllus creates some ecstatic visuals on screen.