Mission Mangal Review & Rating
Mission Mangal: An Engaging Depiction of India's Momentous Success In Space-Race
What was once thought of as an impossible dream or wishful thinking is made possible by the dreams of one person. Man has always wanted to reach into space and that is the reason behind the success of several stories and films about space and everything that is in it. But only a few dreams to make the stories real and that's how the rockets were sent and then the first man set his foot on Moon (leave aside conspiracy theories). The next step is Mars. Earth's distant cousin who is thought of as a possible inhabitation for these earth-dwellers.
India was not the first country to reach mars but it is the first country to send an orbiter with completely home-made technology and at the minimum cost and successful in the maiden attempt. Just the fourth country in the world to have such a distinction, India is also the first Asian country to do so. Around the time of the success of Mars Orbitor Mission (MOM), a photograph of several women scientists who worked for the prestigious project seen celebrating. They are just common women with uncommon thinking.
This certainly inspired Bollywood filmmaker Jagan Shakti to make a film depicting one of India's proudest moments. With the blessings of ISRO and under the watchful eye of director R. Balki, the movie is realized and here we are. Let's see how the film paid tribute to the might of Indian space scientists with Mission Mangal review.
The story framing
The film followed the fictionalized depiction of the event and obviously, several happenings are dramatized. With this in our minds, let's jump into the plot narrative of the film. Rakesh Dhawan (an obvious reference to Rakesh Sharma and Sateesh Dhawan) is one of the well-respected scientists working in ISRO. He was overseeing a satellite launch in the year 2010.
Like in all such films (dramatization, no?), the mission fails due to a technical glitch which was unexpected at that time. Tara was the mission director and it is under her watch that the program failed. But Rakesh takes the blame on himself and he is duly relegated to what was thought of as a highly impossible and expected to be shelved mission. That is... what would later become Mangalyaan.
But dreams, didn't we say, of those who act upon them, become real and Rakesh is one such. He is joined in his mission of reaching Mars and they iron in on the idea of slingshot method. It was courtesy Tara, played by the excellent Vidya Balan. When they ask for a team of efficient and senior scientists to make the mission a reality, what they are provided with are a bunch of junior scientists and assistants to the senior scientists. How, with the help of these youngsters Rakesh Dhawan and Tara Shinde send the Mars Orbitor Mission form the rest of the story.
Akshay Kumar as Rakesh Dhawan the force of inspiration behind the mission is excellent as usual. He once again proved himself to be the apt choice for films like this. Vidya Balan enjoyed depicting the role only she can portray, that of tara Shinde the woman who came up with the base idea of projecting the probe into Mars Orbit using the earth's gravitational pull.
Sonakshi Sinha played one of the younger members of the team, Eka Gandhi. She is a bohemian spirit who believes more in hookups than in marriage. She did well except in a few areas where she needs to look intelligent. Taapsee Pannu as Kritika Aggarwal, a klutzy woman who disappears in between to take care of her injured soldier husband, brought in her talent to the fore. She also provided an emotional core to the film. It is a good touch to have her husband as a soldier on the part of the writers as it instantly connects in these days of raging National pride.
Nithya Menen as Varsha Pillai turned in a charming performance as a young scientist who is newly married. Her character also goes through a pregnancy cycle during the project. She is a good actress and shined in a couple of scenes focussed on her. Kirti Kulhari played the role of Neha Siddiqui. Neha has a relationship crisis where she is separating from her husband.
The other members of the team Mangal are Parameshwar, played by Sharman Joshi in a customary comical role as a naive guy who wants to protect his virginity for his wife-to-be. An then there is Ananth Iyer played by HG Dattatreya. A stereotypical role of a scientist on the verge of retirement. He dreams of visiting holy places in his free time. Both of them have done an endearingly nice job.
Writing and direction
Jagan Shakti's narration focusses mostly on the human drama until the final half an hour. The technical jargon is simplified. So, be warned that if you are a science lover or a serious scientific aspirant, better not look at all the science shown on the screen as accurate. It is done for a layman audience. The direction is just okay.
The writer team which consists of R. Balki, Jagan Shakti, Nidhi Singh Dharma, and Saketh Kondiparthi have also made an attempt to show us with the inner lives of the scientists behind the project. And it was made clear during the promotions. Vidya Balan, for instance, is shown to be a model wife and mom, expertly juggling the demands of both her work and career. It is her multi-compartmental mind and a housewife's common intelligence that solves so many problems for the mission.
The daily life complications of other characters are also given proper focus. Akshay Kumar's Rakesh Dhawan takes a backseat for the most part and this film which undercurrently gives its nod to women empowerment has the lead actresses have their shining moments for the most part. The chemistry between all these actors is admirably good. Just follow any of your favorite actors and their characters, you'll forget all the flaws that may otherwise trouble your... Okay! Right?
The music of the film added required intrigue and the sounds are neatly created. The cinematography is decent and the visual effects are amateurish at times. The editing is sharp. The production design is efficient. So ae the production values. MOM was done on a relative shoestring budget and as Akshay Kumar said his sci-fi film 2.0 has a higher budget than Mangalyaan. And the film is also made like that.
Whether you like the mandatory patriotic vibes in the film or not, the success of Mangalyaan is a moment of pride for every Indian. And the depiction of such a momentous event is this film and you can watch it without any doubts. It's a tribute to the scientific minds behind Mangalyaan and shows the power of women scientists. Just give the film a nod with your wallet. A few hundred rupees well spent.
- The ensemble cast
- Human drama
- Thrilling moments in the final half-hour
- Strong writing
- The focus could have been a bit more on the project itself
Pycker Rating: 3.25 out of 5
Reviewed by: GitacharYa
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Mission iMangal is one of the most highly awaited movies of the year not just for its star cast but the importance of the event it depicts. Mission Mangal is all about one of the proudest projects Indian space scientists executed, i. e. about the Mars Orbitor Mission. The Jagan Shakti directorial is led by Akshay Kumar, Vidya Balan, et al. The film opened to generally positive critical response and the performances of the lead actors getting lavish praise.
It is rated as one of the best films in recent times by a section of the audience. Akshay Kumar is said o have stolen the show and the Sheroes of the film, Vidya Balan, Taapsee Pannu, Sonakshi Sinha, Nithya Menen, and Kirti Kulhari have done a great job of representing the scientists who inspired the film in the first place. The movie about the unsung heroes of ISRO should be watched by everyone. Jagan Shakti and R. Balki have come up with a commendable film.
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