Movie review of Marathi Movie 'Zenda' (Flag)
In my opinion, Zenda does not revolve around the Thackeray family issues that led to upheaval in the politics of Maharashtra. The story includes the events (from real-life) that happened when MNS formed out of Shivsena. The focus of the film, however, is at a lower level. The film essentially talks about the smaller trees that collapse when one big tree is fell.
This is where the movie is different. It is not talking about the 'split of Shivsena' at all. It is talking about the 'split of loyalties' of the party workers, the branch heads and the others. It is here that the movie is VERY different from the political films that we have seen. The movie scores full points from me on this count.
The characters based on political leaders in Maharashtra are very interesting to watch - the actors have done a good job. The character based on Narayan Rane was called 'Sadaa Malvankar' in the promos. The last name, however, has been changed - dubbed out to something else. (For the ones who did not know, Rane's son Nitesh Rane had raised an objection) The performance by the entire cast is superb. You remember each and every character very clearly.
The story is well-taut. One does not get bored ever. The movie is unbiased - it does not assume any political inclination. The movie keeps its focus on the characters and their minds, their dreams and the change of dreams. The screenplay takes cues from the incidents related to Sena-MNS and weaves the story around them; that makes it very interesting to watch. The title song is SUPERB and repeats in parts through the film. The 'Saawdhan' song is also good and well-shot. The item number (which has strange words like 'Ababa Patil aala') looks totally out of place.
The movie kept me wanting for more and there came the spoiler - the climax. It was not even abrupt to set the audience thinking or something. When the lights of the theater lit, I asked my friend, "Is the movie over?" He smiled back at me and nodded. I thought the climax was too politically correct / ideal to look true. They did have a moral to convey but it did not appeal to me at all.
Overall, the movie is intelligently made, very interesting to watch if you are well-versed with the politics of Maharashtra, interesting otherwise as it talks about party workers and their mentality. Don't expect much from the climax and do tell me what you thought about it after you see the film.