Prakash Jha’s new socio political drama “Chakravyuh” is a movie that manages to stay in the audience’s mind because of its relevant content. Set on the backdrop of Naxal movement, “Chakravyuh” throws light on the dark future that may destroy the biggest democracy of the world. The less amount of commercial drama and the directors vision to stay close to the content makes the movie an engaging watch even though it’s a Jha formula.
The plot revolves around the Naxal fights in Nandhi Ghat. Three Naxal leaders Rajan, Juhi and Naga are the commanders of Naxal force in the particular village. They don’t let the police do their business as they claim that the government is offering everything to the people as they want to give land to Mahanta group for the construction of a big industrial township. SP Adil Khan is forced to take charge of the region because of the continuous planned attack of Naxals on police and military. In a major operation Adil Khan gets badly injured and loses his valuable force’s major part. Frustrated Adil is all set for a revenge on Rajan and his team. His best friend and Police Academy drop out Kabeer decides to assist him in the operation and as per their plan Kabeer sneaks into the camp and becomes a comrade and tries to assist Adil in getting vital info and also helps him in getting their leader Rajan. But in the process of all this, Kabeer recognizes the issues faced by the people and also about the backdrop of many Naxals. That makes him a spokesperson of the Naxals and when he tries to convince Adil about the issues Adil backs off saying that it’s not part of the mission and all. Thus begins the conflict between two friends and to what extent it goes is all about “Chakravyuh”.
As some people ironically said, it has the feel of Avatar in it. But considering the nature of the subject, there is nothing much wrong in adapting such a formula. The good thing about this action thriller is that unlike many recent Jha movies, it never really lags over any melodrama that could decelerate its speed. Some impressive researches on the entire setup of this Mavo- Naxal groups also gives an interesting feel the treatment. The basic negative part of the movie is the lack of unpredictability in the narrative. If there was something drastic to ignite us against these capital oriented system, the movie could have been more convincing.
On Screen, the movie has power packed performers. Arjun Rampal finally dons a role that has multiple shades in a convincing way. Abhay again satisfies us with a gripping performance as Kabir and I believe the actor should be acknowledged for selecting these kinds of impressive scripts. Anjali Patil is a surprise package and her Juhi avatar was really cool. Manoj Bhajpai as usual merges into the character. Isha Gupta is convincing in her role that does not have much relevance. Om Puri, Kabir Bedi and many others did their part with required perfection.
In the making, Jha follows his signature style of direction and still that preparation is an engaging one. On the whole script is nicely paced. But as I mentioned earlier, the lack of unpredictability is a real minus for a socio political thriller. Dialogs are cool but not that catchy. Cinematography is good. The BGM of Salim Sulaiman is also impressive. Personally, I loved the “Mehangai..” song very much. VFX could have been made better to make the audience feel the darkness of the bloodshed fight.
On the whole, Chakravyuh is worth a watch for its warning. Many of us living in the metros aren’t aware of this great danger that was formed out of restlessness of the poor. I am giving 3/5 for this Prakash Jha movie. You won’t regret watching this compact movie.
Green: Recommended Film
Orange: Okay, Watchable, Experimental Films
Red: Not Recommended