‘Tanhaji’ Critics’ Review: Convincing Performances by Ajay & Saif

The film released on 10 January.

2 min read
“Solid performances underpin the heroics. Ajay Devgn is perfectly cast as the monomaniacal Tanhaji who leaps first and asks questions later. Saif Ali Khan attacks his role with undisguised glee, and he has enough fun for both the main characters. Kajol makes her small and uni-dimensional role count, and Sharad Kelkar is a buff-and-gruff Shivaji even though his character is reduced to watching from the sidelines as Tanhaji steals the show.”
Nandini Ramnath, Scroll
“The climax conventionally needs to be at a higher point than the rest of the film. But the lead-up could have been at least a large fraction of what lay ahead. The only point that comes even close to the rousing climax is the interval point, which not only introduces an unexpected twist to the plot but also raises the stakes of the forthcoming Battle of Singhad.”
Devansh Sharma, FirstPost
Ajay Devgn plays Tanhaji with rock-like conviction. This is a man who stands stoic in the face of death. But Ajay doesn’t over-express the valour. Even the fiery speeches are delivered with gravitas. Kajol has few scenes but the familiarity between the real-life husband and wife helps to ground their relationship. Sharad Kelkar is impressive as Shivaji Maharaj – he has an innate dignity. But the scene stealer is Saif Ali Khan having the time of his life as Udaybhan. Saif plays the exaggerated evil with a cheeky panache. Uday is an elegant psychopath.
Anupama Chopra, Film Companion
“Given the times we are in, as long as we get an array of costumery, and our noble ancestors rattling their sabres, flag-waving period films will get audiences. Or will they? Whatever happened to provenance? I enjoyed Saif’s maniacal bad guy, which comes off as yet another variant (Ranveer Singh, Sanjay Dutt) of the flesh-devouring, diabolical, ruthless enemy that Bollywood currently delights in. Devgn and Kajol have a couple of soft moments.”
Shubhra Gupta, The Indian Express

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