Manjhi – The Mountain Man

Direction: Ketna Mehta

Actors: Nawazuddin Siddique, Radhika Apte, Gaurav Dwivedi

Run time: 2hours

Rating: 3.5/5

The legend of Dashrath Manjhi, a determined common man from Gehlaur village in Bihar’s Gaya district could not possibly have been told in a better way. Manjhi- The Mountain Man not only tells the tale of this indomitable man but also speaks of the innumerable deaths and suppressed stories of Bihar in the 1950s-60s. Manjhi had spent 22 precious years of his life to take revenge of his wife’s untimely death by carving a way through a mountain that separated the village from the nearest town and medical help.

The biography shows how a man, only out of love for his wife could carve out a way through the mountain that caused his wife’s death, with nothing but a hammer and a chisel. The film has an effect of an adventure yet it is not merely an adventure but portrayal of life itself in the silver screen. Ketan Mehta’s direction is so appropriate that one would feel that he is present in the 1960s’ corrupt Bihar where greedy zamindars kill and torture every person to fulfill their desires. Mehta has powerfully brought out the emotions of common men in a deprived village, along with this strong love story and sheer realism.

If compared to similar genres of films in Bollywood that were concerned about suppression, rebellious groups, and a strong will or biopics like Paan Singh Tomaar and Bandit Queen, Manjhi is wrapped in hard facts of sheer realism and carries off the blend of emotion, love, exploitation, and determination perfectly well. It bombards the audience with several known and unknown information of that critical era in Bihar. The photogenic scenery of Bihar and particularly the mountain though is not as beautiful as the Himalayas, but is somewhat alright to serve the visual appeal. The cinematography is not very appealing or attractive. Neither is the acting or dialect of the side characters.

Some of the scenes which show the couple romancing seems very fantasy oriented and hence do not quite fit into the realistic storyline. Even though all the actors could not keep up with the Bhojpuri accent, other than the lead characters, some of the dialogues in the film are really awe-inspiring and grand, like the one that Manjhi says towards the end of the film “Bhagwan k bharose mat bathiye, kya pata bhagwan humre bharose baitha ho…” followed by a heartwarming laughter.

Nawazuddin Siddique’s performance as Manjhi is overwhelming as Nawazuddin and Dashrath cannot be separately identified in any part of the film. While Radhika Apte kept a strong hold throughout the film with her sweet charming presence, Gaurav Dwivedi did a great job playing a journalist who narrates the story. The persuasive acting and set-up in the film may also get you teary eyed at times. The theme music and the songs were quite appropriate to fit in the situation of the film. A good incorporation of humour, realism, love, lust and determination, Manjhi- The Mountain Man is an essential watch for all movie lovers.


Types of Guys…

…From the perspective of a woman. (Some of the categories also match for women.)

The Mr. Showoff

He’ll go on declaring himself to be the best and the most intelligent one. And in 99.9% cases, these sorts of people are fake. They just need attention. They can tell stories and make up events in their minds to grab your attention. No matter what you are discussing about, he will pop in to participate with false and imaginary events. Initially he will seem like a very knowledgeable person but with another deep question you will discover that he was pretending to know things! Just shut him up by exposing his stupid pretence.

The Narcissist

He is practically not much helpful or noticeable. But he will cross mountains to make his presence known. He loves himself a lot, not only for his looks but also for his ‘intellect’! He thinks that he is always right, which he is mostly not. And this man may be a selfie freak as well!

The Intellectual

Pretty much like Mr. Showoff, he is full of information. Even though he is knowledgeable, his overflowing talent may make you ill. He has the habit of pronouncing every word with extra care and attention which makes him sound like a machine with an annoying feminine voice! He will purposely wear a proud and intelligent look- thick framed glass, ruffled hair, and an unshaved dirty sweaty face. To complete the package, he speaks of philosophy and movies that no one can understand. God save you, if he is a would-be movie maker. All his ideas will be based on the depressed society and cigarettes! And ofcourse he is boring, none of his ideas make much sense. (But a real intellectual never looks like one. He is smart and never boasts about his abilities. A perfect gentleman, like our last category.)

The Mr. Dumbo

In short he knows nothing and understands nothing. His language and communication skill are terrifying.

The Confused Soul.

He never knows what to do. Either he’s too much involved with work or with family life or with simply nothing. He’s always depressed and wears a sad sympathetic look on his face. But he may not be so sad and sympathy deserving. In most cases cold blooded criminals match this category of men. They usually weave good emotional blackmails and win hearts of many, and with that confused state of mind goes on a crime spree! They can be serious criminals or just be harmless really sad individuals. It shall be hard to tell which one, until you can actually study that man closely.

The Despo!

He is physically or/and emotionally desperate. He NEEDS a girlfriend or a wife to spend time with. If life provides an opportunity he’ll date 10 girls simultaneously and be his best with all of them. Basically he’s a womanizer, and therefore girls maintain distance from this sort. This genre of men do not feel much, hence the irrational behaviour.

The Nagging one…

No matter how many times you have explained him nicely and kindly that you are not in love with him, he will simply go on and on nagging you to be his ‘girlfriend’. And then there will be one point of time when you will burst out in anger and shove him out of your life absolutely forever. Yet again he might try to nag to ‘get back your trust’ and ‘be friends again’!

The Good Guy!

He is decent and understanding. He may or not be very intelligent but will hold a good heart and hence will make a very good friend or even a lover. He will be loyal and true to you. He is also the one to not judge people and listen to almost everyone patiently before commenting on an issue. This guy can win hearts with his logic and sense of humour, which pretty much many of the other categories can, but yet he is the genuine one.

The Complete Package!

And hence the best in the lot, but rare to find. And even if you find one he’ll probably be engaged in a serious relationship. Or he’ll be too sober to make a move. OR… he may be there still waiting for the right moment and the right place to prove his worth to you. He is intelligent, sensible, understanding, and sober and everything else you would use to define a perfect person. He knows what to do and what to say in the right time. He is the exact model person you have dreamt of. He has spot-on perfection of sense of humour, tastes, logic, music and movies. Needless to say he attracts a lot of pretty women and several male haters! Some dislikes him for no reason and some for their own inabilities to match his capabilities.

Now there you go with my categorization of guys in the world I have met till date. If you have any further addition of subtraction to make to or from the list, please feel free to do so. And men if you think you belong to one of the ‘not-so-good’ category please don’t fight. Someone else may have a different perspective to pamper your beautiful thoughts about yourself.

How to be beautiful…

Can you be more beautiful to others? Well, I’m not an expert in suggesting that… but with what little experiences I have gathered till date, it is for sure that people love to laugh! And everybody loves a beautiful person…

If you can make someone laugh, you’ll be considered as a near important or very important human being among your peers. And if someone holds the ability to make you laugh or lighten up your mood in dark times, you better give that soul some importance, because he/she is special!

The one who listens patiently to all your problems and complains, and understands you, is as well a very crucial character in your life. You learn to depend on and love that person, ask for his/her opinion and gradually become the closest minds.

To be beautiful, you don’t really need to be good looking. You would not need to have large pretty eyes or pouty lips to be beautiful. Those are mere parameters to measure one’s prettiness.  Rather you just need to be you. Trying to be someone else all your life, you’ll just remain a ‘wannabe’. You cannot be someone else. But you can be a better YOU. I guess that’s a better consideration. A genuine smile and true eyes can make you the most beautiful person on earth.

To find the perfect person for you, listen to your heart, but also do not forget to look into the clues and facts that your brain is pointing out to. The one whose wavelength matches with yours, the one who laughs at the same jokes like you do without pretending, and the one, who has similar choices like yours, is the right person. That individual may not be good looking, but he/she’s that beautiful soul you’ve been searching for all your life.

You may not be able to impress others by these simple qualities initially, but trust me, people are not stupid. Okay! They are, but not for long, initially human beings are always attracted to glass and not gold, but with time and experience everyone develops the ability to differentiate deceptive from genuine, and glass from gold.

Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder and also in the eyes of your character.