Producers: Ronnie Screwvala, Siddharth Roy Kapur
Director: Arnab Chaudhuri
Cast: Yudhveer Bakoliya, Ashok Banthia, Ravi Khanwilkar, Vijay Kashyap, Ila Arun
Directed by Arnab Chaudhuri and produced by UTV Motion Pictures and Walt Disney Pictures, Arjun – The Warrior Prince has all the elements of an entertainer. The film, which has been in the making for almost three years, depicts the heroic journey of Arjun from a boy to a warrior. It begins with a young prince listening to Arjun’s journey narrated by his mother, who is Arjun’s transgender avatar Brihnnala.
Arjun, along with his mother and brothers Yudhisthira, Bhima, Nakula and Sahadeva, live in Hastinapur, where he trains in martial arts and archery. The Pandavas come to stay with the Kauravas after their father’s death. Duryodhan, the eldest among the Kauravas, is not content with Yudhisthir’s reign as ruler. The difficulties that the Pandavas face and how Arjun wins the battle against Duryodhan forms the basic premise of the film.
The director has not deviated from the original story of the Mahabharata. The film simply highlights certain important sequences in Arjun’s life as he transforms into a brave warrior.
The voiceover for Arjun’s character has been given by Yudhveer Bakoliya, Kunti’s character by Ila Arun, Krishna by Sachin Khedekar, Bhim by Ashok Banthia and Shakuni by Vijay Kashyap. Each being apt for the character.
Certain sequences are captured extremely well. The scene where Arjun and the other students practise archery has been showcased exceptionally well. Another scene, where Arjun showcases his archery skills at the swayamwar where he marries Draupati, is nothing short of beautiful.
The animation is impressive although it fails in certain parts. For instance, the scene where Duryodhan and Mama Shakuni suddenly appear on a deserted island looks abrupt. Another scene towards the end of the film, where Duryodhan’s army is shown in action on horseback looks fake and the quality of animation in this scene is not upto the mark.
The highlight of the film is the final battle sequence between Arjun, who singlehandedly fights Duryodhan’s troop. The background score by Dhruv Ghanekar is catchy and in tandem with every scene.
Verdict: This is a good attempt in animation and hopefully will set a new benchmark for animation films in the country both in quality and revenue.