‘Mahabharat’ Review Roundup: Save Time and Wait for Telecast

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By Ankita Mehta | December 27, 2013 10:48 PM EST

The animated 3D film "Mahabharat", which released on 27 December, has failed to impress critics. The mythological film has voiceovers from stars like Amitabh Bachchan, Vidya Balan, Anil Kapoor, Sunny Deol, Ajay Devgn, Anupam Kher and Manoj Bajpayee.

The characters have been designed based on the actors who dubbed for the part. The animated flick is directed by Amaan Khan.

Check out the critics' review here:

Meena Iyer of The Times of India said: "The plot line of this epic, that has always been the basic fabric from which all story-telling in India is woven, remains unchanged. What makes this version thoroughly enjoyable is the talent that has lent its voice to each of the prominent characters. And there's a bonus too because the filmmakers have also tried to bring out a facial resemblance between the animated character and the actor who has dubbed for it.

"On the flip side, the animation effort itself is immature and several notches below those of Hollywood films. Yet the dub effort by the Bollywood superstars uplifts this epic, making it enjoyable."

Bollywood Hungama said: "The USP of MAHABHARAT is that the characters in the film bear a strong resemblance to the actors lending them their voices. The film should work for two more reasons: the riveting story and the superior quality animation [a handful of scenes notwithstanding]. Besides, minute detailing has gone into the costumes, effects and the overall look. The one flaw that stands out is the lip sync of the characters with the voiceovers, which seems to go out of place in a few sequences. 

"On the whole, with the only competitor being DHOOM-3, MAHABHARAT seems to be a good bet keeping in mind that it's being released during the festive time of the year, coinciding with the vacations."

Mohar Basu of Koimoi.com said: "Usually I would have given a thumbs up to indigenous works of filmmakers who are trying their hand at something new but with Mahabharat - 3D I was most disappointed. We have seen way better animation films come out of India and this one though undertakes the magnanimity of translating an epic, I will still suggest you to give this one a miss. It isn't worth ending your year with a shabbily done film like it.

"Mahabharat - 3D was not expected to be a work of genius. I wasn't hoping for another Avatar but I was definitely looking for more meat than what was served to me. Except phenomenal voice casting, the film has very little to gloat about. Don't waste your time at the theaters on this one and wait for the TV telecast."

Deepanjana Pal of Firstpost said: "The artwork in Mahabharat is appalling and the animation is worse. From the movements of the characters to the visual effects - like two arrows going at each other - it looks like a pirated and outdated version of MS Paint was used to create the film.

"If you close your eyes and just listen to the film, the actors haven't done an abysmal job of voicing these characters. Unfortunately, this is not an audiobook.

"The movements of the characters are awkward and jerky, making it look like the mythical heroes learned how to walk from Godzilla. The battle scenes are not only badly drawn and animated, they're also boring.

"Mahabharat is, according to the film's publicists, the most expensive animated movie India has produced. This isn't because of the fees charged by the A-list actors, most of whom waived their fees, we are told. Perhaps the producers spent the money persuading distributors to surrender Dhoom:3 slots to Mahabharat because the money was definitely not spent on hiring professional artists or animators.

"This new Mahabharata isn't so much a kid-friendly version as one made for dummies, by dummies. It's awkward, sanitised and dissatisfying to those who know the epic and to those who don't, it's boring and ugly."  

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