Bollywood has entered a new era of cinema, where if its heroes are not men in uniforms of Call of Duty: Modern Warfarethey feature characters from the age of empires. The only problem is, at least age of empires tried to be a bit specific.
1. Samrat Prithviraj
The latest in a long line of historical fanfiction that Bollywood is churning out these days, has Prithviraj slaying Muhammad of Ghor. While the film indulges in many fantasies as far removed from the story as Akshay Kumar is from actresses her own age, one of the biggest blunders it makes is messing up the timeline. Ghori died in 1206, while Prithviraj died in 1192.
While the film claims to be an accurate historical account of what happened at the Battle of Saragrahi, the truth is far from correct. Mind you, there is no doubt that 21 soldiers of the 36th Sikh Regiment at Saragarhi in 1897 gave their lives in the line of duty. There are many inaccuracies in the film.
In the film, a burning Gurmukh Singh emerges from the tower, grabs Gul Badshah, the leader of the Orakzais, and sets his gunpowder stash on fire, killing him. But Gul Badshah was not actually killed in battle. Neither did Mullah Hadda, the cleric according to the history books, called for jihad against the British in the Tirah Valley. However, in the movie, he is stabbed to death by Akshay Kumar’s character. In fact, that’s just one of the many gross violations of history the film indulges in.
You might remember this movie from when half of the country’s angry mobs wanted to behead Deepika Padukone. Yes, this movie itself. Again, the depiction of Khilji in the film is highly Islamophobic and casts him as a barbarian, which is contrary to the evidence. Oh, and here’s the real kicker.
While Khilji is an actual historical figure, most historians are of the opinion that Padmaavati didn’t even exist, to begin with. The character comes from an epic poem, Padmaavatby the 16th century poet Malik Muhammad Jayasi, who himself called the work fiction.
The film can be quite entertaining to be honest and is the peak Bollywood of the 2000s. But the portrayal of Asokathe kingdom of Maurya, Buddhism and Asoka’s love interest, Kaurawaki is about as real as the Undertaker dying and coming back from the dead 7 times in WWE.
Another period drama with a big budget and liberal bashing of historical Muslim figures, this Sanjay Dutt film really blurs the already blurred lines between fact and fiction in this country. For instance, Abdullah, played by Sanjay Dutt is introduced as a ruthless warlord who enjoyed using the Kohinoor to crush the faces and heads of people he killed. It is not a historical account of what ever happened.
History without context is a recipe for propaganda. For example, Abdali is portrayed as an intruder with a thirst for blood, which technically isn’t wrong, but that was medieval times and looting and looting was basically the law of the land. The ‘non-intruders’ from one part of India used to wage war and murder innocent people from other parts of the country at the time because the concept of an ‘India’ did not did not exist at the time.
6. Tanhaji: The Unsung Warrior
In a market where religious nationalism has become an ingredient to compensate for the lack of research, scripts and good actors, Ajay Devgn has become a prime candidate to replace Akshay Kumar, should the Indo-Canadian actor choose to pursue a career. full time. as a political interviewer.
To be fair to the film, it provides a disclaimer at the beginning about some changed stories and personalities. But the depiction of the Mughals as invaders is a recurring theme in the film, despite stark historical evidence pointing out that most of them, except for its founder, were born in India to Indian parents, often sharing direct lineages with old Indian kings.
At the start of the film, we are told that pitting a Hindu (Rajput) against a Hindu (Maratha) was Aurangzeb’s greatest trick. But without context you wouldn’t know it was a century after Rajput assimilation into Mughal administration mansabdari system. The film shows Devgn sitting next to a bhagwadhwaja with an Om on it. It only serves one purpose, to make Hindus look visibly Hindu, as the Maratha flag has never printed anything of such a pattern.
7. Jodhaa Akbar
Whereas Jodhaa Akbar is not a violent expression of the patriotism of its filmmaker, it takes far too many liberties with its characters. To begin with, Akbar did not have a wife named Jodhaa Bai. Many historians have even claimed that Jodhaa was married to Jehangir, the son of Akbar. But historical distortions never let Ashutosh Gowarikar shy away from doing period dramas.
At this point, if I start to poke holes in every period drama made in the past 5-6 years, you’ll have to refresh this page too many times to get to the end of the article. Oh, and don’t even think for a second that the historical inaccuracies in the films mentioned above are the only inaccuracies they have. But that’s just the country we live in now and that’s just the movies we like to watch.