GURU... This movie is all about the vision of a person – Gurukanth Desai (Abhishek Bachchan) & his efforts to realize the dream, fighting against all odds. Some people say it is based on the life of Dhirubhai Ambani. I can see why they say so. But, this is actually a movie about a simple guy trying to make it big in this world. It can easily relate to just about any successful entrepreneur who has been able to achieve his vision.
This movie follows Guru’s journey, starting from his teenage days; his first work in the petrol industry in Turkey. As he matures in age as well as in riches, he decides to start working for himself & begins his “bijjness”- His foundation stone & his first business takeover being his marriage with Sujatha (Aishwarya Rai). He steps into Bombay and bids to cut out his own route in textile trading, through the weed-infested fields of the trading unions. His entry into trading, is greatly influenced by the works of a news editor with great principles, Manikdas Gupta (Mithun Chakraborthy). The relationship between these two, then, goes on to progress to a father-son standard. Flanked by his innovative ideas & his sole will of realizing his dreams, he dares to foray into other areas, manufacturing polyester, producing chemicals etc.
But, as we near intermission, an important incident occurs, which makes Mithunda to take notice of the ways & means of Guru’s success. To investigate Guru’s work, he appoints a young reporter, Shyam Saxena (R Madhavan). This is where the story really starts developing its many twists & turns; involving many intricate plots bearing great emotion, building up wonderfully to a Grand Finale worth the huge expectations from this film.
Mani Ratnam as the Director does a commendable job of realizing his screenplay dreams. His attention to detail in every aspect of the movie is commendable, be it the evolution in the type of clothing which the characters wear or the concept of using different shades of colours for different decades in the movie, there is typical Mani Ratnam uniqueness written all over it. High points in the movie are the sequences between Mithunda & Guru, the simple chemistry between Aishwarya & Abhishek & of course, the Finale. The cinematography by Rajiv Menon is very nice, capturing the essence of the India of the bygone days. The editing though good for the most parts, was a little too flashy for my liking towards the end.
The music by AR Rahman is another huge point going in favour of the movie. The soulful song & tune of “Jaage Hain” & the ravishing song “Tera Bina” are pieces of musical brilliance. "Barso Re" is a melodious number, shot very beautifully with nice choreography. ARR plays his charm though his innovative & fresh music.
Coming to the performances, the beauty queen – Aishwarya Rai has given a wonderful performance, suiting her strong character in the movie. This is one of the few occasions, where her acting has done the talking & not only the looks. Madhavan does justice to the role of the sincere journalist. Vidya Balan runs her charm in the brief, but, important role she plays; portraying her unrelenting love for her quarreling caretakers. Mithun Chakraborthy’s comeback role is the best that I’ve seen coming from this Disco dancer of yesteryears. He is involved in a few quite memorable scenes in the movie, adding his charm. Mallika Sherawath fans would be disappointed to find out that she doesn’t have any role in the movie at all, except for a song.
But, this movie belongs to Abhishek Bachchan & none other. This is the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to play such an important role & he has grabbed it with both hands. This is not a typical hero’s role, which he portrays. There is the interesting addition of grayish shades to his character. His choice of role means that he probably wont have too many of his female fans swooning over him during the movie; but, it is his acting which steals the show here. He graces almost every frame with his presence. His dialogue delivery is immaculate, his energy & confidence in the movie is truly breathtaking, towering over all the other good performances in the movie.