Samrat Prithviraj comes out as a dull period piece that does neither its source nor its subject any justice. This movie aims to resurrect cultural nationalism, but failed miserably.
Dwivedi has avoided referring to Prithviraj Chauhan’s clashes with Mohammad Ghori as a civilisational conflict. Instead, the director has concentrated on the reality that when personal matters become political, they have far-reaching implications.
According to the disclaimer, the film is based on “Prithviraj Raso,” an epic poem written by Chand Bardai played by Sonu Sood, the poet in Prithviraj’s court. The poem gives an inflated portrayal of Prithviraj’s reign and has become more important as a piece of literary evidence than as historical evidence over time.
In major parts, Akshay Kumar disappoints. Akki has lost much of his usual fire in trying to tone down his body language and Punjabi accent, and he has been unable to generate the gravity required to play the legendary emperor. His inadequacies are highlighted by the presence of seasoned supporting performers such as Ashutosh Rana, Manoj Joshi, Rajendra Gupta, Lalit Tiwari, and even Sonu Sood.
Skip it. You won’t miss anything.