Review: Devdas (2002)

You watch Devdas and you hear it’s the most expensive film made and you can see where the money’s gone. It is one of the most opulent films I have seen in a long time. No longer do we care about the masses, but instead we focus on the big people who live big lives in big mansions – who love big and lose big.

Basically everything about Devdas is big.

The movie has an operatic air about it where loves are passionate, tragic and unrequited and despite the necessary and almost idyllic opening where our two main protaganists, Devdas (Shah Rukh Kahn) and Paro (Ashwarya Rai), are introduced and the regular upbeat and lively musical numbers, there is that constant touch of melancholy in every scene where the characters cannot shake that sense of regret and loss.

The costumes and backdrops are just awesome to behold and the cast is amazing. Shah Rukh Kahn starts off as the lovelorn Devdas who has seen the world to return home and fall from grace. Ashwarya Rai as Paro, the innocent who forcibly grows up while still holding the flame to her true love. The villians play such a minor role in the film and are perhaps more aptly described as opportunists of fate that, in hindsight they seem hardly villainous at all. However, they act with such spite and selfishness, it’s not hard to loathe them as much as you love the protagonists.

Devdas is such a spectacle that carries the audience from the very start that it is impossible to be moved. Add to this the strength of the story and the tightness of the direction where nothing is wasted and foreshadowing done at every turn, Devdas is an experience that would only generate a lot of bad kharma if I were to not recommend it.

Maybe not as much as Devdas and Paro but why tempt fate?

10 Regrets out of 10.
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