Prem Ratan Dhan Payo is one of the most awaited Rajshri Production of 2015. After 9 years, Sooraj Barjatya is back with this directorial starring Salman Khan and Sonam Kapoor, among numerous others. To avoid as many spoilers as possible, I’m not giving a full plot synopsis for this one, but the basic premise revolves around a prince, a princess, step siblings, and lots of family drama.
True to Barjatya’s history and legacy of filmmaking (Hum Saath Saath Hain, Hum Aapke Hain Kaun, and the like), PRDP follows suit, being highly emotional and sentimental. As hilarious as the first half is, there are equally as many tearjerking scenes that will touch the heartstrings of viewers – be ready with tissues! From the brother-sister affection between Prem (Salman Khan) and Chandrika (Swara Bhaskar) to the romantic love between the prince and princess Maithili (Sonam Kapoor), each relationship is depicted in a beautifully relatable way.
The director draws inspiration from his prior films as well as the styles of other filmmakers. The song “Jalte Diye” is very similar in style of cinematography and lighting to “Mujhe Haq Hai” from Vivah, and both are romantic numbers. There are also quite a few scenes that make PRDP seem like a Sanjay Leela Bhansali film. Images of Sonam Kapoor running down hallways in the mansion and the scene depicting the prince’s coronation in the palace are reminiscent of Devdas and glimpses of Bajirao Mastani, respectively. The soccer song “Tod Tadaiyya” resembles the basketball match between SRK and Kajol in Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, in that Princess Maithili outrightly challenges the prince’s contention that women cannot play sports.
Needless to say, the grandiose sets and grand costumes are best seen on a large movie screen with surround sound. Manikandan’s cinematography is simply fabulous, as is Salman Khan’s acting, especially during the comedic scenes. Unlike a typical Rajshri film, there is a bit of action towards the end of this one, perhaps to fit Salman’s renewed image as a family action hero. But if one were to justify it, even the fight scene serves the overarching purpose of reuniting the family.
The plot of the movie is quite solid, and Sonam Kapoor fits the role of a princess quite well. While some of the dialogues are a bit cheesy, they don’t necessarily take away from the film. The chemistry between Prem and Diwan Saheb (Anupam Kher) is really cute and adds to the sentimental value of the script. Kudos to Himesh Reshammiya for throwback 90s songs set to graceful choreography by Shabina Khan, Radhika Rao, Mudassar Khan, Vinay Sapru, and Ahmed Khan.
Final Verdict: Prem Ratan Dhan Payo is a neat, family-friendly, unforgettable film that gets you in touch with your emotions. From the step-sibling quarrels to the romance between a prince and princess, this film is truly a heartwarming fairytale.