Baahubali: A Global On-Screen Phenomenon

Move aside Game of Thrones, there’s a new epic saga in town.

A couple of days ago, the Honey Bee, accompanied by friends, went to watch the second of 2 part Indian movie-Baahubali (meaning the one with strong arms). Apparently, this movie is all the rage in India, and is making some pretty big waves in other parts of the world as well. This historical fiction movie set in ancient times involves a Game of Thrones like situation involving warring kingdoms and families. Specifically, Wikipedia describes is as “a tale of the lost rightful heir of the fictional kingdom of Mahishmati, who learns about his true identity while falling in love with a rebellious warrior, who (among with her group) intends to rescue the former queen of Mahismati.

At the time of its release in 2015, Baahubali: The Beginning was billed to be the most expensive Indian movie ever made. It became the highest grossing film in India and the third-highest grossing Indian film worldwide. Its release was a big deal and the movie premiered in several thousand movie theaters worldwide. Even more interesting is the fact that the movie was not originally made in Hindi, but in Telegu (a southern regional language).

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Baahubali 2: The Conclusion released earlier this month with an even larger bang. It premiered in over 9,000 screens worldwide and was dubbed into Hindi, Malayalam, German, French, Japanese and English. It became the highest ever grossing film of all time with a budget of US$ 39 million, a little over half the budget for India’s much publicized mission to Mars.

For some reason, we entirely missed the wave of popularity and virality the first movie brought with it. But not this time. After the Honey Bee saw the second part and told me all about how great it was, I was almost entirely convinced that I needed to watch it. However, what really pushed me over the edge was an article about the movie in the Wall Street Journal.

So a couple of days back, we finally watched the first part. The Honey Bee couldn’t contain her excitement as we watched the plot unfold. Apparently, as she explains, there are a number of plot secrets and connections between the parts. Having already seen the second part, she was making all those connections, while I was still trying to figure out what the hell was going on.

Without giving away too much of the story, let me tell you there is nothing even remotely small about this movie. The storyline, the characters, the special effects, the battle scenes, everything is larger than life and leaves you astounded. An over-the-top, fast-moving plot, combined with (very) short song & dance numbers keep you enthralled from the very beginning to the very end. In fact, after the movie ended I sat there stupefied in my seat, and it took me a couple of minutes to recover from the awesomeness of this movie.

So, whether you’re simply tired of the long-drawn-out Game of Thrones, or whether you’re awaiting the next season, I would strongly suggest you watch this movie. In the meantime, we’re going to make sure we watch the second part in the coming weeks.    

Watch the trailer for the first part here: Baahubali: The Beginning Trailer

 

 

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