Movie Review: Raavan – Boring and Bland

Movie Review: Raavan – Boring and Bland

The modern version of Ramayan(Raavan) follows on the heels of the remake of Mahabharata(Raajneeti). While Raajneeti despite its flaws was a superior product, Raavan is downright boring. The director with the master stroke, Mani Rathnam itself was the biggest reason to watch A.R.Rahman and he lets down this time.

Story of Raavan:

Raavan is the story of an upright policeman, Dev(Vikram); whose wife Ragini(Aishwarya Rai) is kidnapped by Beera(Abhishek Bachchan)  who hides in the deep terrain of the jungles along with his mates. Vikram is helped by  Sanjeevani (Govinda) and a confidante Lakshman(Nikhil Dwivedi).  The reason Beera  has kidnapped Ragini is due to a reason;  the village Robinhood wants to take revenge against the police who had gang-raped his sister, Priyamani, on the wedding night.  During her stay with the ‘Raavan’, our Sita(Ragini) discovers that he is not such a bad guy after all. But she is not able to rescue him who finally dies, shot by the bullets of Vikram and his police team.

What is good about Raavan

1. Stunning visuals, especially the scene in which Aishwarya Rai leaps from a cliff to be entangled among the branches and then her slilping and falling in the river with the ‘Behne De’ song playing in the background is simply mesmerizing, a piece of cinematic excellence. Santosh Sivan’s cinematography is mind-blowing.
2. The fight scene on the bridge, during the climax, though a tad far-fetched, is shot brilliantly. Full marks to the action directors, Shyam Kaushal and Peter Hein

What is not so good about Raavan

1. Like many films this year, Raavan suffers from a bad narrative. Stunning visuals cannot compensate for  a poor narrative. The screenplay can put you to sleep and the first half does not have anything to boast of, apart from the ‘Behne de’ scene.
2. Instead of  the character ‘Raavan’ which should inspire awe and fear that could send a chill down your spine,  Mani Rathnam’s Beera looks like a caricature villain that makes you laugh at his mockery and his continuous ‘chak-chak-chak’
3. The makeup and the look of Beera’s brigand looks like makeup gone all wrong.  None of his henchmen evoke any fear or sympathy (if that was the objective of Rathnam)
4. The movie stretches badly in the first half and limps after the climax. What is the point in dragging the film after the bridge climax?
5. Govinda is short-changed in this film, he simply disappears…tragic
6. Zero Content, looks like one line stretched into a 2 hour boredom
7. The movie’s message is also regressive, Vikram asking Aishwarya Rai to give a polygraph test to prove her purity is definitely condemnable.

Best scene in Raavan

1. The scene in which Aishwarya Rai tries to leap of a high mountain with Abhishek Bachchan falling suit, the scene intersped with Behne De song.

Performances in Raavan

Sadly the movie is not first-rate even in terms  of performance. Only the ladies shine, Priyamani makes a good debut in a small role. Apart from Aishwarya Rai, who looks as beautiful as a Goddess and gives her career-best performance, everyone else is insipid. Govinda though sincere, gets a bad role that does not justify his talent.  Vikram is boring and makes you feel indifferent to him. Abhishek Bachchan is not appropriate for the film, and does not create any impact except for the last few scenes, but by then, the verdict has already been passed.

Conclusion: Raavan may just be Mani Rathnam’s worst movie to date

Rating:**(Average, one point goes to the visuals and Aishwarya Rai)

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