You gotta hand it to SRK. The man is a perfectionist and with Ra.One he has added another dimension to his broad appeal, Codename - MASTERCLASS.
After more than a year of waiting and a budget that defies anything the Indian cinema has seen to date, finally Ra.One released today and boy was I mesmerized with what Anubhav Sinha has produced! Its not just the film that deserves so much credit, but its the fact that SRK was in it. He brought the movie to another level and I don't see any film coming close for at least another 2-3 years.
As Ra.One was a science fiction film, comparisons with its predecessor was inevitable. Yes I am talking about Endhiran. I always felt Endhiran fell short in a couple of aspects as the director focused too much on exploiting Rajni sir's presence that he neglected the loopholes that existed in the script. Before we go there, lets analyze Ra.One, bit by bit.
Ra.One revolves around a simple storyline where a character that had been programmed into a videogame comes to life and causes mayhem around its surroundings. That’s too simple, I hear you say. That’s precisely why this movie was done by none other than the great Shahrukh Khan because he knew which buttons to push and which strings to pull so that this movie is not just centered on Science fiction, but it could also be a mass entertainer.
This was evident throughout the film. Shekar Subramaniam who is the father of the child (Pratheik) happened to be a Tamil speaking dude. To me, this was a masterstroke. A skilled shot by a seasoned actor. In doing this, SRK has not only won over the Tamil audience but he reduced the others who watched it to stitches because of the way he carried his character. From the speech to the hair, no one could have made Shekar Subramaniam more hilarious than SRK. Besides that, he knew that the Indian audience is very sentimental so he threw in a father who is trying to win over his son by being someone he is not. How cool is that? I can imagine thousands of Kleenex being sold all over the world to fulfill the requirements of crying families in the theatre. It’s amazing how a movie could make tissue be such a hot item.
I especially loved the songs throughout the whole film. Although the song everyone is talking about in Ra.One would be Chammak Chalo, the other songs were no less nice either. Bhare Naina, Criminal and Dildara were wonderful songs and the choreography was also top notch. I see a trend emerging in the future where whenever we see SRK, the music of Raftarein keeps playing in our ears. SRK is no more just an actor, he is a superhero.
What's most appealing and the crucial part of any Science Fiction film would be the cinematography. Nicola Pecorini and V.Manikandan have done extremely well in this department. The music coupled with the great visuals made the audience connect with the film. The scene where G.One spins on the car in slow motion while Kareena looks on gives birth to an unlikely romance. It was a beautiful sight. The train scene towards the climax and the car chase scene in London were also well choreographed. I always had a notion that where Indian films have succeeded in portraying emotions well, they have failed in depicting action scenes realistically. Ra.One has proven me wrong in that aspect. Although there were certain hiccups, they were certainly negligible.
Now comes the most important part, the Science and the Fiction. What was illogical about Endhiran was very believable in Ra.One because there was a clever explanation towards what takes place in the film. Endhiran lacked this as all the extraordinary stunts that Chitthi performed looked too much for its simple frame. In Ra.One, the very first scene depicted an explanation into a new technology which would manifest invisible rays and make it produce objects that are real in the universe. The core aspect of the film deals with the question about how a character that existed inside a video game could manifest itself in the real world. That was solved with this invisible ray explanation. It left no room for doubt about the abilities of Ra.One and G.One because whatever they could do in the virtual world could be manifested in the real world through these invisible rays.
The Special effects were very good if not world class. There were certain similarities between this movie and some other English movies. The slight shake of the head by the first Ra.One is an exact representation of Agent Smith from the Matrix(if not done intentionally). The black glasses and also suit reminded me of Matrix too. The part where Ra.One rebuilds itself after being destroyed was definitely inspired by Terminator's T 1000. The cores of Ra.One and G.One reminded me of Iron Man. Although there were similarities, I don't consider it to be a fatal flaw because Ra.One and G.One were still uniquely Indian and that would make any Indian proud. The similarities could have been inserted on purpose for the global audience.
Special mention goes out to Rajni sir who blessed the movie with his presence despite his ongoing health issues. As SRK said in one of his press conferences, this movie would have never been complete without Rajni sir embracing it. With his recent health scare, the superstar proved why he was a superstar and made a guest appearance in the film despite the knowledge that the sheer mention of his name would send Ra.One rocketing through the charts. I admire him, and even SRK knows that there is no one who can be closer or above Rajni sir when it came to superstardom.
Arjun Rampal was a cool villain in the movie although it is questionable as to why there were 2 faces to the Ra.One? Why couldn't have Arjun performed the First Ra.One itself? His acting and physical presence proves why he is still one of Bollywood’s best known hunks. Kareena sizzles with her moves as well as her acting and she has certainly gone from strength to strength over the years. She was also extremely beautiful throughout the movie and it was difficult to take one’s eyes off her(I understood why G.One fell for her too).
As we have covered the important aspects of the film, it is imperative to conclude. I feel Ra.One has brought Indian film making technology to another dimension and it is certainly a proud moment for every Indian to say that this film was an Indian product in its entirety. Every aspect from family values,action,romance,science fiction,comedy to religious tolerance has been carefully woven into the script to provide everyone who watches the film with something to relate to. I foresee this film sweeping the awards for the next year or so and writing/rewriting every record that has existed. SRK has proven why he is known as the Bollywood Baadshah because only he knows how his audience ticks and subsequently- the way to their hearts.
As for me, I am watching the film again and I just whispered to myself - Decision Taken