Release Date : Sep 27,2013
Raja Rani
Review by : Behindwoods Review Board
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Production: AR Murugadoss Productions, Fox Star Studios, S Shanmugam
Cast: Arya, Jai, Manobala, Nayanthara, Nazriya Nazim, Santhanam, Sathyan, Sathyaraj
Direction: Atlee Kumar
Screenplay: Atlee Kumar
Story: Atlee Kumar
Background score: G. V. Prakash Kumar
Cinematography: George. C. Williams
Dialogues: Atlee Kumar
Editing: Ruben
Stunt choreography: Dilip Subarayan
Dance choreography: Sheriff
Singers: Aishwarya, Alka, Alphonse, Clinton Cerejo, G.V.Prakash Kumar, Gaana Bala, Sasha, Shakthisree Gopalan, Shalmali Kholgade, Vandana Srinivasan, Vijay Prakash
Lyrics : Gaana Bala, Na Muthukumar, Pa Vijay
PRO: Suresh Chandra
Distribution: Fox Star Studios

Director Atlee’s debut movie Raja Rani reiterates that ‘there is love after love failure’ and importantly ‘there is life after love failure’. It begins with a lovely Christian wedding between John and Regina (Arya and Nayanthara) where the two marry against their wishes just to appease their near and dear ones. After a really rough initial period post their marriage, we are presented their back stories and the romances with Nazriya and Jai respectively in their lives prior to this marriage.

Santhanam plays Arya’s dearest friend empathizing with his buddy and at the same time generating the expected share of chuckles. His consistency as a comedian, movie after movie is terrific and he also proves that he can shine as an ‘actor’. The scene at the hospital when Nayanthara insults Arya is a classic example of the myriad reactions that Santhanam can bring about in his facade.

The new darling in town, Nazriya Nazim appears really cute and her introductory dance to ‘Ringa Ringa’ is easily among the most endearing heroine intro scenes in recent memory. Her girly voice sure has some appeal.

Arya exhibits maturity in emotional scenes, shares great chemistry with both the lead ladies and breezes through the role. Jai is a great comedic element in the first half with his constant weeping and self-pitying antics. His shrill voice suits such scenes well. Sathyan as his senior at the call centre contributes well to the movie’s comedy.

Sathyaraj is stylish playing the uber-cool dad to Nayanthara. Scenes like both addressing each other as ‘darling’ and Nayan offering a bottle of beer to ‘correct’ her dad are enjoyable. The emotional scene in the car when Nayan opens her heart out to her dad has been enacted brilliantly by both these actors. Raja Rani could qualify as Nayanthara’s career best performance till date. Great comeback by the actress with a role which gave her ample scope.

Naan Kadavul Rajendran, in never-seen-before suave and professional costumes plays to the gallery and is slowly becoming a crowd favourite thanks to his striking appearance and voice.  

G.V.Prakash is the bloodline of Raja Rani breathing life into Atlee’s script. His rerecording for the romance scenes and other intense moments is top notch and lifts the overall movie viewing experience. He is no doubt among the best when it comes to scoring BGMs.

The much loved number ‘Angnyaade’ is sadly nowhere to be seen or heard in the movie. ‘Hey Baby’ is an enjoyable number at the beginning of the movie, ‘Unnale Unnale’ is a little treat during the Jai – Nayanthara romance and ‘Imaye’ is used mellifluously throughout the movie.

George C Williams is another talent to watch out for. The way his lens captures sunlight adding class and finesse to the frames is unique. The wedding scenes in the church look splendid on screen. The interiors of the Arya – Nayanthara apartment look slick and Muthuraj’s work on the sets is intricate.  

The movie’s running time is 2 hours 45 minutes and there are moments in the second half leading to the finale which sag. The end product could have been much tauter.

To sum up, though the second half of Raja Rani moves along predictable lines, it’s still a promising debut by Atlee.

Atlee has ably handled a pure romantic film with so many seasoned actors on board and joins the list of promising directors to have made their debut this year.

Verdict: With the cast and crew capably delivering the goods, Raja Rani spells classy romance.
( 3.0 / 5.0 )



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