Ra One, Shah Rukh Khan

<Review by: Sailesh Ghelani>

Directed by Anubhav Sinha. Starring Shah Rukh Khan, Kareena Kapoor, Arjun Rampal.

Panned by mostly all Indian film reviewers, praised by many International film critics and making it big at the box office (showing us critics really don’t matter sometimes, live with it guys!), Ra.One is undoubtedly a bad movie. But for Bollywood, it represents a shift in thinking, a step up in special effects and our first big 3D movie.

Shah Rukh Khan is a star you either love or hate. There’s usually no in between. He purportedly made this film to appease his children’s pleas for a super hero movie. So SRK took some lessons first by watching films like Terminator 2: Judgment Day, Matrix, Tron and Iron Man. He then set out making a film about a game developer called Shekhar (a South Indian with lots of the southy accent and phrases thrown in) who to please his son Prateek (Armaan Verma) creates a new game where the villain, Ra.One (Random Access One, but in Indian mythology the demon Raavan), is more powerful than the hero, G.One (Good One, but in Hindi Jeevan, meaning life). I guess we Indians really shouldn’t pronounce our w’s like v’s!

Set in London, where everyone disconcertingly speaks Hindi, Shekhar and his wife Sonia (Kareena Kapoor) raise son Prateek in a very curious manner. He makes fun of his father who dresses up like Michael Jackson and does the Moon Walk but then spouts philosophy about good v/s evil to his video gaming son. Their weird life becomes weirder when Ra.One (Arjun Rampal) attains intelligence, breaks free of his gaming environment and is hell bent on killing Lucipher (Prateek’s gaming name). Why, we don’t really know. Of course G.One, who is modelled on Shah Rukh Khan’s character (well appearance at least) also gets out. And the battle begins in Mumbai amidst lots of song and dance, action sequences, more song and dance and some slapstick moments.

Most of the acting is cheesy and farcical so when the serious moments in the film do come, you can’t really feel for the characters or shed a tear. You can laugh at the stupid dialogue, the strange curse words (in a family film??), and the blatant lifting from the above-mentioned Hollywood films. They’ve very sneakily copied a lot of the villain T-1000 character in Terminator 2: Judgment Day. You’ll have to watch the film to spot the similarities since there are too many to point out here.

I watched the film in 3D (my first Hindi film in the format) and it wasn’t too bad. Basic stuff but worth it (considering it was 2D conversion). But I didn’t really enjoy this film. I suppose that’s why they have the song and dance, the slapstick and over-acting. Because it wouldn’t be Bollywood otherwise. And people did laugh at some of the stuff in there. It’s certainly not brilliant or a must see; you’ll only hear Editor’s and their sycophants plugging this film because they’re ardent SRK ass lickers! And that’s the honest truth. But hey, let them have their sci-fi too.

Did you really need Akon singing Chammak Challo? What was with SRK as G.One spouting ‘Smoking is bad for you’ speeches (considering he is a big smoker)? The worst actor of the movie has to be Shahana Goswami. Hamming and how! Oh and if this is an Indian super hero, how come he’s still in London? One more thing: I noticed this when I saw the poster — G.one… Gone. Yes, it would seem that way.

After you watch the film check out this funny comic strip parody of Ra.One atwww.thevigilidiot.com

Like it? share with friends