Raavan Movie Review

Raavan Movie Poster
Raavan Movie Poster
Martin D'Souza By Martin D'Souza | 18 Mar 2017 15:37:47.4400000 IST


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ANTAGONISTIC! Indian films have been benevolent to suave natured 'protagonists' but its darker and parallel versions ('antagonistic' or 'anti-hero') have not been justified by many. After delivering out back-to-back socially relevant cinematic treats, genius like Mani Ratnam is all set for the countdown that pitches the hottest pair of Abhsishek Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai in the lead roles. As expected from the long-list of musical successes of the past, its old compatriot A.R Rahman along with experienced Gulzar to deliver out the devilish tones for this horrifying love saga. The conglomerate of Mani Ratnam and A.R Rahman stared off with bang with ROJA (1992) that was successfully followed by equally successful albums like BOMBAY (1995), DIL SE (1998), SAATHIYA (2002), YUVA (2004) and GURU (2006). Expectations are huge and so are the credits of this much-awaited musical releases that features favorites of maestro's in the credits. Touted to be one of biggest releases of year 2010, this one promises something innovative as well as experimental in its packaging. Can the music of RAAVAN be as enterprising and challenging as one expects? Let's get straight into its musical facts...!

Ghastly in mood 'n' iconic in narration, A.R Rahman pelts out innovative spell of 'African tribal rhythms and sounds' to exude out the characteristics of lead character in 'Beera'. Gulzar's hot-headed narration is facsimile to his earlier penned 'Omkara' (OMKARA), depicting out 'ten' different facades, moods and phases of 'Beera'. Rahman's creative genius creates different drum sounds in varied pitches and timbres mixing well with prolong synth sounds in flows of electronic dance music. Vijay Prakash and Mustafa Kutaone's gruffly voices range from aggressive to cheerful moods while additional vocals by Keerti Sagathia adds to the gory situational needs. To give it tribal folklore appeal, there are rigorous spells of howling choral sounds in loud pitches to deliver out festive feel in the backdrop. 'Beera' adds to the listing of another valued experimental mode track that unravels new genre (tribal music) and creates hysterical feel about the on-screen happenings. Mani Ratnam's unmatched cinematic zeal will be out there to justify Rahman's genius and will be creating 'word-of-publicity' for the flick.

Tread-milling the path of emotionally volatile tracks like 'Satrangi Re' (DIL SE -1998 ), the next track titled 'Behene De' carries typical Rahman's stamp in its belligerent arrangements, sounds and beats. The highlight of the track is the progressive phili-harmonic orchestral displays at the concluding interludes, emoting out the turbulent phases in love-chemistry. Karthik's likable voice in softer tones has penetrative excruciation that carries out with varied sounds and rhythms with affable support of Mohammad Irfan as back-up vocalist. Rahman plays defined 'conductor' in maintaining equilibrium between subtle toned sounds (soft violin notes, lighter wind chimes and soft-drumming) in initial phases and aggressive orchestral displays in the latter half. Despite carrying situational song appeal, Gulzar's wordings ('Arrey aankh se boondh gira koi, Chingari ka tukda jala koi, Umeed ko aag laga zara, Sehra ki pyaas bujha zara...) metaphors the communicable painful ire of disheartened lover in simple verses. For all Rahman's fans, this one is listening pleasure that adds to the momentum of the album.

Aggression unlimited! The devilish tones of 'Raavan' get louder with daunting melodic metaphors of thumping drumming and shriller percussive moves in 'Thok De Killi'. It's Sukhwinder Singh along with Gulzar's wordings at the helm of affairs and the feel is violently antagonistic in nature. Like previous tracks, this one is too loaded with heavy-duty impulsive sounds and rhythms that give it an intrinsically theatrical appeal.



The last scene where Beera is trapped, is the oldest trick in the book. A bait so often used that you know the outcome the moment it's out.

It's sad for Abhishek because he was fabulous in Mani Ratnam's earlier flicks YUVA and GURU.

Not everyone can deliver a hit every time. But you don't really expect trash from a director of the class of Mani Ratnam.

Rating - 1/5



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What's supposed to be menacing comes out as comical. Abhishek Bachchan tries hard, but try as he may, there is no menace in his mannerisms. The kidnapping scene between him and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan just does not click. On screen you seen them as a married couple (which they are in real life), and the two actors do nothing out of the ordinary to imbue some sense of terror or trauma into the entire sequence. The plot is very convoluted. Mani Ratnam does not establish why Abhishek's character as a man hated by the cops and loved by his people; a modern day Robin Hood. He is referred to as Beera, and he lives in a jungle. So we don't really know if there is any reference to sandalwood smuggler Veerapan as well.

Of course, here there are no elephants, but the disappointment as a viewer, especially if you consider you are watching a Mani Ratnam film, is Jumbo size. At the intermission, you are almost in splits. Actually, you wonder if this is a Mani Ratnam film at all. Your mind races back to RAM GOPAL VARMA KI AAAG. In hindsight, considering Mani Ratnam has goofed up in a manner like this, you are now willing to forgive RGV for his Aaag. This film could aptly be titled, 'Mani Ratnam Ki Daag'.

CHECK OUT: RAAVAN Movie Special

Cinematographer Santosh Sivan has his touch of class to the scenes he has captured in the dense jungles. The long shots and aerial views coupled with the ground zoom-ins are a treat. That is not enough to qualify a film to be a hit. If there is no content; no great director, nor actor, nor cinematographer can ever do anything.

Abhishek is Beera. A man hated by the cops but loved by the villagers. Hot on his trail is Dev Pratap Sharma (Chiyaan Vikram) with a battery of jawans. He is accompanied by forest officer Sanjeevani (Govinda) who will give a monkey a complex by his alarming flexibility of swinging from branch to branch. Beera kidnaps Dev's wife Ragini (Aishwarya) because he has some scores to settle with the cops. Instead of killing her, he ends up subtly romancing her.



The last scene where Beera is trapped, is the oldest trick in the book. A bait so often used that you know the outcome the moment it's out.

It's sad for Abhishek because he was fabulous in Mani Ratnam's earlier flicks YUVA and GURU.

Not everyone can deliver a hit every time. But you don't really expect trash from a director of the class of Mani Ratnam.

Rating - 1/5


Rating 1/5

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Movie Cast & Crew
  • Actor: Abhishek Bachchan, Vikram, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Bipasha Basu (Special appearance), Govinda and Nikhil Dwivedi
  • Lyrics: Gulzar
  • Director: Mani Ratnam
  • Music Director: A.R. Rahman
  • Release Date : 18 Jun 2010

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