Sunday, February 05, 2006

Rang De Basanti - Complete yet incomplete
(for all those who have seen the movie - no plot given)

The Idea and some scenes that stand out for me
- I think the very thought of making an attempt to awaken the young generation, by means of a film is to be appreciated. So Kudos to Rakeysh OmPrakash Mehra and D'Silva.
- The blending of flash back scenes from our freedom struggle like the Jalianwallah Baug, Kakori loot, etc. and the current happenings is done with great panache. Just loved each sequence. Beautiful connectivity, no sudden/irrelevant eruptions. The scene where the gang sits watching themselves on the screen/documentary, the meloncholy silence of the atmosphere, their expressions after that and Madhavan's entry with "koi marr gaya kya?" was too good.
- Delhi University auditions of students for their roles - Hilarious!!
- the interaction between the gang in the Lounge about the country, youth, politicians, corruption, etc.
- DJ's onscreen chemistry with Sue (Alice Patton)
- Aamir's interaction with his mom (Kiron Kher) for the first time is hilarious and both of them are adorable.

The spoken words
"Khoon jo ab na khaula, woh khoon nahi, paani hai
jo desh ke kaam na aaye, bekaar woh jawaani hai"

(saw the movie once and heard this line just once in the start - it is etched in my heart until eternity)

''ek paav past mein, ek paav future mein, isi liye hum apne present par moot rahe hai''
(Aamir utters it in a frivolous fashion onscreen it sounds more tongue-in-cheek than cheesy.)

"Is this the world of God?"
(rendered by the man who plays McKinley in a church with anger and remorse in his eyes - Makes me go one step further into becoming a dogmatic atheist)

Ground breaking Music
A R Rehman is a musical genius according to me and needs no appreciation. Background score is amazing!! Great lyrics by Prasoon Joshi

Need I say anything about chart-toppers Pathshaala and the title track sung by Daler Mehendi (for someone who hates him, this one came as a surprise)
Ik Onkaar by Harshadeep Kaur is excellent symphony, there's not much music actually, her voice itself is mesmerising
Aslam, Nacim and ARR do a great job of Khalbali, though it sounds like a stereotype Arabic number, the exotic beats and desi touch gives it a good flavour.
The vim and vigour in Naresh Iyer and ARR's voice coupled with the tinkling and effervescent notes of the guitar makes Roobaroo enthralling.
Mohit chauhan - frontman of Silk route soothes the ears with the poetic khoonchala.
Luka Chuppi according to me, is yet another masterpiece of the GOD - A R Rehman. My only complain is why does Lata have to sing every one of those true blue mother or message-giving songs. Like I said before, Lata should stop singing. The saving grace was Rehman's voice making- up to her flaws (if I may say so), reminding me of his extremely heart rendering Ye jo Des hai mera (Swades)

Song-sequence Picturisations
Every song exhibits excellent direction, timeliness and cinematography. Screenplay by Rensil D'Silva is good. The best part is that none of the songs are fully played in the movie. Every song starts instantaneously yet is relevant to the situation, is incomplete going by the audio version yet is enough to drill into your heart and instill the mood.
An exception here was the eccentric and gentle tu bin bataye. Though the song is pretty good, why did Sonia (Soha Ali Khan) have to cry when her boyfriend, Ajay(R Madhawan) proposes to her? I mean, how stereotype is that!

Aamir Khan - This, I had to do as a loyal fan. A special attention to him is required here owing to my penchant for him and his sizzling-scorch of a performance in Rang de. Like I said before, Aamir yet again proves to be an actor in the true sense of the word and one who can never shatter the expectations of his fans. The word 'perfect' is imperfect to describe his delivery in the movie. May it be the Narcissistic- dare- devil-coolguy-on-campus - DJ merrymaking with "tim-tim-lak-laks" or the friendly "bhen-da-takkas", may it be the politically conscious activist- with- renewed-strength rendering ardently the Lalkaar or some truely inspiring lines - Aamir lives upto his character and the seriousness of the movie with his much-lauded Punjabi cum Haryanvi accent.

Atul Kulkarni does a typical and predictable role but is as usual at his best, living upto the theatre-guys-are-great-actors kinda image. His eyes speak volumes.
Alice patton is indeed very very good. With her naturally accented Hindi and no awkward deliveries, Alice lives upto her role. I loved the way she said, "tumhaari maa ki aankh"
Siddharth of whom I had absolutely no hopes of after I saw his disastrous debut - Boys (a Tamil Maniratnam flick.) His performance was a surprise package to me. His cynical nature and attitude towards the country is well enacted by himself. He gives a decent performance in Ray bans, jackets, cigarettes and with his quiet mannerisms.
Kunal Kapoor is serene, poetic, harmless and one of those who plays a not-very-integral yet no-nonsense role. Better than his performance in Meenaxi.
Sharman's comic timings and interactions with Aamir are sure to make you laugh. He proves that he can think beyond Styles and Shaadi no.1s
Soha Ali Khan has improved and taken good long strides after her previous few flicks, still I feel she needs to go a long way. A role as intense as this came too soon in her career.

Though, the message of 'a generation awakens' is rendered successfully at the end of 180 minutes, I felt it could have been delivered in a much better manner. In other words, the generation awakens, but now what? How can you and me as youngsters make a difference? Should we all join defence/police/politics? Or kill all corrupt politicians of the country? Will that solve the root problem? All these questions remain unanswered though many of these options which are provided in the movie are still debatable. So, all of this makes the movie a complete yet incomplete one.
The way the whole episode of the Defence minister and the gang's attempts to execute him on his morning walk seemed very superfluous. Given that the gang is not made of professional-killers, they could have still thought a bit more complex.

My Quote
"Well, watched another good Aamir Khan movie. Initially appeared to be a strange mix though of Arthur Miller's All my sons and Shaheed Bhagat Singh. The conflicts and difference of opinions are not portrayed too loudly. All said and done, the movie is youthful, contemporary and can be a joyful experience. But, could definitely have been better."


Blogger Kiran Shetty said...

truly man...hands up to the movie for its sheer ability to giv u a fully fun filled 3hrs with an xciting mix of humor, sexy songs n drama.
..juz one appeal(if i may say so to my singer friend) i feel u shud not demean a legendary singer like Lataji n place A R Rehman to rectify her mistakes.its just tht her voice is no longer appealing to us. but yaar she is a master in her own right n u (as a singer) shud respect that..
wot say?????

5:40 AM  
Anonymous THE spy said...

I somehow cannot take your point about Rang de being an incomplete film. It definitely comes with a message that we must stand upto the expectations of our nation and live and die for it. And, if that means killing a corrupt politician, what is wrong? wasnt he responsible for the death of the pilots? What more message are you seeking for? and in what way is it incomplete, I fail to understand.
And, agreed! Aamir is excellent!

11:16 AM  
Blogger aShWiN said...

-The movie's merit outnumbers the flaws...though he looks slightly older in the gang of brats...
versatile Aamir is at his best...
his simply superb SPONTANIETY is brilliant!
-A R Rehman and Electric Guitar...WOW!
-Aamir and A R Rehman are the soul of RDB.
-Surprising Siddharth (gr8 attitude)
-I even like the way songs are picturised...they r all played in the background...n no actors tryin 2 lip synchin it (except one occasion).
All-in-All a fantastic movie...not worth missing!

10:28 PM  
Blogger Surya Ragunaathan said...

@ Kiran - Honestly, I have nothing against Lata...infact, she's been one of my biggest inspiration...But,her voice no longer is appealing(like u urself agree)...And so a simple equation is: "If u have lost ur charm, just stop"...I dont think I am disrespecting her in anyway if i say that...moreover, if u listen to the song keenly, U will defi observe that it IS INDEED Rehman's voice that 'lifts the fallen notes of Lata'

@ Spy - Am shocked and that was outrageous is all I can say...I mean, If u dont see anything wrong with killing ministers, U R a rebel to the extreme...I agree the minister was directly/indirectly responsible for the death of the pilots and that being the youth of this nation we must all stand upto its expectations but, does that give U a license to take the law in ur hands??...I dont think it does...All of this may at one point seem very inspirational(like it has to many) in a bollywood film, certainly not in reality. I was looking for a more positive and practical message in the film...sorry to say, Its missing

@ Ashwin - ya, the absense of the lip-synch is what made songs worth watching, i guess...Agreed on all other points(Rehman, Siddharth, Aamir)...The movie's merits outnumbered the flaws is true, but the flaws are such that they will stay for a long time in the minds of the likes of me.

6:53 AM  
Anonymous Ranjani said...

I think you are the Surya I KNow!!
Was randomly surfing and look what I found!!

Haven't seen the movie, but some of my friends tell me that the makers stretched it too far...

9:58 AM  
Blogger Surya Ragunaathan said...

Hey Ranjani, I cant beleive this!!...Is the Earth shrinking or something??
Neways, Welcome to my Blog!! good to see you here and if havent watched the movie, I would suggest go and watch it and do not make any opinions before you watch it
(ps: Me and one of my friends were thinking that we were the last ones in the World to watch RDB, U beat both of us)

6:39 PM  
Blogger Vj said...

Hi there!
Well, I saw the movie, loved it. I may even see it again on Cable TV. Whoops! Isn't the movie supposed to make me "patriotic"?? How can I even think of watching it on cable? Sorry guys. But, on hindsight, the movie-makers, the guys whose money I am trying to save by keeping away from "pirated" films, are probably the biggest tax evaders and money launderers in the country! So to hell with them! I am gonna watch this cool movie!

Confused, dear reader? So am I, when I read articles after articles about the "patriotic implications" of RDB. Its just a damn movie with great performances, sexy loactions and gr8 music! Where does my "desh ki dharti" come in????

All my dear freinds who are the "hip-hop patriots" of today, think again. I feel patriotic, sure I do. But not after a movie. I feel like a patriot in battle when I argue with my friends littering the roads from their daddy's cars. I feel like a revolutinary when I see college kids not buying railway tickets. I feel the need to battle for freedon when speaking the truth or advocating honesty makes you a laughing stock. I want to stand up against all those nice ladies who sing bhajans for hours on loudspeakers in tune to the latest bollywood blockbuster - and then go home to torture their servats and daughters-in-law.

For those of you who think I am over-reacting, I have this to say: The very fact that a 3 hour film can influence a billion people more strongly on patriotism than 50 years of history, 13 years of schooling and a lifetime of family life, shows how far we are from reality.

I am fighting. Everyday. Are you?

3:16 AM  
Anonymous Vineet said...

Hi Surya, U may not be knowing me. My name is Vineet, am from KK's & Jack's batch. Used to read ur blog regularly but due to last week's bhag daud for office cudnt get time to read this post. i have watched the movie and reading the dialogues again here felt real good. You should have included 1 more in the list, the 1 when Aamir gives bribe to the cop and Sue asks "Was that a bribe?". Karan replies, "WELCOME TO INDIA".

Nice Blog !!!

11:55 PM  
Blogger Surya Ragunaathan said...

@ VJ - dunno what to say at what u have written...brilliant! Very thought provoking, Thanks

@ Vineet - I just love it when MCC-BMSians visit my blog and comment also...good to know you and that you read my blog,thanks!! Ya, that was a good addition to the list. I also somehow liked those sequences where Aamir sings, "sue kar, mere mann ko....."

9:08 AM  
Anonymous Hiren Shah said...

Everything was good except for the end.

5:32 AM  
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