Sunday, January 2, 2011

#20: Raghu Romeo

I didn't know that this one had got the National Award for Best Feature Film in Hindi before I bought this. The DVD cover didn't surprisingly say so. Which worked out for good because with a tag like that a movie raises it's expectations for the imminent viewer. Particularly so, because it's directed by Rajat Kapoor - a man who never fails to impress whether it's his impressive choices of roles ( Anuranan, Phas Gaya Re Obama, Bheja Fry) or his mainstream directorial filmography that I had seen till now. ( Mixed Doubles, Mithya)

So I did have certain standards set in my head- this being a Rajat Kapoor movie after all-before the movie began. The movie began well, with the introduction of the protagonist Raghu (Vijay Raaz) who is obsessed with TV actress Reshmaji (Maria Goretti) and wishes her to be free from the evil family she has to bear with in her family soap Dard Ka Rishta( ( that's replete with the agonizingly familiar background score such dramas have). It had the typical Rajat Kapoor slow build-up to the main conflict of the movie which was about how would Raghu meet up with this character he so idolizes on-screen much to the dismay of his parents. In comes Raghu's employer,an underworld killer who goes by the name of Brother ( Saurabh Shukla) hired to kill Reshmaji. Raghu's confidant friend is the fourth key character in the movie, a dance bar girl Sweety ( Sadia Siddiqui) who incidentally has won the heart of Brother and also has the hots for Raghu. The movie is the interplay of what these four characters go through in their respective quests.

At 93 minutes, the movie isn't long but it feels long because the journey to these quests undertaken by these characters are neither interesting nor amusing. It is said that Rajat Kapoor put all his personal savings in this movie and had to write a passionate appeal to his friends asking for financial help so that he could see through the completion of this movie. That's the earnestness that shines through the motives of these 4 likeable characters but other than that it failed to capture my imagination. The characters put in their best without delivering what you would call an outstanding performance. Or maybe I was just looking for that Bharat Bhushan or a Ranjeet Thadani kind of a character which never came.

Raghu Romeo is a below par movie but given the fact that there were too many travails that Rajat Kapoor had to go through to put this in one piece, I would be biased in giving the movie a just average rating. But I would be doing so, only because when a man of the caliber of Rajat Kapoor makes his first movie, he deserves those 93 minutes he asked us for.

Rating: 5.5/10