30 May 2008 | flybyenite
A departure and a disaster
Ram Gopal Varma is one of India's foremost film-makers. And like most film-makers he has not only done some good work, he's done some bad movies as well. While films like 'Satya', 'Rangeela' and 'Sarkar Raj' have been not just critically but also commercially well received, he has also made 'Daud' and 'Nishabd' which were complete disasters in every which way possible. No other filmmaker has oscillated between great and terrible so extremely as Ramu. This is one film of his I had missed and saw just the other day on television. And I'm sorry to say, it belongs to the disaster category as opposed to the successful film category. While Ramu valiantly tries to go away from his established zone of underworld and the seedy life of Bombay, he manages only to get there half-way. I was surprised as I read the previous comments because they said almost nothing about the film while praising it. I admit the thought is there - a simple story, a boy meets girl of his dreams, and strangely the girl is as much in love with the boy as the boy is with her. And then the inevitable choice. The music was good, hummable and the performances average. Probably where Ramu was let down was by the overall lack of 'oomph' so to speak of his leading lady, not to mention the lack of interesting script moments. The characters are caricatures in their simplicity and it starts to irritate after awhile because you wish it's not so easy to get around the people and problems in life. But then, it's a movie, so let's not get too philosophical. The problem with the film is that it tries very hard to be a teen movie and doesn't make that grade. The only thing that was a positive is that it's the only complete non-dark Ramu film I've seen to date. And that's a great attempt for a man who claims to be an Ayn Rand enthusiast and for whom the Romantic Manifesto is a very different idea that for most Indian film makers. Watch it to see the 'bright' side of Ramu. Unfortunately, the film has few bright spots to offer.