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  • What an emotional and eye opening journey regarding the dangerous mix of religion and politics. The same dangerous mix we still face today. How can we profess to be products of a creator when we malign and even kill each other for the sake of an interpretation of our creator's being, the love that must have been to create us in the first place. I have just watched the DVD and cannot quite crying for the waste of good lives - the same waste occurring today. Will we ever learn?! Just a note on Shahrukh Khan's role and performance in the was very understated and very moving. Since he his a Muslim, wouldn't it be nice to see him more roles expressing his own beliefs? It's amazing what influence a popular celebrity can have on popular thought. During such a time of religious warfare, it would be nice to see more films such as this that leave one with the conclusion the religious wars are an abomination. That there really is no such thing as a righteous war. Killing in the same of our creator is much the same as killing our siblings in the name of our parents. Can you imagine them condoning such behavior? Not I.

    This was an excellent film on several levels including artistry, story line, and acting and direction. For what ever reason one would want to view films, except for simple mindless escapism, this is one to view and digest.
  • biosoftcoder17 May 2006
    Gandhiji is said to be the father of the India. A Mahathma who lived his principles instead of just preaching. But why on earth someone would want to kill him? It is something that the politicians and religious fellows wanted to hide from the general public. Kamal Hassan takes a brave step in putting things on the screen for everyone to see. True that the film evoked anger at many sects, but none could stop the film as everything is history and hence cannot be denied. The film supports religious harmony and breaks a lot of myths (including the one that Gandhi said 'hey ram' after being shot). Every Indian should see the film (where he is a Hindu or a Muslim doesn't matter at all). For that India would live in peace.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Hey Ram is the story of Saket Ram (Kamal Haasan), an archaeologist. He is on a dig in pre-partition Harappa with his buddy Amjad (Shah Rukh Khan) when communal violence erupts in the region and the dig is closed down. Saket Ram goes off to Calcutta to visit his new wife Aparna (Rani Mukherjee). Calcutta is in chaos with religious strife and Ram's wife is brutally assaulted and killed by some Muslim men a few days after his return. He becomes unstable and seeks out the perpetrators of the crime and deals with them. While wandering the streets Ram meets with Abhyankar (Atul Kulkarni) who tells him that his family has suffered a similar fate and that the one man responsible for all this is MK Gandhi. Ram goes off to Tamil Nadu and after seeing Maithili (Vasundhara Das) agrees to marry her. All the time he is still traumatized by Aparna's death and planning revenge. When Abhyankar is paralyzed in a polo accident Ram vows to take his place as the killer of the Mahatma. He moves to Delhi and there he re-encounters his friend Amjad. Now hatred for Muslims and his prior closeness to Amjad are at war and Ram must choose his path - will it be the road to revenge or redemption? The story is excellent and the movie manages to retain its grip on the viewer for over three hours. The direction is for the most part very good. There are a few strange moments that seemed unnecessary to me - why is there the surreal stuff when Ram is shown with Maithili? The Marathi dance seemed unnecessary. Why were the bullets in a cartridge in a pre-partition handgun? Can one talk after one's throat is sliced open? But these are indeed minor quibbles in an overall excellent film.

    The background score is a bit intrusive, the songs not memorable. Maybe this is not the best of the Maestro Illayaraja. The beginning song/dance in the club is sort of silly, certainly not needed. Surely bonding between friends can be shown in other ways.

    Acting is very good throughout. For me the outstanding performance was given by Rani Mukherjee. She breathed life into Aparna and was at her most attractive and charming as a Bengali Bodhu! Kamal was very good. He showed love, passion, anger, rage, madness very well. And what looks at nearly age 50! The man is awesome. Shah Rukh gave a great performance as Amjad - a very restrained and balanced performance that in the end showed us which path Ram would choose and why. Atul Kulkarni was awesome as the fanatical Abhyanker. Vasundhara Das was luminous and did an excellent job playing Maithili. Naseer Shah as Gandhi, Hema Malini as the mother were all very good. In fact there was no bad performance in the film.

    This is a fine piece of movie making and deserves all the accolades it got. If you have not yet seen this film then you are in for a rare treat.
  • Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi is an idolized figure in India. He is one who is almost raised to the status of GOD by many. Films such as Richard Attenborough's "Gandhi" have glorified this figure repeatedly and rightfully so. However, this is only one side of the story. What Kamal Haasan shows through "Hey! Ram" is that Gandhi is a part of history and history cannot be changed and needs to be told as it was. Gandhi was not the "glory" that he is believed to be for everyone! There were numerous people who opposed him and his policies. Contrary to much of the controversy behind this film, "Hey! Ram" does not trivialize Gandhi, nor does it blame him. In fact, the main character, Saket Ram (Kamal Haasan in a powerhouse performance)learns to appreciate Gandhi by the end of the journey. The point of the film is not that he does learn to appreciate Gandhi despite being chosen as his potential assassin, but rather the way he makes his journey to that point. This journey is so masterfully and artistically directed by Kamal Haasan that one cannot help but sit back and be stunned at what this genius is capable of. What Haasan has created with "Hey! Ram" is not only an epic film but perhaps the biggest casting coup of the decade with actors like Nasseeruddin Shah (who makes a better Gandhi than Ben Kingsley), Om Puri, Shahrukh Khan, Rani Mukherji, Girish Karnad and many other prominent names of the Indian Film Industry. The cinematography is simply brilliant and Renu Saluja's editing is a work of art. Ilayaraja's music is a highly emotive score that effectively blends western orchestral arrangements with traditional carnatic sounds. "Hey! Ram" is one of the greatest Indian films ever made. It takes a lot of intelligence and passion to make and appreciate a film like "Hey! Ram."
  • This is certainly not for those who like to see brainless junk in the form of a movie. It has a class of its own, and requires equally classy audience. You wont find it interesting if you are used to the regular kind of movies.

    Kamal Haasan has worked hard in selecting the crew. Each important character that appears in the movie, speaks his/her own language, in their native accent. Example, Rani appears as a Bengali, Shahrukh Khan as a proper 'Khan'.

    One small trouble with this movie is the number of languages used - which perhaps results in a slight lack of integrity.

    Musical score by Ilayaraja is excellent.
  • I had heard that Kamal Hassan was a good actor, so I decided to check out Hey Ram. I knew nothing of the plot (best way to see a movie; no expectations...) and I must admit I was emotionally overwhelmed by the end of it.

    Kamal Hassan is an amazing actor who is not only passionate about his work but also about his country. And what a pleasure to see Shah Rukh in a minor part.

    Hey Ram is a film that every American actor, writer, and director should study. Few American films have had such an effect on me. I highly recommend it.
  • smadhumitha29 December 2006
    A truly amazing experience.....One cannot explain the kind of feeling that creeps into your heart at the end of this movie...its a hard-hitting mixture of reality with a very interesting element of fiction thrown in.....every aspect of the movie was breath-taking...the music by the Maestro Ilayaraaja..especially the songs...Nee partha, Isayil thodanguthamma and hey ram.....The BGM completely gels with the movie ..... Coming to the acting, I personally feel this is one of the best movies of almost every actor in the movie..Kamal is his usual splendid self....Watch him become the happy lover, the broken human being, the idealist and finally the old man with wrinkles of experience...the idea of having used colour in the past and b/w in the present is definitely a great concept.....Other than Kamal Haasan, Atul Kulkarni and Rani Mukherjee have given mind-blowing performances....Kulkarni is an incredibly talented actor and one can see the emotion in his eyes that speak most of his dialogues in the movie...Rani mukherjee is the perfect fit for her role of a Bengali teacher and has given a wonderful performance......The movie comes as a kind of rebel in the usual masala Indian movies genre and is a must watch for anyone interested in gaining a wholesome experience....Another feather on India cinema's cap.....
  • A Real Eye-Opener... and that's what its is. First of all I would like to inform that I haven't yet watched the original version of this movie which claims to be better than this Hindi version.That's the reason I can't compare both movies. This movie has it all,whether its Hard-Core Reality, maturity, direction, special-effects and most of all great acting and true-to-the-core screenplay which provides us with nothing but tough reality which can be bargained for nothing, NOT even for what everybody calls, Religious Tolerance. However one tries to ignore it,one cannot defy the hard truthfulness of the subject of this movie. As far as the plot is concerned it's imaginary but not impossible. The idea that there could have been more than one potential killers of Gandhiji is not impossible.But that is not what the talented Kamal Haasan want to present in front of us.Instead he wants to introduce the ACTUAL circumstances during the times of Indian struggle for freedom. he has truly depicted the life of an average Indian who truly loves his motherland and beautifully depicted the transformations he undergoes from an anti-Muslim, anti-Gandhi to a humanataranian. My personal favourite from the movie though is not Kamal's character but that of Atul Kulkarni's.The way he lives his life as tough as that,his inteligence,his intense love for his motherland which overrides his mind even in the eventuality of facing a physical disorder which he has to suffer and also as a result of which he get bedridden is truly inspirational.And most of all it was TRUE in those days! The visual-effects though not the greatest but are great. This script is what we can call a revolution in (1)typical Indian's thinking standards,(2)expression of hard-core reality. Also as a movie its simply great for its acting,visual effects, direction and most of all its Script. Truly, this movie enjoyed the well deserved nomination from India's part in the category of Best Foreign Language Film at the Academy Awards.And it well could have been the winner if only it could have been possible for Kamal Haasan to put much more necessary efforts in that direction. Finally,though not a completely perfect movie still I would give it a 10 out of 10 due to its TRUTHFULNESS. If the Always Talented Kamal Haasan makes a next movie even half good as this one I would like to watch it. Its unarguably the best of all Indian movies including Hindi ones.

    It's my personal Rank One among my top ten Indian (though not international)movies. The future would be great if more individuals would watch more mature movies like this. Also this is my first review of its kind so if possible forgive me for any misgivings.
  • its a real good one.!! a reality show telling viewer what makes a human worse than a cruel and mad animal..and then again shows that still humanity is live like always.. and why our world is best place to live...certainly because our goodwill.. A reality show,fully mature and a search for the truth.its a great story telling with even greater acting by all its characters. it may some time make you think that path of gandhiji was not right,but eventually just like the hero knees down you would think that whatever Mr. Gandhi had in his hand he did his best. thanks to Mr. kamal haasan for his i think best Hindi movie and one of my best one too.. and finally i got it worthy enough to give it 9.9 out of 10.
  • hey ram is way too complex for the average indian viewer. the movie's complex techniques of flash-trhough, visual & aural associations, extended pauses & the use of the mental imagery of the protagonist to express his thoughts most probably did not connect with the indian audience.

    the movie, im sure, is hailed as a classic at film institutes and by connoisseurs but the demanded too much involvement from the audience, for it to have any kind of mass appeal.

    the sensitive story and the harsh visuals would have further delineated the audience, but for discerning viewers who like to get involved in the movie, this is a must see.

    the way the protagonists thoughts, views & ideals on the issue of patriotism, struggle & Gandhi keeps changing and evolves slowly through his own experiences are extraordinary to watch. makes me want to read more about the Mahatma.

    a brilliant movie, will rank among my alltime favourites. a classic 10.
  • Kamal Hasan is a truly great actor and with this film he has cemented his status a talented director. This is an epic film which is extremely thoughtful. It shows how a rationale man can turn into a prujudiced extremist. It shows that hatred for past tragic events will not solve feelings of loss of a loved one. It also shows that compassion and sacrifice are needed in politics rather that populist rabble rousing. This film has been criticized in many quarters for many reasons. People have said that the film focuses on Kamal Hasan too much and that it a self indugent vanity fest. This is unfair considering Mr Kamalji is one of the best actors in India. Also the film is about this person and the imapct on his thinking to tragic surrounding events. The film would not have worked without this intense focus. The film's storyline has been labeled inconsistent. It has been cited that the change to a anti-Islamic Hindu fundamenatlist in Kamal Hasan's character was not explained. If a muslim (who was a loyal servant and friend) had murdered your wife I think most people attitudes to your fellow man would change. The film has a consistent plot. The only critisicm is that perhaps the film was too long but overall a great film which is indeed an experiment with truth.
  • An excellently crafted Indian film, the lead actor Kamal Hassan amazes me not only with his histrionics as the lead actor but also as a good writer and director. Technically brilliant, the story has many layers to it. I liked the idea of showing the story in the eyes of a dying old man (good use of prosthetic make-up on Hassan) for whom the past is vivid in memory and the present is bleak. So, the story of the past is in color and the present in Black and White... a novel approach indeed.

    It's a look at a fictitious character who could have been Gandhi's assassin. It's a look at the counter-effect of Gandhi's principles and his decisions (or the lack thereof) on the lives of some of the Hindus. It brings to light something Indian history books were embarrassed to talk about!

    The story itself covers 50 decades and has characters from every region of India, the hero is a Tamil Brahmin, his first wife a Bengali, his best friend a Muslim pathan, his 'guide', a Maharashtrian, and his target, a Gujarati! Rani Mukharjee and Shah Rukh excel in their small but substantial roles. Atul Kulkarni as Abhyankar and singer Vasundhara Das stand out in their debut performances.

    The highlight of the film of course is its background music by Maestro Ilaya Raja. I believe he is the only Asian to have composed a symphony, that too in 30 days flat!!!! There's no composer in India who can match up to this guy. Alas, the Hindi film industry these days encourages only mediocrity and has not recognized this gem from the South! I wish the movie's background music score is made available. Of the songs, there's one which kind of remained in the background for some reason, it is an excellent melody.. 'Har Koyee Samjhe' sung by classical artist, Ajoy Chakraborti.

    Cinematography and art-direction too are flawless. All in all a great film. If you are tired of watching candy-floss romances, inane comedies, garish family dramas and weddings... this is THE antidote! Go for it!
  • I had already said what I had to about this particular movie long ago in the previous version of my review of mine.

    Here I am going to clarify on a few aspects about this movie which some of the so called critics have put forward :

    1. Critic No.1 argues: What has Kamal Haasan shown so different in this movie ? This critic says, Kamal has shown Muslims at first, offending Hindus of all castes and types including the Sikhs,the South Indians,the Maharastrians and others AND this particular Hindu gets into the 5th gear, does an act of revenge and then blames this poor guy Mr. Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi. According to the critic,Kamal instead could have shown the other way round.

    My reply, as a representative of those millions of fans of 'Hey Ram(2000)':

    I would recommend this Critic No.1 to watch movies like "The Legend Of Bhagat Singh(2002)", "Veer Savarkar(2001)", "1947: Earth(1997)". In the "The Legend..." the great Bhagat Singh has a foresight that this Congress is gonna do nothing. The only aim of Congress is to acquire power and then the sentiments of Indian public go to Hell. Now this Congress which believes in so called Equality of Religions in India always looked upon Muslims as nothing but a Vote Bank. M. K. Gandhi was no doubt genuinely interested in the welfare of people but politically protected the Muslims and deliberately overlooked the behaviour of his so called Muslim Brethren. Due to this political immunity the probability that in the freedom riots, the ratio of Muslims offenders to other non-Muslim offenders was 8 : 2 will be the most possible probability and nothing less than that. In "Veer Savarkar(2001)" the great revolutionary Savarkar explains how this Khilafat movement is nothing but a joke, a farce.

    In fact, the Britishers knew that revolutionaries like Bhagat Singh and Veer Savarkar were the REAL danger compared to the moderate M.K. Gandhi. That was the reason why British tortured them like they were in hell ,like they were some pigs in a slaughterhouse. Meanwhile the sweet spotlight was on Mr. M. K. Gandhi and his fasts.

    Deepa Mehta's masterpiece "1947:Earth" reveals the attitude of the minority. But the other Star of the movie was of course the ever-talented Aamir Khan revealing his pure acting brilliance.

    Mr. Critic No.1 should pick any newspaper from any stall from any locality from any Country and he should find major news on the lines of rivalry between America-Iraq, India-Pakistan or Israel-Palastine, the Babri Masjid issue and other such news. You will notice that one of the rival pairs is always a Islamic MILITANT group.

    This problems have been existing since Mr. Mohammad Gajni, then Aurangzeb and Osama Bin Laden and Dawood Ibrahim today.

    2. Now this particular Critic No. 2 argues : This movie contains unnecessary sex.

    My reply,as a representative of those millions of fans of 'Hey Ram(2000)':

    Sex depicted in this movie is at least a lot better and REALISTIC than the UNrealistic rain-dancing of those idiot actors(???) and saree-clad actresses(???) in those nonsense '3 out of 5' star rated movies. Also let's not forget the running around trees in fully forced rain. Did somebody say Influenza ?

    This movie is only made for adults no doubt, but it is meant for ONLY MATURE THOUGHTFUL REASONABLE ADULTS.

    Sex is a nature's creation necessary for propagation of life and a KISS in particular is a universal symbol for expressing Love among living creatures including all animals but definitely NOT flowers as some Indian directors show in their nonsense '3 out of 5' star rated movies something UNNATURAL like flowers kissing each other instead of the hero and the heroine. All these efforts are to please our 70 years old censorship 'virtuous' members. The fact is : We don't need 'virtuous' censorship members but mature,scientific, understanding, reasonable thinkers. BUT one thing I admit : This movie is NOT meant for family viewing where teenagers or children of lesser age are present. Even some adults can be considered as children if they don't possess a proper scientific view while watching movies like this. If sex and violent scenes are removed from this movie it will become a truly visual effects family movie with a message at the end,middle and the beginning.

    In fact, I found a lot positive aspects in 'Hey Ram(2000)' :

    1. The technique used to show blood oozing out of Rani's throat was brutal but was a technical achievement in an Indian movie. The ONLY other time I observed the feat being used was in the legendary Steven Spielberg's Classic Masterpiece 'Saving Private Ryan(1998)' starring the great Tom Hanks.

    2. Visual Effects during the marital bliss(Saket Ram/Maithili) and during the TWISTER scene were visual pleasure to watch.

    3. At the climax, Kamal shows a child representing all the riot affected children and their problems. It's a pity rioting demons don't spare even innocent children.

    4.The so called Astrological expert is blown to smithereens by Saket Ram. If every Indian follows his ideal, those 'Ponga Pandits' will never cheat us of our money.

    5.Even milk goes for a kick and a toss when Saket Ram explains how it was meant only for children and not adults. Then follows a truly hilarious joke by Maithili.

    6. One more myth like millions of others which was prevalent in India was buried that M.k. Gandhi uttered the words 'Hey Ram' moments before death. If a bullet traveling at a speed of 800 miles/hour is shot at you at a POINT BLANK range, your eyes will simply pop out. And here, M.K. Gandhi was a 79 year old man and he was shot by not one but TWO in the chest. If your lungs are that open forget about uttering any words at all.

    7. The only fault Kamal did was a technical one. He shouldn't have shown Gandhi flying backwards when hit by the bullets. FORENSIC STUDIES have positively proved that if a live body is hit by a bullet, the body will simply slump down to the ground.

    Some Other Things : Vasundhara Das, Atul Kulkarni and Shahrukh have performed in an OUTSTANDING way in a life-time role. Shahrukh doesn't over act and this proves Kamal's Effective Direction.

    And now for those who say that this movie is disturbing or controversial :

    All great masterpieces right from 'The Godfather(1972)' to 'Schindler's List(1993)' and to the recent 'The Sixth Sense(1999)' and 'Artificial Intelligence(2001)' all had been controversial but TRUTHFUL EYE OPENERS.

    In fact, according to me, an individual should watch only TWO types of movies :

    1.TRUTHFUL EYE OPENERS : These types expose real facts but violence and sex are not necessities to be depicted. Examples:Kamal Haasan's Hey Ram(2000), Denzel Washington's Cry Freedom(1987), Al Pacino's Godfather(1972/74)series or The Insider(1999), Robert De Niro's The King of Comedy(1983),Morgan Freeman's SE7EN(1995),The Usual Suspects(1995) etc.

    2. PURELY FICTIONAL DREAMLAND FEEL-GOOD MOVIES : These type of movies relieve us of our daily stresses and tensions when watched for fun keeping our brains aside for a while. Example : Steven Spielberg's E.T. : The Extra Terrestrial(1982) or Hook(1991),Beauty and the Beast(1991),The Lion King(1994),Casper(1995), The Batman Movies etc.

    As for the remaining run-of-the-mill type of movies which do NOT belong to any of the above TWO types,I call them DUMB movies made for the similar types of individuals.

    Eg. The extremely torturous The Mummy(1999),MouseHunt,I Know What You Did Last Summer... etc

    These movies are, as Saket Ram says, as SEMI-FICTIONAL as M.K.Gandhi's autobiography.

    ... and I don't prefer semi fiction.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    I hesitate to call this a great film, because it has too many flaws (I was particularly annoyed by the "old Saketh Ram" scenes). Nor is it a film I yearn to see again, like many other films.

    So, why a 10 -- a rating, I've only given to 4 other films?

    Because, more than a dozen years after I first saw it, it remains the most powerful and thought-provoking film I have seen. For answering two questions I had, and also for its powerful transformation. First the questions:

    I had always wondered when I read about riots and seemingly common people going berserk and killing people from another religion, "how could someone kill an innocent person just because they were Sikh/ Muslim / Hindu?" In dialogues with friends, it was easy to pass that away with "It is the uneducated, poor, dis-satisfied -- led by a bunch of thugs," and remain comfortable with the knowledge, "That could never happen to me."

    This movie shows with amazing clarity how a normal peace-loving academic, with no communal feelings, can turn into a killing machine, dispatching Muslims without a shred of remorse. Powerful scenes with the slaughter of the protagonist's wife and his subsequent conversion to avenging angel...

    The second question I had -- I am an unabashed Gandhi-phile, rating him the greatest human that ever lived -- is how could a Hindu want to kill Gandhi? Again, this movie brilliantly depicts how a section of society could fixate on Gandhi as the root of all of India's ills, and determine that his execution was the solution to India's ills. These aren't raving lunatics plotting to kill Gandhi, but patriots -- misguided surely, but patriots in their own minds -- who are willing to kill Gandhi for the good of the nation. Saketh's conversion to the self- appointed assassin is totally believable.

    Finally, apparently a lot of people were upset that this film showed anti-Gandhi sentiments (apparently the irony of stoning theaters to protest a film seemingly disparaging the Apostle of Nonviolence was lost on the protesters). Here is where, I disagree, and the single reason why this film lingers in my mind. (Spoilers follow:)

    THIS IS PROBABLY THE MOST PRO-GANDHI FILM EVER MADE. Yes, even more than Attenborough's deification of the Mahatma.

    Yes, the first 99% of the film is profoundly anti-Gandhi, but at the very end of the film, when Saket Ram repents and goes to seek Gandhi's forgiveness transforms this film completely. Because Saketh Ram's change of heart is driven not by Gandhi himself, but the actions of Amjad Khan (Shahrukh Khan in one of his best roles), Saketh's friend, and a true Gandhian.

    And that transformation is so powerful and authentic, that the film remains fresh in my mind today -- can't wait to see it with my children. And for that reason, flaws and all, I give it a 10.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Read Freedom at Midnight before or After the Movie. Any dumb person can appreciate how perfect the movie is.

    The Story begins in the present, a very old man in his death bed and his grandson noticing his deteriorated condition of the day calls his Doctor friend and plans to make it to the hospital. The Day is May Day. Mid-way through the journey Saket Ram (Kamal) relives his life that appears before him in capsules.

    The period action is splendid.People who really understood the film will agree that Gandhi is the real hero of the film. The fact that he comes roughly around 30 minutes is the greatness of Kamal's direction and way of story-telling!! He would have shot the present in black-n white and the past with Gandhi in Colour and as soon as Gandhi is assassinated, the picture turns Black-n-white again. Just to show that Gandhi gave us Light and it turns black-n-white after his death. Towards the end, Saket's Grandson gets the key of one of Saket's private rooms and he visits it with Gandhi's real GreatGrandson. The movie finishes with both of them opening the windows carved on an image of Gandhi again sharing the same thought tat Gandhi showed light. Again he would shown the fire both in 1940s and present in color depicting how when everything's changed Violence has remained forever and how we haven't learned our lessons fully.

    Hats Off Kamal and Thanks for Giving Indians "Hey Ram", No one could've done even 10percent of this, so forget expecting anything closer!
  • the movie as a whole was realism at its best which is rarely seen in Indian movies. the screenplay was professionalism at its level best and though it did not do well at the box office it is arguably the best movie of any genre. the story is a flashback and the scenes just rollback to the pre -independence era where the situation is quite the same as it is now. the characterisation were well worked out and the music just steals the show. kamal has done a wonderful job and has done away with idiotic songs and comic tracks that is a common thing in all Indian movies. on the whole a movie cannot get any better than this. must see
  • An excellent work by Padmasree KamalHasan! No:1 performance by Kamal proves once again , he is the best actor in the whole globe! The movie is a tribute to the society. Very well pictured.

    The movie is moving with slow pace through out. Though at times we get the feeling that its gonna pace up, but it still moves in slow pace which might have disappointed some viewers and hence the movie couldn't do well in box office!

    I think the background music ram .. ram.. hey hey ram ram.. should have been played through out the movie which would have made this more thrilling!

    Anyways this is a masterpiece!

    Kamal,RaniMukherji, Shahrukh all done a good job!

    Cijo Thomas
  • .....though I'm not a fan of the genre so I haven't seen many. I usually have to find another room to hide in whenever my sister's or mother watch them. One day I saw a scene from "Hey Ram" and was intrigued, so I decided that maybe I'll check it out. After seeing "Sholay", supposedly one of the greatest Indian movies ever made (maybe if you haven't already seen all the Westerns it stole from), and wasn't sure I could bare another one for a while. But I did, and I'm glad. It was far from perfect, but as other's mentioned, it was consistently watchable (it holds three hours of interest well), and features some bravura set pieces. I enjoyed the fantasy/nightmare sequences quite a bit. I think the first poster missed the point of the second sex scene.... it was meant to be more disturbing than sexy.... it occurs during the peak of Ram's decent into madness. I doubt Kamal Hassan meant for a women morphing into a gun to be sexy! Some of the fantasy stuff wasn't entirely successful, but I appreciated the experimentation. The main flaw with the film I thought, was the music.... and I'm not talking about the musical numbers, but the score, which was far too overbearing at times. But over all the film is quite powerful... the acting is sensational all around. Anyway, this is definitely a must see for anyone who (like I once did) that Indian commercial films never attempt to become works of art.
  • There have been instances where a daring movie clicks and becomes a classic, but not all people who make really good movies are lucky to have appreciative audience.This time around KamalHaasam not only seems to expect too much of concentration and open minded analysis from the viewers but also knowledge of Hindi, marathi, Bengali and tamil languages from the viewers. An intelligent viewer can easily understand the movie without really knowing the language, only if he/she knows that understanding the gist of the scene is more than enough to like the movie. I guess a constant insecurity,although totaly unfounded, that one is missing the plot because one doesnt know the language seems to bias the viewers that the moviemaker strategically failed.

    This movie which is a story of a man who is deeply affected by the death of his wife and the brutal way in which she was raped and murdered, avenges her death by killing as many muslims as he can,including the murderers of his wife. He then realisez that anger and hype had made him an animal, a person far different from what he was, returns to his hometown and marries another woman. The anger of his wifes death still burns within him which has been brilliantly potrayed in such a way, that the anger influences him to be lead by religious Hindu fanatics to try and Kill Gandhiji.

    In the process he meets his own Muslim friend , sharukh who still remembers their Old friendship, whereas kamal's mind is clouded by his wifes death plus his mission and behaves like a hindu fanatic. this is where Kamal shows his brilliance as a director by making the hero display emotion which are normally expected from a villain. An excellent portrayal of a slow change in a normal persons mind set.

    The meeting with gandhiji changes his mind, I believe a lot of people in the 1940 and 1950 have undergone a radical change in the way of thinking by speaking with bapuji and SakethRam seems to be one such man. A good tribute to our nations leader who, other than being largely ignored by this country, has also been criticised for the calcutta riots for not doing something, that was beyond the realms of his capacity.

    Anyway The reason I like this movie is because, for the first time a hero's views is portrayed as incorrect and the hero realizes his mistake and changes to a good person in the end. This aspect however escpaes the viewers attention and misintrepreted as a contradiction or inconsistency in the potrayal of the character. But I feel that this aspect was quite obvious and was the whole motive of the movie. I totally detest kamals insistence on wild kissing scenes which are absolutely unnecessary. I am unable to comprehend what originality he could achieve with these scenes.

    all in all a brilliant movie which flopped because we are unfortunatelly blessed with more illiterate viewers in the country and also because the literate are inclined to criticise more than appreciate.
  • Before I discuss the film in depth, I want to talk about the distributor of this DVD--Eros Video. Despite the name, it is not a pornographic film company. But, I am less than impressed by their practice of forcing ads upon the viewer. When the DVD begins, it forces you to watch previews (you cannot hit the menu button to skip them). Then, AFTER you finally push the DVD button to begin the feature, it forces you to watch another ad! This is the only company I know which does this. They also do something else which is terribly annoying--they don't bother to caption the songs sung throughout the film! Come on Eros, are you deliberately trying to get potential customers to deliberately avoid your releases and look for other Indian films to watch instead?! I know that because there are thousands and thousands of Indian films out there, I sure will look for those from other companies first.

    The story is told as a giant flashback by Saketh Ram (Kamal Hassan) and is set in 1946--just a year before India became independent of the United Kingdom. While many in the West may not realize it, this was a VERY scary time in India, as partition into East and West Pakistan and India would help to bring a lot of suppressed hatred between Hindus and Muslims to the surface--and countless people (at least in the hundreds of thousands) would die in sectarian violence. Many more would be forced to immigrate because of this violence.

    Ram adores his new wife--so much so that his friends think he's a bit henpecked and make fun of him. When, in the midst of the violence that is overtaking his city, he sees a woman being attacked by a crowd he rescues her--but, as the expression goes, no good deed goes unpunished! Later, a crowd of Muslims storms his home--raping and murdering his wife! Not surprisingly, he now hates Muslims and joins a group of extremists--determined to kill as many of 'them' as he possibly can. However, he and his new 'friends' come to hate one person more than anyone else...Gandhi. Although a Hindu, Gandhi calls for peace and forgiveness--which enrages these radicals and he is their number one target....and Ram is their chosen instrument of revenge.

    You probably noticed my summary in which I called this a fine but brutal film. Now the brutality certainly is necessary--this film is about a very, very violent time in India and I think everyone should know more about this period in history. But it is NOT a film for the young. While it doesn't show the rape occurring (thank God), it has quite a few scenes of shocking brutality. You can't help but flinch at several scenes--I know I did. Plus, this DID make the movie more realistic and hard-hitting---so have some Kleenex nearby just in case. And what is to like about the movie? Well, a lot...that's for sure. To me one of the best things about the film was choosing Kamal Hassan for the lead. He not only did a good job but looked so ordinary--not the larger than life sexy leading man. This 'ordinariness' of Ram and his wife as well made the film much easier to connect with and appreciate. I also liked the story....with one minor exception. Although the film is told through flashbacks, sometimes you can't tell when it's in the 1940s or the present--and that is a tad confusing--as are some of the surreal dreams. But, these are minor complaints, as the overall film is entertaining, touching and informative.

    For another film about the same period, though told from a different viewpoint, try also watching Deepa Metha's "Fire". I don't think the film is superior to "Hey Ram"--just different and quite touching.
  • This is one of the few Hindi films to take head on issues related with India's partition and succeed. 'Hey Ram' features an impressive performance by Kamal Hasan. His role is complex and its hard to see how anyone else could have done better. There are lots of religious metaphors subtly woven into the script. Naseeruddin Shah is a memorable eccentric Gandhi. Shahrukh Khan has a small role but impresses. The film is very violent and some parts are quite difficult to watch, so beware. The period detail is effective. Ultimately, the film makes a strong plea for tolerance but does so without strident moralizing. Highly recommended.

    Overall 9/10
  • The most eye popping film i have seen. It is bold, brilliant and spares the audience of the candy floss romance. It's not flawless, but worth the watch. Kamal deserved a best foriegn film award for this fil but Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon came along at the same time. Maybe next time!
  • A magical movie from the legend kamal Hassan don't waste your time simply watch this movie 😍
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Hey Ram!!! This movie defines class. Plot Review : Its truly engaging how Saket Ram(KH) after being a victim of the Bengal Riots is made to believe by Hindu Extremist(AK) that MK.Gandhi is responsible for all the Chaos. How the next sequence of events make Saket Ram realize by his own conscience, Amjad Ali Khan (SRK) that Gandhi is the only sanity remaining is the plot of the movie.

    Acting: Kamal Haasan portrays his character in such a great fashion hardly ever seen before : Jubilant, Grief Stricken, Innocent, As an Aveneger , In Severe Dilemma , Man Reformed the range is awesome. Atul Kulkarni as Shriram Abhyankar leaves a very strong impression and was very rightly awarded the National Award. Shahrukh,Saurabh Shukla, naseeruddin shah, Hema Malini, Girish Karnad, Rani Mukherjee , Vasundra Das and all the well known faces have given their best.

    Pros : Good Plot, Nice Acting, Technically Brilliant = Great Film. Cons : Too much gore, more than average sexual content.
  • Kamal Hassan, one of the most popular & talented actors from South started his directorial debut with the funny & entertaining 'Chachi 420' where Hassan mastered the role of an old woman with ease. After a rib- tickling endeavour, Kamal Hassan grabbed the reigns to direct a powerful film of a completely new genre, 'Hey Ram' a film which displayed the communal instability in India post Independence in 1947. The words breathed last by the great leader of our country, Mahatma Gandhi itself reveals the fact that the film is based on a semi-fictional plot involved in the assassination of Gandhi.

    Gathering an ensemble cast from Bollywood, Hassan made it a point to make a very commercial approach to the film. The film starred Kamal Hassan as the protagonist while Bollywood actors like Shah Rukh Khan, Rani Mukherjee, Hema Malini, Naseeruddin Shah & Om Puri handled small but significant roles.

    The film commences on 6th December 1999 which marked the 7th anniversary of the Babri Masjid demolition which invited communal riots between Hindus & Muslims. On this date, in a dark dingy room lay 89-year old Saket Ram on his death bed with his grandson by his side. The film time- travels to the era of 1940's where Pakistan & India where being partitioned and that was the reason why two best friends Saket Ram (Kamal) & Amjad Ali Khan (Shah Rukh), who were archaeologists working for a British named Wheeler were told to stop their work & return back to their respective homes.

    Saket Ram returns back to Calcutta to his Bengali wife, Aparna (Rani) but tragedy follows after him as Aparna gets sexually assaulted & killed by Muslim extremists in the locality. A distraught & enraged Saket Ram meets Abhyankar, a revolutionary who convinces Ram that Mahatma Gandhi is solely responsible for this bloodbath. Succumbed to family pressure, Saket Ram marries a teenager Maithili (Vasundhara Das). The film displays some intimate scenes between Saket & Maithili. The scenes are so detailed that you find yourself astonished as why Censor Board did not intervene with their snipping tool.

    The film revolves entirely around Saket Ram's life as he collaborates with Abhyankar and Maharaja and offers to help them in the plot to assassinate Gandhi. Shah Rukh Khan as Amjad Ali Khan is entirely used as a commercial weapon by Kamal Hassan as inspite of having just 30 minutes in the film; SRK has successfully managed to uplift the standard of the film. He plays a Muslim Pathan who rescues Saket Ram who gets trapped in the communal riots in curfew-struck Muslim community in Delhi.

    The film indeed deserved more of Shah Rukh Khan's exquisite display of acting skills as his inclusion in Hey Ram poster must have promised the viewers a parallel role alongside Kamal. The film has some really advanced & subtle effects, the film although shot in 2000 makes you feel as if the film is shot in the early 60's. The 1999 India scenario is showcased in black & white to distinguish it well with the cinematic representation of happenings in past.

    Hey Ram is powerful as it deals efficiently with universal & contemporary themes set in the post-Independence India. Thanks to Kamal's creative mind & brilliance put into the film, film was chosen as India's official entry to Oscars to be considered as nomination in Best Foreign Film of the year. Hey Ram is story of fictional character whose life gets turned up-side down because of some real life incidents in 1940's that have changed the course of history. The film concludes admirably in a poignant manner

    People having a fine taste for art films, Hey Ram will give you one of the best cinematic experiences of your life.
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