Raanjhana-Movie Review

24 Jun

Dhanush and Sonam Kapoor starrer Raanjhana was my pick for this weekend. There was an element of curiosity attached to this movie solely because this was Tamil star and national award winner Dhanush’s Bollywood debut. I always wondered how someone who looked so ordinary could be a star and generally was totally skeptical about his acting abilities too, but after seeing Raanjhana, I take all my words back.

Raanjhana is a love story, but a pretty complex one at that. Kundan (Dhanush), a lower middle class Tam-Brahm boy who migrates to Benares with his family, falls in love with Zoya (Sonam Kapoor), a well-off Muslim girl. His feelings are obviously not reciprocated, but his love for her is steady spanning several years, right from childhood to adolescence and finally adulthood. However, his heart is broken when she finally reveals that she’s in love with her college mate, Akram (a cameo by Abhay Deol) and requests Kundan’s help to convince her parents. Akram is a college union leader who nurtures dreams of starting his own political party and promote equality and justice in the country. Kundan does succeed in convincing Zoya’s parents, but on the day of the marriage, he realizes that something’s mysterious in the Zoya-Akram love story. From here, the movie takes a turn, changing from a light romantic track to a serious political pot-boiler.

There are some very good moments in Raanjhana, particularly in the first half. The supporting cast too is very aptly picturised, with Kundan’s friends, Bindiya and Murari doing a great job. The scenes where Dhanush stalks Sonam and gets slapped by her everyday are comical, but sweet at the same time. In fact, in my opinion the first half is almost flawless with the screen play, performances and dialogues all being in sync with each other. The second half though, becomes a tad bit serious and the makers have left a little to the audiences’ interpretations which makes the intentions of the characters mysterious and confusing at times. Also, Abhay Deol looks a little old to be playing a college student and I failed to connect with his character. Nevertheless, there is never a dull moment in the film and credit has to be given to the director, Aanand Rai for making an intelligent and thought provoking film.

Music by A.R Rahman adds to the flavor of the film, with the title track and “TumTak” being my favourites. The cinematography is also spot- on, with Benares being shown in all its glory. This is undoubtedly Sonam Kapoor’s best performance till date and she has proven that there is more to her than just being a fashion icon. Her character has several shades – innocent, mature, flirty, scheming, all of which she essays competently. But the icing on this cake called Raanjhana is undoubtedly, Dhanush. He has carried the entire film on his shoulders and is very endearing as the love-struck simpleton. He has arrived in Bollywood with a bang and what remains to be seen is how he can carry forward this dream debut.

All in all, Raanjhana is a well-made film, though it has its flaws. I would go with 3 out of 5 for Raanjhana. Go watch it for Dhanush!!

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