Ra.One was supposed to hit a triple home-run. Ra.One was supposed to melt me inside out with its massive scale and mindblowing shimmery effects. Ra.One was supposed to be not just good, but awesomely great, and pave the way for the future of Indian cinema to wake up and smell the digital coffee, rather than sit on that melodramatic Karwa-Chauth and Sagai flavoured couch. Of all the things, Ra.One did manage to possibly give a taster for the things that could be in the future. But at the end of it all, it falls way short of my expectations. Oh how much I wanted to like this movie, but even with the best of my efforts, this movie swings between the extremes of annoying slapstick and total wtf-ery. Of course there is a whole bunch of shit loaded in this vehicle which kept me engaged and entertained. Butthere is a whole bunch of absolute dog poo as well. The script is so flawed and mindless, that I can only facepalm at the thought that the talented makers spent almost 5 years to end up with a product like this. As a faithful consumer of this product, this is my open letter to the makers – Shahrukh Khan, Anubhav Sinha and the writers. Here are my 5 complaints against Ra.One.
P.S. I invite SRK fanbois and gals can actively protest and counter my points in the comments section.
**5 Complaints Against Ra.One**
1. K.I.S.S. (Keep It Simple, Stupid)
KISS is an engineering principle, followed by designers worldwide. So it is indeed such a shame to see the ‘designers’ of Ra.One screwing that principle, in the face. I don’t get what the point is when it comes to writing a simple and straightforward Good vs Evil script. Why would you wander off forcibly injecting unnecessary amounts of slapstick of the “BAD” kind. This is bloody 2011, and no one, absolutely no one enjoys humour of the ‘Rajendranath’ types. I don’t find it funny when SRK has curly hair to justify his Subramaniam lineage. I don’t find it funny when he has to eat curd with noodles. And seriously, what was that thing about Bebo’s thesis on Indian gaalis – in London? Was that a linguistic thesis? How difficult is it to focus on the Good vs Evil theme, by giving us more info about the background of Ra.One / G.One, rather than focussing on SRK’s parenting issues and crotch being hit by a football.
The movie has a serious issue with consistency. On one hand, SRK’s Shekhar Subramaniam has an issue with being not-so-fluent in Hindi and also being bad with English pronunciation (That MJ impression was atrocious and whoever wrote that scene needs to have a career counselling done right away. Seriously dude, get a day job). But when it comes to delivering idioms to his beloved son Prateek, all of that goes straight out of the window. The man effectively delivers those lines like an Urdu Shaayar in a Lucknow Mushaayra.
Another point to be noted – WTF is this Ra.One game? Is it a simulator, to be played with those Mo-Cap gear, or is it like Virtua Fighter meets Mortal Combat? In the expo, when the game is released, or even when little Prateek gets an exclusive test run in the lab, he has the mo-cap gear on. But this is meant for wider public release on a gaming console – (there are PS3 and nVidia logos flying all across). How does that sum up? If it is indeed a Mo-Cap simulator like XBOX Kinect, then how the fuck did Prateek get a DVD, and start simulating the moves in his home PS3.
Finally, the H.A.R.T. is supposed to be a virtual thing, with no special physical significance. In the real world, it is just another glowing bulb. How does the divide between the real and virtual get bridged? No body cares a single fuck about explaining that to me. Speaking of which, in the final climax fight Level 3 – how the hell did Ra.One, G.One and Prateek go from being inside the lab to being teleported into a virtual map, with burning lava and all the explosions. And how the hell did Prateek get out of it. No answers!
3. Seriously, Lucifer ?!?
Speaking of Prateek, if your son has an online avatar by the name of Lucifer, you have some real thinking to do, than to try and impress him by creating an evil villain, or writing a thesis on Indian feminisation of swear words. This is a 10-11 year old we are talking about, who by the looks of it, likes Iron Maiden’s Eddie (which is great), MJ’s Bad (again great), but bullies around fat kids in the class. And we are supposed to root for him? If it was me, I’d get that little bastard bitch slapped in the face and teach some manners first.
Further, there is not even a moment spent on explaining Prateek’s genius in coding, and how a 10 yr old gets around with fiddling the source code of apparently a programme which has complex AI logic, when all we know of him is his ability to identify if a PC is connected to LAN or not. Logic fucked in the earhole.
4. Sanju and Piggy Chops.
Sanju Baba’s sleepwalking routine continues even outside his Housefull and Dhamaal movies, and in a brief cameo (thank God for that!), he shows how really really bad (in the worst way possible) can a Khalnayak be. And skimpily clad, lady in red Priyanka Chopra does nothing to make it look good. The whole dream sequence was just another ‘najaayaz’ opportunity to show off SRK’s packs.
5. The curse of Level 3
Finally, the mother of all complaints. This is supposed to be an awesome game, with an awesome villain. And it has just 3 levels. And oh, if you don’t have the HART, no one dies. How stupid of the villain to not have figured that out? Seriously, would you buy a game for say £40.00, with just 3 levels?
Besides, what is Ra.One’s motive? To get even with Lucifer who kicked his ass in the first two levels. What will he do when he’s done killing Lucifer? What would then be his purpose? A bald Arjun Rampal roaming around streets of London, like a hungry Hobo, shooting red Rasengans. A hero is only as good as his villain. And with the limited menacing factor of Ra.One, G.One is reduced to just a techno baby sitter. Not a really good role for a superhero capable of jumping through roofs and shooting those Kapow energy balls.
Of course there are a few more complaints that’s burning up my mind.
#. Like what is with Satish Shah’s compulsive obsession with power yoga’s connection with the pelvic thrust?
#. All Chinese are not Jackie Chan..but this one knows Kung Fu..fo sho!
#. A gaming convention in London, and the lady (Shahana Goswami) addresses the audience in Hindi. And all my European mates nod in agreement. Also, this so called tech-aware junta get totally bowled over by a Hologram projection.
#. What is with the sheer amount of booty popping, booby groping, and crotch kicking? So many bruised bollocks!
To conclude, to me, Ra.One was a mixture of these complaints, and a string of other stuff which I quite liked. And hence, it is a mixture of some goodness and some absolute crap. I will be discussing the 5 awesome things about Ra.One in part 2 of the review. For the time being, comment away in the comments section below.
And just for the record – the OKS rating for the movie: 2.5 Condom Condom out of 5