Before I begin, I’ll list out the things I enjoyed about this film:
- “Color Color” (from Swastik) is an awesome song and it makes me happy to hear it at any time.
- The fun little contest my friend and I had, where we were trying to outdo each other by predicting the film’s next scene which led into us predicting the dialogue as well. It was a pretty neck and neck contest.
- That one moment where someone hurt Anant Nag which almost broke my heart. That’s not because I felt bad for his character. It’s just that Anant Nag is one of my favorite actors of all time and I just can’t see that happen to him. That’s the solitary moment where I felt anything while watching this “film” on-screen.
Right, Now. Please keep any disagreements civil and let’s have a conversation as opposed to screaming matches.
Raajakumara is just another film in the long line of movies which are made by a group of people who know how to appeal to the general public’s lowest form of expectations.
I want to reveal the secret little checklist the filmmakers had while making this film:
- Big star in our leading role who is related to a megastar of yesteryear – check
- Myriad of references to the megastar’s work so that audiences recognizes that easily and we don’t have to do the legwork to make ourselves stand out while totally throwing our lead actor’s credibility or likeability under the bus for who he is as a person – check
- Random female lead who has nothing to offer – check
- Male lead is just such a good guy that it makes God jealous – check
- Get big name actors (Prakash Raj, Anant Nag, Dattatreya, Sarath Kumar etc) to add gravitas to underwritten roles – check
- Have a plot where the “Hero” respects his parents but with no discernable character moments written in – check
- Have a plot where “Hero” says sending your parents to a retirement home is immoral but won’t explore why this phenomenon occurs and go into all the complex emotional issues at play – check
- “Hero” saves kids with non-descript diseases while making vague statements about healthcare – check
- “Hero” beats all the ass without being in danger even once and with fight geography thrown out the door – check
- Throw in a hefty dose of communal harmony because we are all “good guys” here and say foreign countries have no soul – check
So do we have everything to make a lowest common denominator blockbuster here guys?
Yes, boss. Let’s get this show on the road.
I hate being mean to movies. It really takes a toll on me everytime I have to do something like this. I hate not being in tune with the audience at large and I hate to think I’m sitting on a high chair talking down to people. All I want to see is a good film, not great or mind-blowing, just good. A few good characters, a relatable and focused plot and a few good scenes. This will be enough to make me go home happy. But this film has none of those to offer.
I dislike films like this because they know how to play a large audience. They have all these little beats which play the audience without them even realizing it. They use universal themes in the worst ways possible so that people get non-threatening, easy to digest content that lulls them into thinking they are watching something good. Films like this don’t give the audience a singular moment with a challenging idea that makes them think for themselves. Everything is neatly spelled out with a bow on top because they know what the audience wants to hear.
They beat the audience subconsciously by including a whole host of references to the late great Dr. Rajkumar’s films. I see the film for what it is when it does that, an underbaked film with nothing original to offer which has chosen to stand on the shoulders of giants and call itself tall but most others don’t see it that way. The film elevates itself in the eyes of the audience at large because they just may think “Hey, I know that movie. I love Dr. Rajkumar. This bullshit movie must good if it’s referencing his work and has his son in it”. I’m just tired of this phenomenon. This is rampant across every regional film industry including Bollywood and I despise it.
If you want to show respect to your lineage of great thespians, make a great movie that they would be proud of. Period.
I like Puneeth Rajkumar, he has improved in leaps and bounds since his debut as a leading man (not counting his work as a child star). I love Anant Nag and Prakash Raj. Those two men will stand out in the annals of Indian cinema as two of its trailblazers. I have a deep appreciation for almost everyone else in the cast and crew because I know their work, I’ve seen the quality they can bring on-screen. This film is nowhere close to what they can truly do in terms of quality.
As I said before, all I want is a good time at the movies where a movie is made with some heart and soul in it. What I don’t want to see is a pandering waste of time and resources where my spur of the moment, offhanded jokes about Santoor make their way into the script.
You have the time, the money and the talent guys. Please take advantage of it.