Blogdosts, let's get a few things straight - the movie has made money. Does personal opinion really matter?? Naaaaaaah!
This appeared in Bombay Times today....
What were you thinking, SRK?
When a hotelier scouts around for a new property, he keeps just one mantra in mind : Location.Location. Location. This is the only formula that works in that line of business. Similarly, when a film maker decides to make a movie, the only mantra worth following is : Script.Script.Script. After sitting through half of Ra.One ( I rarely leave a movie mid-way, but this one propelled me out of the multiplex at intermission), I was totally perplexed! SRK is one of the smartest, most hard working human beings in the film industry. How did he go so wrong? Could he not see the obvious flaws? Judge the mood of his audience? Tweak and fix all that was cringe- making and deeply embarrassing about his magnum opus? And let’s not get into the numbers game here and talk about how much it has raked in and how much more will be made once the hisaab kitaab is completed? There was much, much more riding on this film, than just box office collections. SRK knows that, too. His singular lack of judgment in backing such a mish mash of a movie makes fans gnash their teeth in frustration and ask what has happened to their superhero?Not only is the whole nerdy South Indian ‘Appa’ angle completely off ( come on, how many South Indian men shovel noodles with dahi into their mouths and keep repeating ‘Aiyooo’ in a fake accent?). But so was the Punjabi Kudi Kareena as a gaali researcher North Indian biwi! Bebo as the mother of a precocious pre-teen ‘Baba’? No way! The opening scene was so gauche and amateurish one almost expected a ‘Mogambo Khush Hua’, dialogue during what was meant to be a hi-tech, state of the art presentation in London. And why was SRK the Southie scientist wearing a gollywog wig and make up? How insulting! As for that dreadful sexist scene of SRK looking for keys buried inside a white woman’s cleavage , really! Gross.
The little boy (Amaan Verma) playing Prateek should immediately sign up for a range of hair products, with that glossy mop. And SRK should go off on a relaxing vacation. He has really earned it. Never has a movie star flogged himself this hard to promote a film. If only he had invested half that energy rewriting the awful script, the movie could have been salvaged somewhat. There were so many unconnected parallel tracks going on, it was confusing and annoying…. like watching half-a-dozen movies clumsily spliced together by an editor high on something very potent. Such a pity, given the potentially sound basic premise ( a father dying to be his son’s hero). But even that was ruined by the ridiculous mugging scene. Besides, if there is a moral in all this it is that special effects are no substitutes for a story. Ra.One is an example of how to blow up several millions – literally speaking – on so little.If kids are the target audience, wouldn’t they prefer to buy the latest video game with a more convincing plot? Poor SRK.It’s all about timing. So much déjà vu is bad for business.Had audiences not watched Rajnikanth as Chitti in ‘Robot’ (superb and similar special effects, plus an emotional track) and related to that character, Ra.One may not have received such a drubbing. Unfortunately, even young fans ended up saying, “Been there.Done that.”