Rang Rasiya Movie Review: A colorful cinematic voyage
When art meets cinema, then reproduction on screen is blissfully romantic and awe-worthy. The maestro, Ketan Mehta has done it yet again and he has given to all a cinematic experience worth remembrance. The man who pioneered the biopic trend in India with Mangal Pandey, Ketan Mehta brings to life another unsung hero from the pages of history. He brings on the forefront the tale of Indian gem, Raja Ravi Varma, sadly forgotten and unknown to many. The film was supposed to release in 2008, but finally found a release in India in 2014 after much deliberation and ado while passing it through the Censor board.
Raja Ravi Varma is that man who gave Gods and Goddesses face and brought laurels for the country. His acclaim was far-fetched and humungous, much so that he was given a Post Office of his own. But it is disheartening to see that nobody remembers that great artist now.
It is the story of Ravi Varma and his muse Sugandha, who was so inspirational to him that he gave art a new form. One of the most controversial cases in the British History was put up against this man, which raged many wings of our society then. But his reasons and free art form and its expression led to something even more resplendent.
Randeep Hooda was given the role after Ketan saw him in Risk and D, and it was the on-set of the acting career for him. Randeep has delivered a brilliantly intense performance. He played a 20 year old as well as a 60 year old, and in both the age groups you’d find yourself oogling at the man. When a character is well-written and fascinating, there comes a certain pressure on the actor to perform well. But Randeep eases into the skin of the character so effortlessly that you immediately accept him in Raja Ravi Varma’s avatar. It might not be wrong to just consider this to be his finest performances throughout his career.
Nandana Sen as Sugandha, is simply mesmerizing. She is gorgeous and on screen her beauty is angelic. She has dared to bare while she is extremely confidant and comfortable about her body. In a country like India, it is never too easy for a woman to be bold as whenever someone tried to do so, they have received rave responses. But the way it has been and the way Nandana has performed, it is par splendor. The character is pivotal to the whole plot and every emotion has been depicted on screen with sheer perfection.
Paresh Rawal’s role as Govardhan Das, Jim Boevan as Fritz, Gaurav Dwivedi as Ravi’s brother and others, all have played their part with precision.
Ketan Mehta has shown how ingenious this filmmaker is. He has brought on the screen an untold story and has essayed it so vividly, that you might as well fall in love with it. Even the minutest details have been given ultimate importance and have made the film what it is. The way Ravi Varma’s life is told; Sugandha’s role; Dada Sahab Phalke’s beginning; the first reaction of Indian audiences at the screening using cinematograph; the introduction of Press; the trend of saris; the reproduction of prints and selling of photos of Gods and Goddesses; the lucent usage of color and of course the captivating paintings; all have been given full justice by Ketan and you can’t help but admire his work.
The music by Sandesh Shandilya will reverberate in your ears and special mention to Sangita Kathiwada for the gorgeous costumes. The cinematography by the man behind movies like Khamoshi, Saathiya, Jab Tak Hai Jaan, Lagaan, Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam and others; Anil Mehta; adds another feather to his expert cap.
Watch or Not:
It is a must watch affair. Watch it as homage to the man who gave Indian Art a new dimension. Watch it for the scintillating performances by Randeep and Nandana. Watch it to witness the sheer brilliance from the eyes from ace director. And lastly, watch it for a colorful cinematic voyage that will leave you awed.
Thumbs Up: Cinematography, direction, story, music, brilliant performances
Thumbs Down: We would have loved to see more of Raja Ravi Verma