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One just saw the updated version of Maharabharata recently and had very high expectations from the updated version of Ramayana, as this film was being publicised as (the Sita haran episode). This movie has 4 film directors, Mani Ratnam, Santosh Sivan, Shaad Ali (Saathiya, Bunty aur Babli & Jhoom Barabar Jhoom) & Vijay Krishna Acharya (Tashan). No wonder the result is RAAVAN.
Poorly scripted, badly edited, with the worst performances from the lead cast, half way through the movie you start asking yourself the question: What is worse, the film or the fact that you are watching the film?
The movie throws a lot of questions at you - There is no characterisation of Beera (Abhishek B.). Is he a naxalite or a brigand? What were the issues that made him a mass leader? Why was Dev (Vikram, strong screen presence in the first half) so anti Beera? Was there an ideological clash between the both of law v/s lawlessness? Why did the enigmatic Beera, turn into a simple revenge seeking dacoit, running around the jungle? Till the interval, you feel no connection with any character.
Mani uses silence as a form of dialogue quite often, which can be an excellent idea, but in this venture it falls flat. The movie inspite of being 2 hrs 10 minutes, is long drawn. The unnecessary long scenes between Abhi-Ash are incoherent. The music, surprisingly Rahman seemed disinterested, does no good to the proceedings on screen. Santosh Sivan does a job par excellence in his cinematography, but the excessive use of rain and water gets to you past a point. The dialogues are mundane and boring.
In terms of performances, the less said the better. Abhishek has no scope to perform besides keep on grunting and making faces. What was the fetish of painting his face at the drop of a hat, be it mud, haldi, saw dust...He tries to look menacing but due to the lack of characterisation, fails. His only worthwhile scene is when he sees the plight of his sister (Priyamani, short but good performance) after being mauled by the cops. Aishwarya has nothing to do other than look good in dark Sabyasachi outfits and scream. Vikram is good in the pre interval portions, but again post interval, just moves around brandishing his gun and shooting whatever he can. Nikhil Dwivedi is okay. The only 2 people who bring life to their erstwhile dead characters are Govinda (Hanuman) & Ravi Kissen (Kumbhkaran).
Kept getting the feeling throughout that Mani had ventured out to put in a lot more characters but guess they all landed up on the wrong side of the editing table (am sure I saw Sachin Khedekar, Sadadshiv Amrapurkar (maybe am wrong here), also the credits featured the name of Maushami Chatterjee!). The movie, although well intended from Mani Ratnam, fails to make a mark. The only reason I would give this 3/10 is because of 1) Govinda 2) Santosh Sivan and 3) Rahman's song 'Ud ja' during the end credits as if telling the audiences that they should leave now!
Does this have the 'Y' Factor - Definitely NOT!
Dont waste your time and money on this one. Instead go and see a rerun of GURU!