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Resplendent and Grandiose

  • Manu Agrawal

    Manu Agrawal (50 DM Points)

    Desimartini | Updated - October 31, 2013 4:52 PM IST
    3.6DM (335 ratings)
    Ramayana - The EpicWatch trailerRelease date : October 15, 2010

    Somehow, animation never got the respect that it deserves - maybe because of the shoddy treatment that usually accompanies it, or because we feel that not much effort has been expended to create it. No actors to direct, and no sets/locations to build. Nothing can be farther from the truth, however.

    Animation generally requires even more detailed direction: things which we take for granted in a normal movie, like the subtle movements of inanimate objects, and detailing in textures for characters and backgrounds tell us a lot about the capabilities of the Director. And Chetan Desai, thankfully, does not disappoint.

    Welcome to a fitting portrayal of the timeless saga which has been enthralling Indians since the days of yore - Saint Valmiki might as well appreciate this effort too, albeit he may not find any reason behind Rama and his motley crew sporting six-pack abdomens. That is a necessity in Kalyuga, I believe, as superheroes need to look super-cool to actually create an impact on impressionable young minds.

    This version of Ramayana is painstakingly beautiful and extremely realistic, which transcends the animation barrier more than once with its ample usage of overhead shots and unconventional angles. The detailing is perfect - for instance, each strand of hair in Ravan's beard can be independently identified, and his accessories are brought to life each time he bursts with rage - necklaces sway, and eyebrows lift. All of these combine to create a terrifying impact, making the task of slaying him look all the more magnanimous. Portions of the story which have been oft repeated have been snipped away, creating room for lesser known snippets, like how Hanuman tackles the Naag blocking his way to Lanka, and Meghnad's Yagna for a ajeya rath. The most interesting scenes are perhaps those when the simians take over the stage in Kishkindha - the song-and-dance routine brings back memories of the lovable "I like to Move it" song from Madagascar, which was enacted in similar settings.

    Even better are the fight sequences - the raindrops, overhead clouds and the background score set the mood, and the animation is a.l.a Matrix - arrows pierce drops of rain, and towering Bali takes to the ground like Keanu Reeves.

    Bringing to life India's most revered deity, Ramayana - the Epic couldn't have been released at a time more apt - after the Ayodhya judgment, and just before Dussehra. Audiences might actually consider it a part of their duties towards Ram and Sita to watch this one. They wont be complaining, that's for sure at this colorful treat for the senses.

    This one's a collectible - I am sure to buy the DVD when it releases. Lessons in mythology had never been this impact-ful.

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