Movie Review: Raees – Old Wine In New Bottle… Highly Disappointing!

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This week saw the release of much-awaited Raees starring Shah Rukh Khan (the movie was in the making and then in the cans for the longest time ever). The movie promos gave a perception that it had the best recipe for a sure shot hit. With few catchy dialogues thrown in – Baniye Ka Dimaag Aur Miyan Bhai Ki Daring…. a special item number with Sunny Leone thrown in for the front benchers. Some daredevilry fights punched in. And, overall the biggest star of the country SRK leading the way ahead. But, did the recipe actually work for Rahul ‘Parzania’ Dholakia and Farhan Akhtar‘s production house that we will have to wait and watch at the box office. Coming to the movie, let’s analyze if it was worth the wait.

Shah Rukh Khan plays Raees a spectacled goon who hates being called “battery”. He and his childhood friend cum sidekick (Mohammad Zeeshan Ayub) – how can a hero be without a sidekick; start from harmless Ponzi schemes to pre-planned rackets and becomes the top bootlegger of his town. How can a story about a criminal be complete without a police officer; so Raees meets his equal when ACP Majmudar (Nawazuddin Siddiqui) is posted in his area. Raees forms a nexus with politicians who fuel his business, but he soon becomes the thorn in their side. No Hindi film hero can be complete without a lady love and therefore we have Mahira Khan added to the cast to give some respite to Raees’ character whenever he is tired of running his criminal activities and cat and mouse game with the police.

The problem is with the script in totality. Rahul Dholakia and his writers have not offered anything new that we have not seen in earlier movies. Just putting the characters in 70’s and 80’s does not bring novelty to a plot. Even Shah Rukh’s performance is hampered because of the shoddy screenplay. Also, it is high time SRK did some analysis of his atrocious choices of movies after Chak De India. We want better movies from you Shah Rukh.

Nawazuddin, as usual, is good in his character but again the story and screenplay is the villain here. Even a wonderful performer like Mohammed Zeeshan Ayub as well as Atul Kulkarni are wasted in insignificant roles. Casting of Mahira Khan in the movie and creating a controversy around her was all a hoax. Any junior artist could have done her role.

Coming to the music. Ram Sampath does a decent job but the songs sound very jaded and very 90’s. Cinematography by K.U. Mohanan is first rate. Action scenes are okay and in few places, we feel the action director got confused if he was making a Superman or Batman or Antman movie and has made SRK perform like one. Editing by Deepa Bhatia could have been crispier especially in the second half. Coming to direction, I would rather advise Rahul Dholakia to make his brand of movies like Parzania than attempt potboilers that do not make any sense at all.

Overall, the movie is an utter disappointment.

My Verdict: **/5

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