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RA.ONE - Movie Review : A more on graphics and less on entertainment, one time watch, 150 crores extravaganza. (Review by Bobby Sing)

26 Oct, 2011 | Movie Reviews / 2011 Releases / Inspired Movies (Alphabetical) / R

Super-humans films are being made in Indian Cinema since the Black & White era but we all actually started enjoying it since MR. INDIA in 1987 and then went on to appreciate the new age trend started by Rakesh Roshan with his KOI MIL GAYA (2003) and KRRISH (2006). Recently the Super-Star Rajnikanth re-invented the genre with his ROBOT or ENDHIRAN (2010) and the audience simply loved it in a huge way.

So it was pretty obvious that after the magnificent show put up by ROBOT, Shahrukh’s RA-ONE was being unanimously discussed among the cine-fans in a doubtful tone. The similar kind of set-up and story idea was the basic reason behind that and every true fan of KING KHAN was simply praying that all these doubts are strongly proved wrong at the day of its release this Diwali.

But now as the film is being shown in the theaters with more than 4000 prints all over India and abroad, the news is sadly not so encouraging for the die hard fans of Shahrukh. However since its undoubtedly the biggest film of Hindi Cinema ever made, hence it rightly demands a detailed discussion of the project under the following heads:

The Film
Talking about its commercial business, RA-ONE may fetch a phenomenal start shattering many previous records all over the globe. But in cinematic terms the film starts off at a very bad and mediocre note. The opening dream sequence featuring Shahrukh, Sanjay Dutt and Priyanka Chopra interacting within a game with their Hit songs being played in the background, is a big let-down. Though shot brilliantly, it straight away makes the viewer think that “Has the movie really started?”. And then there are names of three lady Bruce Lees written on the screen which again make you wonder that “Is this really a Kids movie?”

In true words, the first hour of the film is well short of all the over-hype created by the KING KHAN himself since it neither introduces you with its Super-human G-ONE, nor it entertains you enough with its unimpressive family scenes and extremely long computer lab sequences of making the game called RA.ONE.

As disclosed before its release, the film talks about two super-human characters who step out of their virtual game into the real world and then need to be rectified in time. The one line story gets predictable the moment you meet G-ONE the good robot, coming out to fight with the bad one called RA.ONE. So from the story point of view you have nothing in store to surprise you right till the end.

But apart from its technical brilliance the film fails to impress you with it execution too. Like the first sequence where Shahana is introducing the technology in a small auditorium, doesn’t really match the enormity of the project. Secondly it was really surprising that there were only 3-4 people working in the huge computer lab making the Big game called RA.ONE.

The first half majorly keeps talking about the father-son relationship in an uninteresting manner and the film actually starts after almost one hour of many emotionless family scenes. But as the hero G-One comes on the screen, it kicks off from there with some splendid graphical representation of the two robots and starts making an impact. Post-intermission too it offers an enjoyable fight sequence taking the story onto the Mumbai Airport, but later on steps on to a completely predictable platform, ending it all with a pretty weak and ordinary climax.

To be straight, they may have spent 150 crores on the project but even then its nothing close to a very well thought off, worked upon or exceptionally planned project since it is all based on a badly written script which ignores the entertainment factor completely and unintelligently relies more on only its graphical content. In simple words, keeping the technology merit apart it’s just another usual Bollywood project where compulsory songs can start any moment, a forced comic track is squeezed in which rarely works and has a little bit of emotional outburst too to keep the ladies engaged.

So despite of the fact that Shahrukh puts his full efforts in the movie flying from one building to another, exploding many costly cars into the sky, stopping a speedy train with his bare hands and also dancing on the hit track of Chhammak Chhallo, RA.ONE still fails to create the desired euphoria in the audience due to its routine, predictable storyline and a badly written screenplay.

Technological Excellence Achieved in its Computer Graphics
Moving over its negative points, RA.ONE unarguably is the best effort ever made in Hindi Cinema, as far as computer generated graphical sequences are concerned. The film sets new standards of film making, which can easily be rated as very close to the international standards of the West. However I many times feel that why our Indian Super Hero always seems to be hanging from an invisible wire while gliding down with the girl in his arms and the same is never the case in any foreign film.

With a stunning production design, RA.ONE becomes a treat to watch, only if you are interested in this part of the film-making alone. So all video-game addicts are sure going to love it for its outstanding technical excellence achieved but I sincerely wish it was also backed by some great writing too.

Shahrukh’s dilemma of making a single movie for both India and Abroad
Due to his huge popularity in both parts of the world, Shahrukh’s films always find themselves in the dilemma of incorporating content for both kind of markets together in one project which is indeed not an easy task to do for any writer or director. In the past Shahrukh has been successfully dealing with it in his HIT films but in RA.ONE he messes up with the content unfortunately.

In order to achieve the said objective, the first part of the film is set in abroad showcasing all the western family culture and school sequences related to Shahrukh’s kid. Whereas post interval the film comes back to Mumbai purposefully to entertain his Indian fans which in turn leads to more confusions and unanswered questions, such as “How on earth the robot RA.ONE managed to fly (or board a flight) from abroad to the Indian Region”. Hence this time Shahrukh’s move to satisfy everyone on the planet falls flat.

Emotional Quotient and Viewers Connect
IF you recall Rakesh Roshan’s movies made on the similar subject, then you would agree that they mainly worked because of their expressive emotional quotient and an instant connect with the viewers. But RA.ONE simply has nothing to offer in this respect since it completely fails to connect with the viewers both in emotional and entertaining terms. While watching the film, one neither feels any pain for the suffering family nor feels connected in any way to the cause for which G-One is actually fighting. To my surprise, there is nothing specially conceived or written in the script keeping the kids in minds, which in my opinion can become a big drawback for the film.

Moreover, just think that whenever we consider a Super-Human then he is supposed to be a savior for everyone around in the city. But in RA.ONE, here is a Super-Hero who is only concerned to save the members of one particular family and rest of the world simply means nothing to him, which is highly unacceptable as per the set standards of the concept. Hence if the Super-Hero is there to save only one family, then how can all the people sitting in the theater ever feel connected or related to him?

Unexpected and Totally Avoidable Vulgarity in a Super-Hero film which ideally is meant for the Kids.
In a highly objectionable manner RA.ONE goes down to the level of being called disgusting when the film uses many avoidable sexual references, right in the first five minutes and then repeatedly in its various sequences, even featuring the kids in it.

In fact, it was really unacceptable for a film which is ideally meant to be a Kids movie, to use such words and actions in its key sequences. For instance just imagine, the kid of 8-10 years saying Condom laughingly or asking G.ONE to grab the main part of his opponent. Further, a fat lady teacher dancing like a pole dancer in front of her students, the supposed to be good robot G.ONE patting on Kareena’s back saying “Babes”, gazing at the cleavage of a beautiful girl or grabbing Kareena’s chest and then a Gay police officer (with suggestive expressions) asking G.ONE to take off his shirt showing the places where he has got rings pierced on his body.
Crossing the limits, just let me know that which kids movie expects the tender aged children to laugh at names such as “Iski LeeUski Lee & Sabki Lee”, who are the imaginary Lady warriors in a game, shown on the screen.

If this is what Shahrukh was willing to show to the kids all over India and abroad in the name of a Super-Hero film then I am really sorry for all the families who had and who would be taking their kids along to see this movie.

Coming right to the point, only Arjun Rampal from the entire star-cast, is able to make some kind of impact in his short but powerful portrayal of RA.ONE, followed by Armaan Verma playing Shahrukh’s talented kid. Otherwise it’s a big thumbs down in the performance department since one never gets to see the real confident Shahrukh Khan ever in the entire film. No doubt KING KHAN’s fans would love watching him as the Super-Hero but at the same time they are also going to miss the love and warmth in the emotionless act delivered by their adorable star. In fact the initial scenes of Shahrukh 2 as the G-ONE even reminded me of his performance in MY NAME IS KHAN. And I really didn’t like him making a mockery of South Indian geniuses working in the IT world in his weird kind of hair-style.

Kareena Kapoor is there is the film, only because there has to be a female good looking showpiece in a super-hero movie and she does it to perfection. And then there are loads of artists simply wasted in their short scenes such as Shahana Goswami, Dilip Tahil, Sanjay Dutt, Priyanka Chopra, Satish Shah and more.

And talking about the small cameo by the Super-Star Rajnikant, I would like to rate that scene as an insult to his majestic stature in the Indian Film Industry, which cannot be forgiven by any ardent fan of HIS ever. In reality the way, both Anubhav Sinha and Shahrukh Khan have conceived that particular scene, puts me into doubts about their real intention of using the Super-Star more for the betterment of their project and less out of sheer respect for the phenomenon.

A more than 150 crores project, essentially needs to be backed by a great soundtrack. But here Vishal-Shekhar are able to give you only one HIT number and that too taking the support of another big name in the World Music, AKON. All the other songs in the film are just above average and they do not deserve to be a part of such mega project for sure. Getting over-confident with their prestigious project, Vishal-Shekhar also come up with a loud background score inspired by R. D. Burman notes. Like the G.One musical call, looks straight coming from the prelude of the song “Duniya Mein Logon Ko” from APNA DESH.

When I was first informed about Anubhav Sinha directing this mega venture, I was confused upon the choice made by the Team Shahrukh. And now after watching its final version, I feel more puzzled upon the decision taken with such a huge amount of money on stake. Anubhav Sinha has always given stylish movies with minimum content in the past and he continues doing the same with RA.ONE too. But this time he is going to regret this Big mistake made forever, cause this was probably the biggest break he could ever get in the Film Industry. In short, you got to blame Anubhav alone for this whole debacle made ignoring the basic necessity of making a film i.e. a powerful script. And he can only escape the blame in case Shahrukh was there trying to be the Ghost Director of the film, deliberately interfering in its every department as the Big Influential producer.

Dialogues / Screenplay / Cinematography
As discussed above the film has a very weakly written script with a very uninteresting screenplay which doesn’t give the audience or the kids even one enjoyable scene to cheer at. And the point to be considered here is that this screenplay only is written by 4 talented persons from the Industry. The dialogues are even worse than the screenplay, using many objectionable sexual terms which should not be there in a Super-Hero movie which is mainly going to be seen by families together having kids of all ages.
Thankfully the cinematography is first rate giving you at least something to praise in the costly venture. Few of the chase sequences and fights between the two robots are really worth watching.

Though RA.ONE surpasses every Hindi Film made till date using the computer graphics as a major part of its screenplay. Still I cannot rate it as the best ever effort made in the entire Indian Film Industry due to the obvious reasons. Hence the crown unarguably remains with Shankar for his fabulous work in ROBOT or EDHIRAN which undeniably had many more and better CGI sequences as compared to RA.ONE.

In fact Team Shahrukh has taken several inspirations from ROBOT itself. Like the train chase sequence where Shahrukh is running all over the speeding train and the multiple numbers of robots coming in the climax to confuse G.One, both these scenes are clearly inspired from the Original.

Inspirational Factor
Apart from its inspiration taken from ROBOT, RA.ONE has several references of classic Super-Hero films such Frankenstein, Terminator-2Spider-ManIron-ManBatman, Bicentennial Man and Matrix. It even has a parking scene inspired from one of the episodes of Mr. BEAN and also has a poster taking inputs from the one designed for BATMAN where the hero is holding the lady in his both hands. Other than these, the coward father and the provoking child relationship also reminded me of a Kishan Kumar film called “Papa The Great” (2000), which was too based on the same theme. And interestingly Kishan Kumar is one of the owners of T-Series, the company which has released the music of RA.ONE.

In all I really felt very sad after watching the costliest ever film made in the history of Hindi Film Industry, as I seriously wanted it to be a BIG HIT for the sake of the Industry itself. But the truth remains that you cannot sell a weak product by only over publicizing it before its release coming at every radio/tv channel, newspaper, magazine and other advertisement mediums. Because in the end its only the content which will bring in both the praises and the audiences into the theater.

Rating : 1.5 (for the movie) + 1 (for its technical brilliance achieved) = 2.5 / 5

Tags : Ra.One Movie Review by Bobby Sing, Ra.One Film Review by Bobby Sing, Ra.One Review, Raone Film Review, Ra1 Film Review, Movie Ra.One Review, Inspired Movies, Inspired Movies, Inspired Cinema, Bollywood Plagiarism, Plagiarism in Hindi Cinema, Copied Movies, Movies Inspired From, Movie is Inspired By, Borrowed Concepts, Inspired Plots, Bollywood & Hollywood, Reviews by Bobby Sing, Bollywood Gets Inspired, Cinema Gets Inspired, Bollywood & World Cinema, Inspiration from World Cinema, Bollywood Movi
26 Oct 2011 / Comments ( 17 )
manish bhardwaj

I wanted to comment something, But you have left nothing to be said. Anyhow i must appreciate your detailed review. At least here the audience is not taken for granted.
I hope Srk may recover from don 2. he also mentioned in one of the interviews that now they have the technology and this can be used in the upcoming sequel(or any other movie) with much less cost..
I don\'t think that a movie should be hyped this much it will only end up in disappointment of the audience.

Bobby Sing

Thanks Manish for appreciating the detailed review and I also really now waiting for Don2 to bring the same magic back on screen.
Still no doubt that RA.ONE will go on to set nee Box Office records due to his die hard fans all over the world.

Robin Chawla

Hi Bobby Bhaji...this by far is the most genuine and detailed review of this movie . I mean this is first time in my life i read a review so accurate on every possible aspect of movie..according to me u r the best reviewer ...better than the paid reviewer Taran Adarsh and Over smart Rajeev masand!! Hats off!

My fav. moment: It was actually Arjun rampal (ra.one) who danced in Chammak challo song disguised as Kareena Kapoor.....hahahahaaha

Bobby Sing

Hi Robin,
Really loved reading your comments cause its not only about praises but its about some honest views received for an honest review written.
And responses like these only keep me going in high spirits.
Thanks a lot once again and I also loved you comment on the Chammak Challo Song. Have included it in my Facebook Statutes, so you can join me there too as we keep on discussing movies, music, poetry and life there.


Palki Singh

Disappointed but thinking of gng n watching d 3D version...hope it will be beta...JUST for Shahrukh....only coz i can stay in a theater for 3 hours only watching Shah Rukh n Jz Shah Rukh..hahahaha...Thou personally I have loved his daring products like Asoka...but there weak performance at d box office has unfortunately made him follow the leagues of stupid movies like Bodyguard..only n only to get a HIT...
It started from Chalte Chalte..which was also an Hit (dunno y) till now.

Bobby Sing

Thanks for your honest response as a true Shahrukh fan Palki.
But I am doubtful that any amount of Toppings like 3D can increase the Taste of an already overly cooked Pizza.
So, its all about the content in the end and nothing about any star in particular.

Dont you think We fans would all love to see our favourite stars in a well written, well made and well presented film which is less criticised and more praised by all unanimously.

That is what I am always looking for as a true movie-goer and reviewer.


Vinay Ved

Shahrukh Khan, as I expected and observed in yester years, has been King Khan by shear impositions. Having no other movie running in any multiplexes while Ra.One goes on reveals how insecure and dominating he is when it comes to his Films and Inner-Greed to stay as number one super star.

We have a new Mafia now, which forces us to either watch his stupidity or nothing else. The content is as silly and the response as huge as expected. The only Super Star of Indian Film industry who is without element and substance. Reminds me of great Urdu Idiom, Allah Meharban to.............Pehlwaan !

Vinay Ved

Bobby Sing
Hi Vinay,
Indeed Very Honestly put as the voice of a common movie-goer going to cinema to have some fun in the holidays......
And I have shared it too on my FACEBOOK Profile which has really resulted in a Great Thread with all good friends joining in.

A must read for all.

Hello Mr.Bobby singh, I am rajini fan.I accept your critics about ra.one.
But i will not accept your words about rajinikanth\'s performance.This is a good recognition for the south indian star is concerned.
Already rajini\'s robot movie ends with poor collection in bollywood. This cameo role for rajini in sharukh khan film will be atleast a compromise for bollywood fans of rajinikanth. So don\'t take it as a serious.
Finally,I don\'t think there are many youngsters who know about rajinikanth very well in North.
So, this cameo role will be a great comeback for rajini among your ardent young fans of bollywood.
What are you thinking about my view Mr.bobby singh.

Bobby Sing

Hello Ramji,
First of all thanks for accepting my viewpoint regarding RA.ONE.

But coming to your point about Rajni Sir Cameo, then I think you got me wrong there.
I am also a fan of The Famous Rajnikant Mania but what I wanted to convey in my review was that I didnt like the way they presented Rajni in that small cameo.

For him I was really expecting something great in those few seconds and I think the scene didnt justify the World Famous Image of the Suprestar and I really was wishing a lot more.

So its not about Rajnikanth performing but its about how he was presented before Hindi Audience by the director and producer....I was not satisfied with the way the lacking cameo was planned.

I hope now you will understand my point more in the right way.





Yes. Mr. bobby you are correct.
I think mohanlal and mammotty, kamalhasaan will not accept such a cheap cameo roles without doing any justice to the script for movie. Sharukh and rajini are great friends in real life.
But they themselves don\'t know how to transform it in the silver screen.

Bobby Sing

Yeah, I too have the same opinion about this cameo.
Thanks for understanding my point and do keep visiting and sharing your thoughts on good cinema.

There is lot more in the site in its various sections and I am sure you will love surfing it.


Devender Singh Grewal

I must go through your reviews before wasting time in cinema hall.

Bobby Sing

Thanks Devender but you should surely chek it here before spending on a bad movie.
So Keep Visiting for that then, Cheers!

Ayush Gupta

Hi Bobby,

First of all kudos to you for writing such a detailed review on a movie which had nothing in it except few (yes, only few) proper visual effects. I am a student of animation and special effects and I can see that special effects standards are above what you say are in India but still we have a long way to go as far as hollywood movies are concerned. In fact they are not even as impressive as Terminator : Judgement Day \'s which was released way back in early 90s.

Now coming to the plot, I dont have english words for it as I am not that great in foreign language but yaa i can say that its a BINA SIR PAIR KI MOVIE. How can these guys be so stupid ... somebody please tell Bollywood that if a you have a decent plot for the movie its ok nobody gives a damn about special effects.
If special effects play such an important role then why THE HURT LOCKER got the best movie OSCAR instead of AVATAR ???

And once again I would like to thank you for the lengthy but true to the core review...


Bobby Sing

Hi Ayush,
Thanks a lot for appreciating and also agreeing with my detailed review. As a true cinema lover I tried my best to justify each point mentioned in the review - for and against the movie.

And yes it was way short of all the Monsterous Expectations raised, quite sadly.

Do keep visiting for more as there is lots to share here coming soon.


Brilliant review Bobby, and absolutely spot on ! I had the opportunity to speak to many people about ra.one before and after its release, and what most of them told me after they saw the movie reflects your review to a great extent. Overall, I think because of the massive publicity stunts, the audience expected a lot more - atleast in the storyline. Animations and vfx were of good standards.

Thanks again for the review, I enjoyed reading it :)

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