"SMS Generation - chaar line se zyaada koi bhi conversation, lecture lagne lagti hai". One of the many lines from Rang De Basanti which linger on, days after the movie. More than a diatribe on the lackadaisical approach of this very SMS generation, RDB comes across strongly as a piece of meaningful, target-oriented and impactful Hindi cinema. Eye caressing cinematography by Binod Pradhan, in one of his few non-Vidhu Chopra flicks - I particularly liked the bike sequence-lighting techniques and the aerial shots and of course, the sepia tinged flashback sequences.
Ok, coming to the movie - highly awaited Aamir "Pheonix" Khan flick - but that's the difference here. Its not a whole and soul Aamir Khan movie. No doubt, Aamir pulls off another living role, comfortably fitting into the jeans of a Delhi collegekid - the scene where he breaks down, sheer brilliance. When Aamir's on screen, especially in a Hindi movie, it really feels like that one soloist singing his heart out, deeply involved in the music, in a group of cacophonics. RDB's different with several performances coming out gangbusters - Soha Ali Khan, Kunal Kapoor, Atul Kulkarni, Sharman Joshi, Kirron Kher and the new kid, Siddharth.
Brilliant premise. Handling of the switch-element between pre-partition and today - mindblowing. RDB has dozens of USPs. Where does it fall short? Length - second half was unnecessarily stretched. And most importantly - believability. Yes, India is corrupt - but a group of college kids killing the Defence Minister, and then locking themselves up in the AIR building, only to be subsequently shot dead, doesn't seem to be a likely solution, nor a possible occurence. RDB had all the makings of a gripping, soul-touching classic - if only, the "Awakening of a Generation" could have been made a little more believable.
But it was great to see a MEANINGFUL movie. key stress on that word, because of the string of Neels and Nikkis that we have been subjected to, the past few months. Also, the combination of intricate and top notch dialogues, music, cinematography and performances. With a few touch-ups necessary in the screenplay and story department (the same that Rakeysh Mehra's previous movie, Aks needed as well), RDB meets, matches and, in many aspects, supercedes expectations, with a soundtrack and dialogues that remain in your zehen for a while. Sarfaroshi ki tamanna ........!