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RaOne2011
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Rating: 4.5/5 (3 votes cast)

Ra.One (2011)

RaOne2011

Ra.One 2011), sometimes written as RA One or RA.One, is a 2011 Hindi science fiction superhero film written and directed by Anubhav Sinha. The film features Shahrukh Khan in dual roles, and also stars Kareena Kapoor, Armaan Verma and Arjun Rampal in the lead. Shahana Goswami, Dalip Tahil and Chinese-American actor Tom Wu appear in supporting roles, along with Rajinikanth, Sanjay Dutt and Priyanka Chopra making cameo appearances. The film follows Shekhar (Khan), a game designer living and based in London along with his wife (Kapoor) and son (Verma), who designs a motion-sensor based game in which the villain is far more powerful than the hero. In the process, the villain escapes from the video game and begins to track down the only person ever to defeat him, Lucifer (Verma). Ra.One was jointly produced by Eros International and Khan’s production company, Red Chillies Entertainment. Initially expected to hit theatres on June 3, 2011, the release of the film was pushed back to the Diwali weekend of October 26, 2011 due to extensive post-production work involving special effects and 3D conversion.

Development of the project commenced in 2004 when Sinha wrote a three-page short story based on a commercial he had seen. Upon finalizing the story, pre-production work began after the release of Khan’s Om Shanti Om in 2007, with principal photography commencing in March 2009. In July 2011, it was announced that the entire film would be converted into 3D. The visual effects of the film were carried out by Red Chillies VFX, under the supervision of Hollywood effects technician Jeffrey Kleiser. With an estimated budget of 125 crore (US$23.75 million), Ra.One is the second-most expensive film ever produced in Indian cinema, following Enthiran (2010). In addition, an estimated 52 crore (US$9.88 million) was spent on marketing through various partnerships, which set the record for the largest marketing budget in India. Red Chillies Entertainment spent up to 10 crore (US$1.9 million) while their partners likeMcDonald’s covered the remaining costs in order to be associated with the Ra.One brand. The film faced multiple problems prior to its release, including censorship, soundtrack “leaks” and copyrights, the latter of which cost the producers 1 crore (US$190,000). The film witnessed a level of publicity campaigning previously unseen in India films, with marketing taking place over a period of nine months and involving major brand tie-ups, merchandise, theme-based video games and extensive viral marketing. The film also faced uncertainty regarding the preparedness of the film for release, with several rumours and media stories that the film would not be completed on time.

Ra.One had premieres in Dubai, London and Toronto during the period of October 24–26. The film released across 3,100 screens in India and 904 prints overseas in both 2D and 3D, and was also dubbed in Tamil and Telugu, making it the largest Indian cinematic release in the world. Upon release, while the Indian critics gave mixed reviews, the overseas film critics received it warmly. The film has been widely praised for its visual effects and action, though criticism has been generated regarding its script and direction. Subsequently, the success of the effects and the 3D version of the film prompted multiple other Bollywood filmmakers to consider technology as a part of film-making, especially in view of the success of Ra.One and the inordinately higher returns generated from 3D ticket sales. The film went on to break multiple box-office records, including highest Diwali day collections, highest single-day collections, highest three-day collections. Within a week of its theatrical run, Box Office India declared the film a hit in India, and a week later, a super hit overseas. However, the film’s box office performance was termed “average” by trade pundits (analysts). According to its distributors, Ra.One is the second highest-grossing Bollywood film worldwide. It earned 240 crore (US$45.6 million) from all its versions.

Plot

Jenny Nayar (Goswami), an employee of UK based Barron Industries, introduces a new technology in which objects from the digital world can be brought into the real world, using the wireless transmissions from multiple wireless devices. Shekhar Subramanium (Khan), an employee of the company, faces his last chance to come up with a video game with a difference. In order to impress his son Prateek (Verma), and upon the request of his wife Sonia (Kapoor), he takes his son’s idea that the antagonist should be more powerful than the protagonist.
Akashi (Wu) provides the moves, Jenny does the programming and Shekhar gives his face to the protagonist G.One, whilst the antagonist Ra.One is faceless with powers substantially higher than those granted to G.One. The game has three levels, and either of the players can only be killed in the third level with a special gun that has only one bullet. While designing the game, Akashi notices some malfunctions, but ignores them. When the game is finally launched, it receives a standing ovation and Prateek loves it so much that he insists on playing it instantly. He logs in under the alias ‘Lucifer’ and goes to the second level, but is interrupted by Akashi as it is time to go home. Ra.One, being unable to end his turn with Lucifer, says that Lucifer shall die.

After the mainframe doesn’t shut down, Akashi calls Shekhar who notices something wrong. Ra.One uses the initially introduced technology to come to life, kills Akashi, and goes to find Lucifer. Shekhar rushes home but is blocked by Ra.One on the way. In an attempt to save his son, Shekhar claims that he is Lucifer. However, Ra.One scans his I.D., and kills him for faking it. Upon noticing the strange case of his father’s death, Prateek realizes that Ra.One has come to life. Along with Jenny, he goes to Shekhar’s workspace and tries to bring G.One to life. Sonia arrives and asks Prateek to leave with her for India. Ra.One, having taken the form of Akashi, chases them, but G.One enters the real world through Jenny’s computer and saves them by initiating a gas explosion which destroys Ra.One into constituent cubes levelled along the road, and takes his H.A.R.T. Finding it impossible to leave him, Sonia takes G.One to India with her through Shekhar’s passport. G.One promises her that he will protect them from any harm. Meanwhile, Ra.One returns to life and takes his humanized form of a model on a billboard (Rampal) and goes after G.One.

During Prateek’s birthday party, Ra.One hypnotizes Sonia, assumes her form and kidnaps Prateek. He instructs G.One to give him his H.A.R.T. back and sends the real Sonia in an uncontrollable local train in Mumbai. G.One saves Sonia just at the nick of the time, and then goes back to save Prateek. The game resumes with Prateek controlling G.One’s moves. Following a lengthy fight, both of the characters finally reach the third level. With little powers left, the pair trick Ra.One into shooting G.One without his H.A.R.T. attached to him. Furious, Ra.One creates ten alternatives. Prateek, unable to differentiate the real one, asks G.One to quote one of Shekhar’s sayings stored in his folder: “If you join the forces of evil, its shadows shall always follow you”. The pair then realize that only one of the ten Ra.Ones has a shadow. G.One shoots him and transports himself back to the digital world after absorbing Ra.One’s remains. Several months later, Prateek and Sonia return back to the UK, where the former finally manages to restore G.One back to the real world.

Cast

Shahrukh Khan as Shekhar Subramaniam and G.One
Kareena Kapoor as Sonia Subramaniam
Arjun Rampal as Ra.One
Armaan Verma as Prateek Subramaniam (Lucifer)
Shahana Goswami as Jenny Nayar
Tom Wu as Akashi and Ra.One
Dalip Tahil as Barron
Suresh Menon as Taxi Driver
Satish Shah as Iyer
Rajinikanth as Chitti (Guest appearance)
Sanjay Dutt as Khalnayak (Guest appearance)
Priyanka Chopra as The Desi Girl (Guest appearance)
Amitabh Bachchan as Voice-over of game

Sound Tracks

“Chammak Challo”
Written by Vishal Dadlani, Niranjan Iyengar
Composed by Vishal Dadlani, Shekhar Ravjiani
Performed by Akon, Hamsika Iyer
Music Label T-Series

“Dildaara (Stand By Me)”
Written by Kumaar
Composed by Vishal Dadlani, Shekhar Ravjiani
Performed by Shafqat Amanat Ali, Vishal Dadlani, Shekhar Ravjiani, Clinton Cerejo
Music Label T-Series

“Criminal”
Written by Kumaar, Vishal Dadlani
Composed by Vishal Dadlani, Shekhar Ravjiani
Performed by Akon, Vishal Dadlani, Shruti Pathak
Music Label T-Series

“Bhare Naina”
Written by Panchhi Jalonvi
Composed by Vishal Dadlani, Shekhar Ravjiani
Performed by Vishal Dadlani, Shekhar Ravjiani, Nandini Shrikar
Music Label Music Label T-Series

“Right By Your Side”
Written by Anvita Dutt Guptan
Composed by Vishal Dadlani, Shekhar Ravjiani
Performed by Siddharth Coutto
Music Label T-Series

“Raftaarein”
Written by Vishal Dadlani
Composed by Vishal Dadlani, Shekhar Ravjiani
Performed by Vishal Dadlani, Shekhar Ravjiani
Music Label T-Series

“Jiya Mora Ghabraaye (The Chase)”
Written by Anubhav Sinha, Vishal Dadlani
Composed by Vishal Dadlani, Shekhar Ravjiani
Performed by Sukhwinder Singh, Vishal Dadlani
Music Label T-Series

“Chammak Challo (Punjabi Mix)”
Written by Vishal Dadlani, Niranjan Iyengar
Composed by Vishal Dadlani, Shekhar Ravjiani
Performed by Akon, Hamsika Iyer
Music Label T-Series

“Comes The Light (Theme) (Instrumental)”
Composed by Vishal Dadlani, Shekhar Ravjiani
Music Label T-Series

“I’m On (Theme) (Instrumental)”
Composed by Vishal Dadlani, Shekhar Ravjiani
Music Label T-Series

“Song Of The End (Theme) (Instrumental)”
Composed by Vishal Dadlani, Shekhar Ravjiani
Music Label T-Series

“Chammak Challo (Club Mix)”
Written by Vishal Dadlani, Niranjan Iyengar
Composed by Vishal Dadlani, Shekhar Ravjiani
Performed by Akon, Hamsika Iyer
Music Label T-Series

“Criminal (Remix)”
Written by Kumaar, Vishal Dadlani
Composed by Vishal Dadlani, Shekhar Ravjiani
Performed by Akon, Vishal Dadlani, Shruti Pathak
Music Label T-Series

“Chammak Challo (International)”
Written by Vishal Dadlani
Composed by Vishal Dadlani, Shekhar Ravjiani
Performed by Akon
Music Label T-Series

“Chammak Challo (Remix)”
Written by Vishal Dadlani, Niranjan Iyengar
Composed by Vishal Dadlani, Shekhar Ravjiani
Performed by Akon, Hamsika Iyer
Music Label T-Series

Reviewed by ChathuRangA on 27 February 2012

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