'Made in China' review: Rajkummar Rao excels in this performance-oriented film
The movie as such is an ode to dreamers who have their hearts in the right place.
What does a Gujarati businessman, with 13 failed ventures to his name, do when forced to travel to China? He comes back with a top class business idea, of course!
Lead star Rajkummar Rao is undoubtedly the USP of National Award winning director Mikhil Musale's first Bollywood project, Made in China. As a middle-aged entrepreneur who has attempted everything from selling emu eggs to 5 star hotels, to flogging a chappati maker while running a loss making Nepali carpet business, Raghu Bhai tugs at your heartstrings, only because Rao plays it with complete earnestness.
He's a simple man who has a propensity to dream up the most outlandish business ideas, with the sole aim to make his wife Rukmini happy. Mouni Roy plays the loving, supportive wife whom Raghu Bhai is totally besotted with. There is a scene where Raghu asks Rukmini if she's truly happy with him, since he can't understand how someone as pretty as her could be content with an average looker like him. To be quite honest, Roy looks more like a sultry item girl with her pouty lips and her navel baring saris, to the extent even we wonder what she's doing as his wife!
Paresh Rawal plays Tanmay Bhai, a business guru, whom Raghu runs into in China, who ends up teaching him some key business lessons like: If you package Chawanprash well, you can sell it for the price of gold or True Business is all about selling solutions, not problems. Gajraj Rao, as motivational speaker Abhay Mehta, also stands out. Boman Irani as the 70-year-old 'rockstar' sexologist Dr Vardhi who partners with Raghu Bhai to sell his performance enhancing 'Magic Soup' is in his elements, though his portrayal is similar to characters he has played earlier.
Made in China, in a gist, is the story of a struggling middle-aged Gujarati businessman, and his journey to becoming a successful entrepreneur. Along with him it is also the story of countless wannabe entrepreneurs, who dream up get-rich schemes only to fail when it comes to execution. The movie as such is an ode to dreamers who have their heart in the right place, whether they make a success of their ventures or not.
While its title may be 'Made in China', the movie definitely has its heart set in India with most of the action taking place in Gujarat. It might remind you of films like Khandaani Shafakhana, which handled similar themes regarding being more open about issues of sex in a conservative place like India where such topics are considered vulgar. But it's a movie worth a watch for those who enjoy quirky tales, with a social message pushed in as well. Plus of course Rajkummar Rao is an actor who doesn't disappoint on the big screen and as a Gujju businessman, he is spot on.
Movie: Made in China
Director: Mikhil Musale
Cast: Rajkummar Rao, Mouni Roy, Paresh Rawal, Boman Irani, Gajraj Rao, Sumeet Vyas.
Rating: 3 out of 5