Raabta movie review: A tale of confused connections

Raabta movie review: A tale of confused connections

Raabta tires you with a confused reincarnation back-story.

By Deepa Gauri

Published: Fri 9 Jun 2017, 2:10 PM

Last updated: Fri 9 Jun 2017, 4:16 PM

As Deepika Padukone, in a cameo, sashays to the tune of the title song, clad in a gown with literally the unkindest cuts of all, she casts a look at Kriti Sanon. It is mixed with pity, empathy and sympathy.
She could very well have been thinking of her debut in Om Shanti Om, another reincarnation drama - the genre that Raabta attempts to reinvent in a shallow shroud of exotic locales and the faux 'modernity' in relationships that Bollywood peddles.
But Sushant Singh Rajput, while a fantastic actor, is no Shah Rukh Khan. And the goofy yet deft control that Farah Khan had on Om Shanti Om is sorely lacking in Raabta, Dinesh Vijan's directorial debut.
Reminding one more of the muddled Befikre, that tiresome movie starring Ranveer Singh, Raabta spends almost a good one hour in the mollycoddling of Sushant (as Shiva, a banker) and Kriti (as Saira). He gets the best lines, often sexist and chauvinistic, and all that Saira has to do is widen her eyes and try to appear cute.
On that count, both Sushant and Kriti deliver their part, and those who love the actors would very well fall for their charade too. After all, as some wise man said, when were a man and woman in love ever not ridiculous to watch?
The bad guys in this film then are the people who love Saira, and to whom she has no qualms in reciprocating her feelings. But we are talking 'connections' here - the sort that form once in a blue moon or a 1,000 years.
So the poor men who love Saira are bound to suffer, dumped with scant regard, be it in today's world or many years back, when she was a warrior princess and Shiva was the valiant warrior who overnight turns philosopher about soul connections after meeting her.
Unresolved mysteries of the past repeat (the theme of last week's Dobaara: See Your Evil) and appearing into this otherwise placidly flowing love story is Zakir Merchant (Jim Sarbh). If you thought Saira was the one who lost the plot (talking to mirrors and generally being naive), wait till you see Zakir and his maverick mannerisms. 
Apparently, he had been searching Saira for the past 25 years. They are lovers from the past and the only problem is the lead-lady's fickle-mindedness. She had unceremoniously dumped him for the dashing warrior and he wants to ensure that in this life he gets his love.
A tough villain is what makes heroes and films click. Here, despite being a great actor, Jim Sarbh is hardly menacing and often unintentionally hilarious.
With the three key players defined, the film takes a plunge into the past, arises with little clarity, and gets into a lame climax mode, where the only relief is Sushant attempting some humour as Kriti speaks deadpan about reincarnation and all that stuff.
A meandering tale that has nothing new to say and gets lost in its own confusions, Raabta might strike a chord with those who love mushy romances and cheesy lines. But if you are looking for anything of value, at least a reinterpretation of the much-touted reincarnation plot-point, you might return disappointed.
Director SS Rajamouli can rest easy. This is no Magadheera and not even a patch on it.
Starring: Sushant Singh Rajput, Kriti Sanon, Jim Sarbh
Directed by Dinesh Vijan
Now playing at theatres in the UAE
Rating: 2/5

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