Friday, November 11, 2011

Phil goes Bollywood: Phil sees RA.ONE at the BIG Cinemas Towne 3-November 9, 2011

So after driving by the BIG Cinemas Towne 3 (an Indian theater that was once owned by the Camera Cinemas before they sold it) for about the millionth time, I told myself that I really need to see a movie there soon. Then yesterday when I drove by it, I saw a movie poster that caught my eye. I pulled over to see what film it was for. As it turned out, it was for the new Bollywood, sci-fi action film RA.ONE and so, I went to see it the following night. All in all, I couldn't have asked for a better introduction to the amazing world of Bollywood!!

Theatrical Movie Poster (2011)
The films stars Shah Rukh Khan as Shekhar Subramaniam, a video gamer developer at Barron Industries who is loving married to his wife Sonia (the absolutely breathtaking Kareena Kapoor) and has a son Prateek (Satish Shah). While in the process of developing the ultimate superhero for his project, Shekhar faces harsh criticism from his son, saying that he would rather see the ultimate super villain instead. Wanting to part of his son's world, he takes he's advise and creates the indestructible villain called RA.One (pronounced as in Lankashwar Raven and portrayed by Arjun Rampal) and his arch foe, the heroic G.One (Jeevan and modeled after Shekhar's likeness). However, on the eve of the game's release, RA.One discovers a way to enter the real world and plans on destroying anything that comes in his path.

So as my first real Bollywood film ever, I have to say that I really enjoyed the film. It was first very entertaining. It had a good script with fun and eclectic characters, fantastic action scenes, and like other Bollywood films, three great song and dance numbers. The first musical dance sequence "Criminal" was fun and sets up the rest of the songs later on in the film. This at first shocked and surprised me. I'm not use to seeing an action fight scene fitted into a musical dance number, but this is common in these films. And so I fell in love with it! It was just that damn awesome! All the songs were catchy and it will make you dance in your seat!

Another fascinating aspect I noticed in the film was the influence of Western culture there in India. Brand name designer clothes, skateboards and American slang and behavior, as well as the music. While it contains traditional Indian music, it is also infused with hip hop and techno dance music; creating a very interesting and very creative style of music that I really enjoyed!

Shah Rukh Khan does a great job as both the nerdy, cowardly, goofball dad Shekhar and the heroic G.One. Khan is a very popular movie star in India, and has made several films. For me, seeing Kareena Kapoor up on the big screen was a revelation to me. Here is a talented actress who can sing, dance, act, and look beautiful while in the middle of a fight scene! And yes, I am in love with her!

RA.ONE is an cinematic experience that I will always cherish with me forever! A great film for fans of sci-fi, Bollywood, and it's fun the whole family. It is also a great introduction for those who have seen a Bollywood film before. I am so glad that I decided to see this film. Now a whole new world has been opened up for me, and I look forward to seeing more films at the BIG Cinemas.

RA.ONE is playing at select theaters here in the South Bay. It is currently playing at the AMC Theaters Mercardo 20 Santa Clara and AMC Cupertino Square 16 as well as at the BIG Cinemas Fremont 7. Click the links for showtimes near you!

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

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