Director: Radha Krishna Kumar
Cast: Prabhas, Pooja Hegde
In one of the first few scenes, we see a character based on Indira Gandhi showing her hand to palmist Vikramaditya (Prabhas) as he predicts that she will declare a state of emergency in the near future. There is another scene where we see a photo of singer-songwriter John Lennon taking the signature of Prabhas as he is a world famous palmist who is often compared to the French astrologer Nostradamus.
Radhe Shyam, a romantic drama starring Pooja Hegde as the heroine, is so ambitious in its scope that it almost fools you into believing it is a great movie. Sadly it doesn’t even come close to being great and is just a yawn feast. The film ends up being one of those big budget attempts that is highly ambitious and foolish at the same time. While Prabhas tries to keep it together in whatever way, the film is mostly disappointing if not for its grandeur and some great visuals.
Director Radha Krishna Kumar along with the makers made sure the trailers made it look like the movie is a romcom, with some tragedy. It only takes 15 minutes in the movie for that bubble to burst. The slogan reads: Witness the greatest war between love and fate. I was seriously looking to witness something in its nearly two and a half hour run.
Set in 1976, the story is about palmist Vikramaditya who believes that astrology is a science that is 100% correct. On the other hand, his guru Paramahamsa (Sathyaraj) has a theory that astrology can predict up to 99 percent, not 100 percent. The other one percent of the people write their destiny and make history, says Paramahamsa, with which Vikramaditya differs.
Also, he doesn’t have a love line and that’s why he doesn’t believe in relationships. He only believes in ‘flirtship’. But he meets Prerana (Pooja Hegde) and falls for her instantly. She is a doctor who works in a general hospital in Rome and suffers from a life-threatening illness. When Vikramaditya sees her palm, he predicts that she will live 100 years. But he decides to leave her and go far away from her. The rest of the story takes you through the journey of these two lovers and how fate and karma come into play.
The film lacks two essences. First, there is no visible chemistry between Prabhas and Pooja. Their journey of infatuation is often cut short quite abruptly to add some comedic scenes that do not evoke any kind of laughter. Second, the love story is not palpable enough. It’s no wonder, then, that the intricate mess, which lasts more than two hours, doesn’t touch your heart. There are a lot of pointless scenes and characters that make no sense.
Speaking of the positives, the film is beautiful and widely shot in some amazing locations in Europe. The ship’s climactic sequence is really well executed for which the VFX team is sure to get a round of applause. But despite all this, the film completely sinks like the ship.
I wish director Radha Krishna Kumar had shown his hand to a palmist before making the film who would probably have foretold the future of the film and advised the producers not to invest Rs 300 crore in making this bore. For now, the film’s future is grim.
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