Mumbai, 18 May 2019 7:00 IST
Updated: 23 May 2019 0:36 IST
The biggest plus point of the Ravi Jadhav film is the performances of Abhinay Berde, Kashmira Pardeshi and Priya Berde.
In Ravi Jadhav’s Rampaat, 21-year-old Mithun (Abhinay Berde) comes to Mumbai from Solapur to fulfil his and his mother's dream and become a film star. But as he is about to enter the city, his luggage gets stolen.
Mithun meets a young woman Vijaya aka Munni (Kashmira Pardeshi), who, like him, has come to Mumbai to become a star actress. Munni is from another city, Kolhapur. She has run away from home as her wrestler father hates cinema and only wants her to pursue wrestling.
Mithun and Vijaya go for their first audition together, and perform with passion. However, the audition turns out to be fake and the two of them get duped of whatever cash they had.
These incidents make you feel the film is serious, maybe even depressing. But Jadhav presents these events and their consequences as fantasy. So, when Mithun’s luggage is stolen, he soon forgets about it.
When the youngsters struggle to find a place to stay or eat, they meet a random tongawalla who gives them shelter for the night and food despite being a complete stranger.
When they get duped of their money, a photographer appears out of nowhere, decides to shoot their pictures, and gives them shelter at his residence. Once again, he, too, is a random stranger.
As film fans generally know, the lives of strugglers from other towns and cities who come to Mumbai and lose their belongings can become hell without food or shelter. But you still accept such liberties taken by the script as the film gives you a sense of being a massy entertainer.
But problems emerge when Rampaat actually tries to become serious. The narrative focuses a lot on the struggles faced by the newcomers. Of course, the film is realistic in that it locates their struggle in the part of Andheri, Mumbai, where big Hindi film studios like Yash Raj Films and Balaji Telefilms are located, and the Pu La Deshpande Academy where actual auditions happen.
But thereafter, story development takes a back seat. There is nothing new in seeing struggling actors giving their heart and soul to get that one break and the problems they face in the process.
As if this were not enough, we are reminded regularly of a couple of popular Hindi films. One is Farah Khan’s Om Shaanti Om (2007). In fact, the characters of Mithun and his mother (played by Abhinay's real-life mum Priya Berde) are very much like those of Shah Rukh Khan and Kirron Kher in Om Shaanti Om. Like SRK, Abhinay loses his father early in life and wants to become a film star. His mother always speaks in a melodramatic manner, much like Kher did in the 2007 movie.
Rampaat also has elements of Dangal (2016). When you have a wrestler father (Abhijeet Chavan) who forces his daughter to become a wrestler because he couldn’t be a successful wrestler, how can you not be reminded of Aamir Khan-starrer?
Apart from the lack of novelty, the real problem is that Rampaat is not entertaining enough. There is an overdose of mimicry of Hindi film stars, which is amusing only up to a point. Also, Mithun and Munni’s story does not have a proper conclusion. It hints at a sequel, a scary thought.
In a film whose main characters are keen to become film stars, you would have expected the music to play a big role. But except for 'Aaichaan Ra', none of the tracks are enjoyable. 'Rampaat Rap' appears to be too inspired from the Gully Boy (2019) anthem 'Apna Time Aayega'.
Thankfully, the performances of the main cast are just too good. They are the film's biggest plus. After Ti Sadhya Kay Karte (2017) and Ashi Hi Aashiqui (2019), Abhinay Berde proves his mettle yet again as a leading man. He is what is popularly known as 'hero material', but with acting talent to match.
Kashmira Pardeshi, who has worked in films in the South, makes her Marathi big-screen debut. She is a brilliant find. Pardeshi displays different emotions with ease and has the right amount of confidence.
Priya Berde’s tuning with real-life son Abhinay is something to watch out for. Kushal Badrike's act is also a positive contribution.
Filmmaker Ravi Jadhav is known for choosing different subjects every time for his films. In films like Natarang (2009), Balak Palak (2012) and Timepass (2014), he provided us entertainment with a message. His previous film Nude (2018), though it ran into trouble with the film certification board, was a wonderfully crafted and narrated artistic ode to nude models. So, it was no surprise that Rampaat aroused a lot of expectation in Marathi cine lovers. Sadly, the film is neither strong on content nor on entertainment.
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