Mumbai, 10 May 2018 18:41 IST
Revealing a shocking incident right at the start is a smart idea. But once the rest of the story unfolds, you quickly lose interest.
Director Rakesh Sarang weaves two vastly different genres of family drama and mystery thriller to churn his multi-starrer, Ranangan. At best, the film can be called a family thriller. Whatever you call it, doesn't change the silliness of the plot. It also reeks of regressiveness in the climax.
Ranangan is based in present day Pune. Shamrao Deshmukh (Sachin Pilgaonkar) is a wealthy businessman-cum-politician. He lives with his wife (Suchitra Bandekar), son Varad (Siddharth Chandekar), Shlok (Swwapnil Joshi), an orphan whom he has raised like his own son and his brother-in-law (Anand Ingle). Shamrao’s aim is to win the Rajya Sabha seat, come what may.
Varad is a divorcee and his second marriage is also cancelled due to a shocking incident. Shamrao then fixes Varad’s marriage with his family friend’s daughter Sanika (Pranali Ghogare), with full knowledge of her pregnancy by a previous lover who abandons her. He doesn’t want Sanika to abort the child. After the two get married, Shlok becomes a bother for Shamrao as he seems to know some deep dark secrets of Shamrao's past.
The story revealed till the interval is quite interesting. Revealing a shocking incident right at the start is a smart idea. The mystery element generates at least some intrigue and gets you interested in what happens next.
But once the rest of the story unfolds, you quickly lose interest. The main aim of the protagonist not only lacks logic, but is also unintentionally hilarious and quite regressive. The audience is enlightened on how easy it is to fall in love with random women and impregnate them. It is also child’s play to kill one if the need arises; mild strangulation would work just fine. In one scene, a man also says that one of the female characters is just a ‘device’ to raise kids. The film has more twists that are hilarious.
The character of Shlok is neither well established nor well presented. He is someone who considers Pilgaonkar's character Shamrao a demigod, but goes against him after he gets to know about his past. However, the audience is only shown Shlok's anger. The writers strangely found it unnecessary to show even a glimpse of Shlok's admiration for Shamrao. Hence, an important dimension of the character is just not explored, which severely affects the character’s journey.
If this wasn’t enough, the narrative is loud and melodramatic and, more importantly, riddled with flaws. For example, Sanika either panics or gets teary-eyed every time Shlok comes close to her, but nobody finds this fishy.
The ambitious camerawork does not sit well with the theme. The background score either has an overdose of the signature tune of Shlok's character or loud music. From the songs, ‘Naad Karaycha Naay’ is an enjoyable dance number with Santosh Juvekar and Vaibhav Tatwawaadi’s energetic dance moves. But the placement of the song is faulty.
The performances aren’t bad, but the writing affects them all. Sachin Pilgaonkar is believable as the hot-headed, patriarchal businessmen-cum-politician. There is nothing more to his act though. Swwapnil Joshi shows the right attitude needed for his mysterious character. But his character lacks depth and layers.
Siddharth Chandekar was impressive in the recently successful, Gulabjaam (2018). He is average here simply because he doesn’t get much of an opportunity. Pranali Ghogare has acting talent, but her role is limited to either panicking or being sad. Suchitra Bandekar and Anand Ingle are passable. Mukta Barve and Prarthana Behere are wasted in cameos.
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