R… Rajkumar

R. Rajkumnar Starring Shahid Kapoor, Sonakshi Sinha and Sonu Sood, has been shot in a rustic backdrop. A rowdy Romeo falls in love with a village girl , but he has to fight the enemies of love – chachas, chamchaas and cronies – to take home his bride. The filmmaker tried to cash in on the latest trend of showing a street-smart ‘road side Romeo’, dressed in gaudy shirts who falls in love with a good girl.

Prabhu Deva tends to direct a film pretty much like he choreographs a song. He packs both, from end to end, with a frenzied flurry of brisk hand and feet movements and a surfeit of high-decibel musical clatter.

Rajkumar (Shahid) is a street smart orphan guy who comes to Dhartipur, a dreaded place ruled by two drug mafias. The purpose of his visit is however established towards the end of the film but it doesn’t convince you at all. He rips, he roars, he rages. He rides roughshod. Like a lovelorn ‘Rambo’, he rolls his ‘R’s. He’s the riotous R…Rajkumar (R for Romeo!). Once again, a rebellious and raving hero jumps out of Prabhu Deva’s story – loaded with gaon-full of goons, buffoons, ‘item’ chhoris, less ‘silence’ and unstoppable violence.

‘RR’ (Shahid) lands in Dhartipur, with his heart on his colourful sleeve, double power in his muscles and bravado in his bones. Flaunting his mawaligiri and ‘maar’daangi with equal gusto. One quick encounter with desi beauty Chanda (Sonakshi) and his dil is ‘attached’ to her for eternity. He woos her aggressively (lovingly calls her Lollipop!), even turns Action Jackson for her, ‘breaking a few legs’ and tons of bottles. She’s no less a razor-tongue firebrand and hard-to-get girl, albeit briefly.

The moment Rajkumar steps into Dhartipur, he sees the two warring gangs headed by Shivraj (Sonu Sood) and Parmar (Ashish Vidyarthi) indulge in a gun battle. Romeo Rajkumar has no coherent back story. He appears from nowhere and begins to mess with two rival opium growers in a village called Dhartipur. He joins the gang of one of the two baddies and becomes his lead henchman, Shivraj and falls in love Chanda and later realizes that she is the niece of the other goon , Parmar . Chanda is quite courageous girl who doesn’t fear roughing up men who tease her . Rajkumar tries to save her from fierce bullets.

Shivraj uses Rajkumar to befriend his rival gang so that he could carry out his drug deal without hassles. Parmar strikes a deal with Shivraj by offering the hand of his niece to him. And that is when a love triangle begins. More trouble ensues’ it turns into a ‘sarry affair’ (everyone seems to fight for a yard of Chanda’s sari!) and ‘RR’ has no choice but to become the new posterboy of the now stereotyped, violent, angry, young man. Some gandi baat, chummas, and ‘sari falling’ scenes later (nothing scandalous!) she melts, and their love story seems complete.

Shahid pulls off the tapori act well, dances fabulously, does kickass action and slips in good comic moments. His makeover as action hero can’t go unnoticed, but his demolition man act is unconvincing for action larger than his boyish shoulders. He scores better as Romeo than ruffian. Sonakshi has some dumdaar lines but repeats her desi doll act.

Sood’s dabang-giri works, But the audiences would certainly love to see Sonu Sood essaying a variety of characters and not just the typical rustic baddie that he has repeated with this movie. It felt good to see Ashish Vidyarthi back in Bollywood, but perhaps the choice of his comeback character could have been much better. Asrani (as Shivraj’s senile soothsayer) shoots funny one-liners, but his OTTism is sadly stuck in an 80s loop.

While ‘R…Rajkumar’ entertains at some levels, it suffers from utter plainness and predictability. The raw action is impressive (Ravi Varma), the songs (Pritam) and the choreography are routine attractions. The second half seems like a sari too long and the comedy is often forced.

It has some ‘Must Haves’ of a pot-boiler, but misses the real thing – a SOLID STORY!