Anurag Kashyap has always been outspoken and bold about his film themes. While this one here, a psychological thriller, is exactly his kind of a film, the end result does not have the intended effect.
Raman (Siddiqui) is a jobless psychopath who makes killing random people a habit after first committing murder solely for revenge purposes. Raghav (Kaushal) is a victim of drug addiction and a cop who investigates Raghav's deeds. It's basically a cat-and-mouse chase game with the only difference being that the mouse has some weird ideas in his head and high fashion for surrendering itself. The film chiefly conveys how a possible intervention can cause someone to balance the wrongs that a he/she commits by balancing it with more wrongs, also simultaneously learning that the rest of the world is doing more or less the same ugly things.
The story starts well, letting us know that the plot is only inspired by the infamous serial killings of the 60s and that Raman and Raghav are different people contrary to popular belief. I had to edit Wikipedia about this. Kashyap and Bala have written a good layout, subtly suggesting a type of thought process tat goes behind motive-less homicides. But, the problem lies in the screenplay, which is a tad boring for people expecting gore and incessant flow of blood. Yes, blood definitely flows in this 2-hour long crime drama, but the fashion is mostly hit, then hit again, then blood, and then end.
The score is good but it is hardly used to propel the uninspiring story ahead. Siddiqui and Kaushal are both talented, but to be honest, I'm kind of done with the former's typecast roles. It was like watching amalgamated sequences of Badlapur (2015), Kahaani (2014), and Haraamkhor (2015). Kaushal was much better in Masaan (2015). The climax is half-baked, forcing the film to find a place in the never-ending list of films with ambiguous endings.
BOTTOM LINE: Anurag Kashyap's Raman Raghav 2.0 is a dull and bloated story of a psychopath trying to receive reciprocation of love and understanding from a drug addict who may have similar traits as him. Wait for DVD, and then rent it.
Can be watched with a typical Indian family? NO
Raman Raghav 2.0 is a thriller by Anurag Kashyap. This film is based on the notorious psychopath serial killer Raman Raghav. It was during mid-1960s that a series of murders happened in the suburbs of Mumbai. The murders were committed using a hard, blunt object. The murderer Raman Raghav was caught by Police, who confessed about his crime of 41 murders. He was sentenced to death penalty, though later the death sentence was forgiven and he was sentenced to life imprisonment. Anurag Kashyap has not tried to make a biopic on Raman Raghav. His character is shaped on Raman Raghav. It is a dark film. Anurag Kashyap has indeed made dark films in the past and with this latest one, it even gets darker. I can’t find entertainment elements in such films, but that is my personal opinion.
The film begins with the scene of Raghav (Vicky Kaushal) snorting drug and dancing in a club. Raghav is a cop. Ramanna (Nawazuddin Siddiqui) surrenders himself before the cops, confessing about committing 9 murders. Raghav and his colleagues just allow Ramanna to go free since they find him mentally unstable and feel that Ramanna is lying. Slowly when the investigations of the murders move further, Raghav realizes his mistake of setting Ramanna free.
Ramanna is very much inspired from the serial killer of mid 1960s Raman Raghav. He kills people in the same style as that of Raman Raghav. Wheel changing wrench and Iron rod are the weapons of Ramanna to kill the victims. Ramanna feels that without Raghav, he is incomplete.
Anurag Kashyap has tried to convey that Raman and Raghav are two sides of the same coin. Even the poster conveys the same message. If Ramanna is a hardcore criminal, can rape and kill his own sister, Raghav is also not less. Raghav is projected as a drug addict. Raghav’s misogynistic attitude is difficult to tolerate, but then, that is how Raghav’s character has been shaped up: a drug addict, non-empathetic, mistreats his girl friend Simmy (Sobhita Dhulipala), and even kills people. The difference is that Ramanna does not have license to kill, whereas Raghav has the license to kill as a cop.
The film is about various killings and the cat and mouse race between Ramanna and Raghav. Is Ramanna able to find his soulmate Raghav? How does Raghav’s character shape up in the film? Who wins in the end – Raghav or Ramanna or neither of them? Background score adds to the dark tone of the film.
Both the major characters Ramanna and Raghav are very well played by Nawazuddin and Vicky Kaushal respectively. We have seen this Nawazuddin earlier too, but definitely, he has played even darker character this time. For Vicky, this is absolutely a u-turn character when compared to his roles in Masaan and Zubaan. Both of them have given great performances as Ramanna and Raghav, projected the grey shades so convincingly.
But what was the motive of Anurag Kashyap behind making this film? He did try to convey that anyone can kill anytime. He made the law-breaker as well as law-maker look all the same. The characters as such are not developed properly. Why and how did Ramanna become a serial killer, a psychopath? How did Vicky’s character Raghav become a drug addict? Why Raghav’s relationship with his father is so strained? Why does Raghav end up ill-treating or sexually abusing his girl friend ? What used to be the motive of Ramanna behind his murders? These questions definitely go unanswered.
Raman Raghav 2.0, a dark film by Anurag Kashyap, is based on 1960’s psychopath serial killer Raman Raghav. Watch it for two reasons: One, in case, you like dark films and second, for performances of Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Vicky Kaushal.
sach main I liked it very much