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Rang Rasiya

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Critic Rating


24 Reviews
22 Ratings
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Audience Rating

1 Review
2 Ratings

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Rang Rasiya is an Indian drama film based on the life of the 19th-century Indian painter Raja Ravi Varma.Wikipedia

Rang Rasiya Reviews

Shubhra Gupta
Indian Express


It feels like a choppy costume drama marred by false notes and static ‘acting’...Varma deserves a deeper, more layered film.

Raja Sen


Rang Rasiya is not a consistent film, but one that tells a story of a pioneering artist and visionary, a story decidedly worth telling..

Rohit Vats
Hindustan Times


Rang Rasiya is much more than just a period film. It’s a statement on behalf of people who reject intolerance and are continuously striving for a new India which will give space to free voice. It’s a piece of art.

Suparna Sharma
Deccan Chronicle


The film’s high point is seeing Ravi Varma’s paintings. It establishes that the painter-artist's life is a powerful story that needs to be told by a better, more accomplished director and actors.

This film has been in the cans for several years, but given the timelessness of the story it tells and the crucial issues it addresses, it has lost none of its relevance. Rang Rasiya is as good a film as any you have, or will, see this year. Strongly recommended.

Srijana Mitra Das
Times Of India


Rang Rasiya is a colourful triumph, director Ketan Mehta meriting applause for his portrait of painter Raja Ravi Varma, skillfully blending a biopic, a period film, a love story and a social critique, within a tight frame.

Rohit Khilnani
India Today


Rang Rasiya is not a perfect film and not for everyone but for those who would like to know more about one of the best painters ever, this one will be worth your time.


Smeared in color, vibrancy and sensuality, Rang Rasiya revels in its operatic beauty and narrates a liberating tale of love, passion and freedom of vision. Ketan Mehta brings out the best from its actors Randeep and Nandana; especially the latter who unleashes on screen much beyond her sublime beauty, the vulnerability of her character. The inspirational story tells an uninhibited tale of a man who will always remain eternal through his art.

Reviewer Profile
India Today


It's these superfluous sex scenes and the appalling acting by the girls (except the delicate Feryna Wazheir playing Frenny) that just destroyed this otherwise interesting and smoothly told tale. By adding (because they really do seem lathered on top) these dispensable, obvious moments of lust, the film cheapens itself and stops feeling like an artistic A-grade take on the life of a world class artist that it should and could have been.

...for the artistic and creative people who believe in freedom of expression but it surely won't woo the janta who are looking for entertainment and a getaway this weekend.


For those in the creative field and who love works of art, watching RANG RASIYA should definitely be on your 'to-do list' this weekend.

Wish there was more subtlety of desire and less in-your-face lust and sex. However, Mehta deserves huge credit for tackling a subject of this kind — the sensitive issue of petty politics curbing freedom of art and expression has been dogging us for centuries and continues to do so.

Subhash K Jha


If you love art and cinema, and cinema as art, then don’t miss this one. The best film of the year.

Komal Nahta
Komal Nahta's Blog


Rang Rasiya is too class-appealing to make any impact at the box-office. Flop.

Irrespective of any fault Rang Rasiya is a piece of cinema you could watch. This one will stand as one of the most deserving biopics in an industry which is suddenly trying to make films on just about anyone. Rang Rasiya is on a league of its own, meaningful and relevant a century after the man has gone.

Daily Bhaskar
Daily Bhaskar


Watch it if you have a thing for history, to know how Dada Saheb Phalke played a prodigy to Raja Ravi Varma and of course for the aesthetically rich treatment of the plot.

Audience Reviews for Rang Rasiya

  • Bindu Cherungath
    Bindu Cherungath
    126 reviews
    Top Reviewer

    Rang Rasiya, a film by Ketan Mehta, is based on the novel Raja Ravi Varma by Ranjith Desai, a celebrated Marathi writer. It becomes very challenging for me to review such movies, where real stories are told, or some sort of biopic is made. This movie also may not be devoid of shortcomings, but such movies celebrate the life of someone, and one gets to focus only on the story. It took more than five years to see the release of this movie in India. In Kerala, the release is further postponed.Rang Rasiya is an art-centric biopic, drama based on the colourful life of Raja Ravi Varma (19th Century), one of the greatest Indian painter of all time. The story lets us know, how he re-discovered our ancient culture for us. The movie begins with the auction of Raja Ravi Varma’s painting and then the story moves further in flash back. Ravi Varma showed his artistic capability right from his childhood days. Later, when he grows up (Randeep Hooda), he gets married to a princess and moves to her palace (as part of marumakkathayam system). Being an eccentric painter, he was inspired by the beauty around, even a maid in the palace became his inspiration. He was not born in a Royale family but the ‘Raja’ status was conferred to him by Travancore king who was very pleased with his artworks. He gets to stay in the royal palace and enjoys the colours of life with the girls, but soon is thrown out of the palace on the death of the King by the successor to the throne.

    Raja Ravi Varma moves to Bombay and later on gets a big project from the Maharaja of Baroda Palace. He gets to travel all across the country and then he gets his idea of telling Ramayana, Mahabharata, rather the culture of India through his artwork. His muse was Sugandha (Nanadana Sen). Gods and Goddesses got face through his painting. He joined hands with the German printer Fritz Schleizer (Jim Boeven) and an Indian businessman Govardhan Das (Paresh Raval) to set up a lithographic printing press in Bombay to reproduce his paintings. His paintings took the icons of Hindu mythology out of the temples and royal palaces and made available to the so-called untouchables, common man. He was getting famous and respected by many people all across the country and on the other side he became the eye of the storm for many religious fundamentalists. Raja Ravi Varma had transformed by then into a highly talented and rebellious artist. He was dragged to the court for hurting the religious sentiments of people, trying to destroy the culture of our country. Story unfolds as part of court hearings.

    Rang Rasiya questions that why artists are not given creative freedom. Issues viz. religious prejudices, deeply ingrained caste and class divides are also covered.The movie also mentions about Raja Ravi Varma’s illustrious protégé, Dhundiraj Govind Phalke who later became the Father of Indian Cinema (Dada Saheb Phalke).The relationship between the artist and his muse is explored so beautifully and shot so aesthetically.

    November 21, 14