Ranarangam review: A gangster drama with slick visuals
Ranarangam lacks emotional quotient. The story and the scenes are cliched. Had the director focused on the content more, this could have been an engaging gangster drama.
Critic's Rating: 2.75/5
Friday 16 August 2019
Sharwanand, Kajal Aggarwal, Kalyani Priyadarshan
Deva (Sharwanand) who is living a secluded life with a teenage kid in Spain gets an offer from a Vizag businessmen to make the locals clear the villages for an airport project. Deva refuses the deal as the villagers see him as a protector. He is a mafia don operating from Spain. Why has he moved to Spain from Vizag? How did he become such a big don from a small time rowdy? What are the threats he is facing from the past and present adversaries? The story narrates the rise of Deva, the mafia don.
Director Sudheer Varma often quotes this dialogue from Fight Club: “Everything is so far away, a copy of a copy of a copy.” He unabashedly uses sequences from the movies that he loves and gives his twist. In Ranarangam, he has taken inspiration from Coppola’s classic The God Father 2. Like The God Father 2, it narrates two stories – the present day don’s problems and his back story. Both stories run parallel to each other.
Sudheer Varma has chosen the backdrop of Vizag of 1995 when the prohibition was imposed in Andhra Pradesh. This real-life incident has given him the right basis to tell the story of the rise of a don. As expected, the thread of 1995 is engaging enough and has the best scenes. The problem is it turns predictable in the other half.
Sudheer Varma always presents his movies in the most stylish manner be it Swamy Raa Raa or Keshava. Cinematographer Divakar Mani has come in hand for him to help him to present his ideas on the screen in even more slick and stylish way. Many of the action episodes in the film are brilliantly composed. The interval shoot-out and bomb blast sequence in the second half are a testament to the beauty of the visual composition and slick taking. With rich production values, Sudheer Varma has further invested in presenting it in a stylish manner. Then what is the problem? It is the writing.
The story and the scenes are clichéd. Also, the film lacks emotional quotient. Had he focused on the content more, this would have been an engaging gangster drama. A right opportunity is wasted.
Sharwanand is good in the role of Deva. He portrays the two shades of his character with ease. But I liked his cheerful body language of young Deva. Kalyani Priyadarshan is apt for this role and she shares good chemistry with Sharwanand. Kajal Aggarwal doesn’t have anything much to do. Among other roles, Ajay, Raja and Murali Sharma leave an impression.
Technically, the film is brilliant. Divakar Mani’s lighting pattern should be commended. His cinematography has made a lot of difference to this regular gangster drama. Editing is okay. The background score is perfect. Production values are top-class.
Sudheer Varma shines as a director but the movie fails due to bad writing.
Ranarangam is a gangster drama that has slick visuals, top-class production values, and some good action blocks but it disappoints on writing and lacks emotional appeal.