Goliyon Ki Raasleela – Ram Leela (2013) : Bollywood Movie Review

By the Gorgeous Palah Chingu

My Rating: 3.8/5
My Rating: 3.8/5

I knew that Ram Leela was sanjay leela bhansali’s next film in 2012. Although the lead cast is not finalized at that time, seeing ranveer singh and Kareena Kapoor listed as the main one put this film automatically on my radar. I am not so fond of Kareena but maybe after seeing she on screen with ranveer in the future will make me love her. Don’t misunderstood me, I don’t hate kareena, I thinks she’s fine as an actress but I don’t really go crazy over her. However, after a few rumors about Kareena will not going to do this film, the truth about it get out eventually. I watched a few interviews that said kareena thought the love scene is too intense and lustful and she scared of Ranveer Singh’s playfulness and beyond control on the set. I am sure we all can see that (especially those who watched koffee with Karan). Ranveer’s hyper activeness may lead some uncomfortable feeling with her co-star. Who can blame Kareena right? She maybe just doesn’t want any childishness drama.

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Romeo and Juliet theme in Bollywood film scene is uncommon. The love bird in the film usually will live happily ever after many scenes of chasing and fighting with the unapproved heroin’s father and brother or after the hero covered in blood and pretty much will be dead in next second suddenly gained massive strength because of her girl screamed for help. That is bollywood for you. If you happen to watch any Indian films with not so happy ending, that film maybe will be categorized under unconventional films in India. However, I am not here to blather about commercial films and unconventional films in Bollywood. Everyone had their own preferences in film and movie and that is why we had freedom of choice in the first place.

Deepika Padukone as 'Leela'
Deepika Padukone as ‘Leela’

Deepika as Leela is not disappointing (actually ‘not disappointing’ will be an understatement). I knew she can act brilliantly since I watched cocktail (2012). She was amazing in cocktail (2012) and in this film, dude, the way she brought Leela character is flawless. I like how deepika embodied the character of Leela as flirtatious and playful girl and at the same time, brave and dare to play with fire too. It is just perfect fit for Deepika. I can vividly remember how she does not seem hesitate to kiss Ram at all though it was their first meeting. That was one of my favorite scenes in this film. The intensified desire and lust is just exploding all over their face. Ram ached for leela and so does leela. The fact that there are barrier between them as both came from Rajari and Sanera family who had been a mortal enemy with each other for so many years does not even bothered them to engage in secret relationship. Maybe forbidden fruit is sweetest suits their situation best. The excitement and thrill of having to conceal secret passion with each other makes them inseparable.

Ranveer Singh as Ram
Ranveer Singh as Ram

Ranveer singh as Ram not brought so much impact to me as deepika did though I did watch this film initially because of him. Deepika did overshine ranveer in so many ways. Maybe the fact that when people in the film talked about how much ram and ranveer resembled each other turned me off a little bit. If they are so similar, then what ranveer did in the film is not acting but just being him. For me, Ranveer’s best performance is in the Lootera (2012). Being a looter and in the same time accidentally fell in love with the daughter of the man he looted is definitely a different role for Ranveer. He’s not being childlike in the film, he’s matured but in the same time was tormented inside, he wanted to stop being a professional thief but he’s indebted to his uncle which he assumed as his savior. Lootera showed that ranveer can play with so many emotions and it came across in the film. I think he did a very good job in that film (Lootera). Ram’s character maybe just as the additional spices in the film. Without Ram, the forbidden love will not appear in the first place. There are some moments when Ranveer did a good job as Ram but that’s it, nothing else.

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However, their chemistry is the thing people talked most before, during and after watching this film. No doubt, hands down to both of them, they could burn the cinema screen with their fiery and sizzling acting. If this film is added with a little hollwood-ish, the passionate lovemaking scene would appear twice and more. Sanjay Leela Bhansali decided not to do any bed scene in this film and of course, ruby and I disappointed. I mean, if you watch this film, you kind of wanted that particular scene to happen. It should been there because what else lust and love is for? (Please spare me your bullshit of love is more than sex, I don’t need to hear any of it). Unfortunately, it didn’t happen. They got separated forcedly before their first night together and within that time, Sanera and Rajari’s family fight elongated with so many crisis and restless power struggle. When they finally reconciled, both of them had taken over family business and obligated to make it prosper and thrive even they had to hurt each other. The loveless reconciliation over Ram and Leela in that scene is my top favorite scene in the film. Their soul tied to each other but their feet are chained with the name and honor of family.

Supriya Pathak as Dhankor Baa
Supriya Pathak as Dhankor Baa

I don’t know if you guys realized this but this film is dominated with many good actresses. They all did their part brilliantly. Beside Deepika in the film, Deepika’s Mom and sister in law are equally among the added factor of how good this film is. Supriya Pathak as Dhankor Baa should be lauded with applause. I know some would say that evil character is easy to play. Well, playing a role as a high ranking and respected leader that led family clan business to thrive and even survived in the male dominated society demanded someone who can do it right. Supriya Pathak nailed the role and her presence in the film is something you can’t push away. Being ‘Baa’ and looked up by others as a clan leader, people terrified of her and her order remains their highest concern. She loved Leela but just not the same way typical mother would love her daughter. She punished Leela for her sin and even cut her finger off when Leela defied her order.

Richa Chadda as Rasila
Richa Chadda as Rasila

Richa Chadda may not have big role in this film but if you ever watched Gangs of Wasseypur (1 & 2), her acting talent is just way above the par. She may not be a typical pretty as bollywood commercial film heroin had but acting wise, she’s the one. Being Rasila in this film is not so lucky obviously. She’s also got caught between petty fight between Rajari and Sanera. She ended up being a widow when Ram killed her husband as retaliation of his brother being shot at the scene. However, she wanted Ram and Leela to have a happy ending and urged them to run away and never came back. Little did she know that they will get caught and it cause the family fight to become bigger. She also almost got raped and being molested by Ram’s friend while tried to find Ram to reconnect him back with Leela. Rasila is not a typical girl who came back crying after the incident. She tried to convince Leela that Ram and his friends is just same and not worth anything good. Considering she almost got raped, she’s got the point for saying so. Still, Rasila being a selfless sister for Leela, taking good care of her and persuade Leela to replace Baa and try to continue their family legacy.

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This film overall was pretty good. It is strictly for entertainment movie with a sole theme ‘that we would die in each other arm’. The ending also turned out to be the biggest disappointment (after no bed scene found) in this film as ruby said, it is so similar with Ishaqzaade (2011). We all know that they both be dead at the end of the film, we just wanted a different kind of ending. Deepika Padukone is truly a jewel in this film. She carried the whole movie with the help of Supriya Pathak and Richa Chadda. Ranveer singh, after all, is just the eye candy in this film. I like him but his role in this film is just sort of there and he failed to make a new rendition of Ram like Leela did. The soundtrack on the other hands is fantastic. I listened to the whole album before the film is being released. Of course, the song of Nagada Sang Dhol, Ang Laga de and Lahu Munh Lag Gaya would be my first choice. The whole album is enjoyable to listen with a little bit of mystical and cultural sound. Ram Chahe Leela might not hit well with you when you listened to it first, but it grew on you after a few times repeating it. All the songs fit well with the film scene and fuck yeah, I am satisfied with it.

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Movies that I Repeatedly Watch

By The Gorgeous Palah Chingu

I wanted to do this list for a long time and I am kind of waiting for the right moment to do it.  The list of movies I repeatedly watch and still touched my heart deeply and makes me laughed and cried (even I watched it for so many times).

12. Mere Brother Ki Dulhan (2011)

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My Rating: 3.5/5

I usually will not repeat any of romantic comedy films because I find them too generic. There are so many recycled scenes in that kind of films until today and somehow, they will end up with happy ending. To say Mere Brother Ki Dulhan is different would be a terrible lie. This film offered a similar message of love in much happy description and a bit unrealistic. However, I can watch it for so many times because of Ali Zafar’s priceless expression in this film. It is so comical that I always laugh when those particular scenes appeared.

11. Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani (2012)

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My Rating: 3.5/5

After the bad breakup between Deepika Padukone and Ranbir Kapoor, I am not sure whether they are going to work opposite of each other in any film. There are some actresses who dated co-star but does not want to do anything with them right after the relationship went wrong. When Karan Johar decided to produce this film, I was like ‘what?’ how the hell are they going to do a film together after so much controversial especially in Koffee with Karan episodes involves in bashing Ranbir, the deepika’s tattoo news and so many gossips heated between them. Maybe they are going to ignore all of that, let bygones be bygones and stick to being professional. After watching this film, I was awestruck by it. In fact, the chemistry between them still strong in this film is amazing. Maybe the plot is a little bit cliché and a classic Karan Johar kind of film, but still, hands down to Deepika and Ranbir.

10. Salaam E Ishq ( 2007)

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My Rating: 3.8/5

The compilation of love story in the movie is brilliant. From the problem of different religion, middle age crisis, commitment phobic and career over love, all of this has been put together into this film very well by Nikhil Advani. Upon reading the critical reception of this film, I was puzzled. Why nobody like this film? Yeah there is some praise on this film but it still not good enough for this film. I considered this film is a modern interpretation of love story with realistic and sensible of issue that comes along with it. It composed of 6 stories from 6 couples that faced challenge in their love life and how they overcome it.

9. Tere Bin Laden (2010)

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My Rating: 3.8/5

Tere Bin Laden offered a good laugh over the sensitive issue of Bin Laden towards America. The story might be too simple to capture the whole complication of War on Terror and Post effect 9/11 but the jokes in this film is awesome. Ali Zafar as Ali Hassan and his team created chaos and commotion over piece of Osama News that they get hold on from secret source. Little did they know that the foolish action created by them had cause a trigger from America. America then deployed their secret agent to track Osama at Karachi, Pakistan. This is purely entertainment movie with comical satire of war on terror by America.

8. Mangal Pandey: The Rising (2005)

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My Rating: 4/5

To be honest with you guys, I really like Mangal Pandey story. I know that the story line not resembled 100 percent as what was written in history but it was a good try. Some of the scholar said that the rifle issue is so much larger than what is depicted in the film. If the director did not simplify the scene of rifle issue, we may have to watch this film in much longer duration. ‘Mangal Pandey’ who is Indian Sepoy that worked for British East India Company is the main character in this film. He befriended with Captain Gordon as Gordon indebted to him for saving his life in Anglo-Afghan Wars. Their friendship strengthened when Mangal Pandey help Gordon saved Jwala, a young widow who almost performed Sati. Sati is the act of following the dead husband into his death (the wife will be burned together with the deceased husband). When issue of the enfield musket rifle cause the angers among sepoys who are Muslim and Hindu respectively as the process of making it involves things that they are forbidden to consume. When Gordon gives false assurance that the rifle is fine and no such things occurred, Mangal Pandey really put his trust in him and guaranteed his fellow sepoy to do so. However, Mangal Panday felt betrayed by Gordon as the rumor of Enfield musket rifle turned out to be true. This incident led to the event of The Indian Rebellion of 1857.

7. Raajneeti (2010)

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My Rating: 4/5

I really like Arjun Rampal and Ranbir Kapoor character in this film. Katrina kaif in this film might be a bonus (to me especially as her fan) but the intensity of chemistry between Arjun and Ranbir renders me speechless. They (Arjun & Ranbir) combined their forces to avenge their father’s death and to win the election by staging many political tactics towards their opponent. The plot of the story is filled with hatred, vengeance, betrayal and willpower. This is by far, one of the best films that Prakash Jha ever directed. The presence of Ajay Devgan and Manoj Bajpayee as anti-hero characters is so freaking amazing. Enough said, the whole casts of the film including Nana Patekar should be applauded for giving me a very dramatic political thriller film (and trust me, it’s a good one too). You will not be disappointed by it. Besides, I actually like Arjun Rampal and Katrina Kaif paired together (because they are both tall, hot and suits well with each other).

6. OMG Oh My God (2012)

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My Rating: 4/5

For Paresh Rawal and Akshay Kumar to do this kind of film, they are no doubt fearless and have a gut. This movie is provoking (not in a bad way, mind you) but in a way where you should do the thinking. It touched the issue of “GOD” as most people would never try to talk about it as it is sensitive and should not be touched at all. Although it had similar story with ‘the man who sued god’ (2001) but what Umesh Shukla (the director) brings out in this film is the issue of commercialization of religion and the exploitation of money in religion institution. You can sense the strong message that he tried to convey in this film. The additional casts of this film like Om Puri and Mithun ChakraBorty added the flavors in this film. To have IMDB rated this film 8.1/10 and 76% given by the rotten tomatoes website, this film is a must watch film.

5. Vicky Donor (2012)

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My Rating: 4/5

Sperm donation still considered taboo subject in India and some of Asian countries. Ayushman Khurrana marking his debut in such a memorable film as nobody has ever made this kind of film in Bollywood scene before. To touch this sensitive matter, the director said he’s done his research for almost 3 years before completing the film. Although this film is loosely based on one of French film, it has been packed with common bollywood theme such as family and love. Why is it on my list of film I often repeated? I like how Vicky (Ayushman Khurrana) still loves his wife (Ashima) despite of her infertility and unable to produce child. Although he’s indirectly has fathered so many children because of his past as sperm donor and the fact that his wife is barren, he’s not giving her up. When Vicky’s family found out about the sperm donation, he was shunned by his mother for doing so and brought shame upon family. His grandmother on the other hand felt it was noble as Vicky brought joy to parents who incapable to have a child on their own. This film is admirable for its theme and successfully balancing both sad and happy emotion in it.

4. English Vinglish (2012)

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My Rating: 4.25/5

Sri Devi making a comeback via this film is a genius decision. This film is unconventional and had an exceptional plot on its own. The director, Gauri Shinde managed to take us into the real-life experience by her own mother in this film. The main character of this film,Shashi (portrayed by Sri Devi) always find herself being mocked and belittled by her husband and her kids for her inability to speak English. When she had to go to America by herself to help her sister for her niece’s wedding, she was scared. Alone and can’t speak English, she begged her husband to go together so she won’t feel alone but her husband refused to do so. She encounters some unpleasant situation like can’t really enjoy the conversation with her sister’s family and failed to order fast at Coffee Shop due to language barrier. She then decided to take a short course of English language at some language centre to learn Basic English in 4 weeks. Is it possible? Yes, if you have strong determination and work really hard for it. Bollywood rarely made a film that associated on theme of heroine oriented but this one has that element. It may not contain the fighting or bloodbath scenes or masala theme but it is refreshing in its story line and Sri Devi performance for this film is mind blowing.

3. Stanley Ka Dabba (2011)

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My Rating: 4.25/5

This film took me 1 week to get over the effect post watching it. The story is simple but it touched my heart to the core. After watching Taare Zameen Paar, I was browsing the web looking for other movies like Taare Zameen Paar. I stumbled upon the list on IMDB and Stanley Ka Dabba is listed as number one on that list. Knowing that the film got the same director as Taare Zameen Paar, I downloaded it ASAP. You can feel the pure love from the friendship of Stanley and his friends. Stanley got no money at all to buy his lunch and often didn’t bring anything to eat at all during rest hour at school. Sensing Stanley’s problem, his friends often invited him to eat together with them without any hesitation. The conflict arises when one of the teachers in Stanley’s school loves to eat and snoop on student’s lunch box or ‘dabba’ (as in the title).  He knows that Stanley’s friends always invited Stanley over to eat their food and this angers him as he would have no chance at all to taste their food. The lunchbox hunting begins between the teacher and them (Stanley and his friends). Later, the teacher told Stanley to stop coming at school until he can bring his own lunchbox. The issue is not as big as you can see; it is not about corruption or scandal but the lunchbox. However, there are so many heartwarming scenes in this film especially where it concerned of a group of students try to help their hungry friend, when Stanley does not want his friends know about his plight and he lied to them and when he stopped coming to school because he know he can’t afford the lunch box and doesn’t want to burden his friends. I can’t count how many times I cried but man, it really impacted me in some way.

2. 3 Idiots (2009)

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My Rating: 4.5/5

What is more touching than the story of unbreakable friendship, the tireless efforts of chasing the dreams and the bittersweet experiences in college and life? 3 idiots offers all in its film and for those who never watch this film, you should watch it. Whenever I feel down and alone, this is my comfort movie. I will watch it, cry at certain scenes in the film and my spirit will be renewed once the film is over. Aamir Khan as we all know one of the most versatile actors in Bollywood, he can be hero, villain, rebellious lover, fighter, depressed man and we’ve seen he played different roles in the film. Playing a character as a college boy at the age of nearly 40 is unreasonable unless you have that boyish look and it sure is a bonus for Aamir to have that kind of look. Aamir Khan charmed us with his acting and effortlessly plays the role of Chote/ Phunsukh Wangdu/Rachoddas. R. Madhavan and Sharman Joshi both complementing each other in the films as they portrayed as a Ranchoddas’s Friends with opposite behavior and mentality. One with different ambition but stuck in engineering college due to family pressure and for the other one who is truly passionate about engineering but fear of failing and letting down of his family get the best of him. This film is truly entertaining, inspiring and worth watching.

1. Barfi (2012)

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My Rating: 4.5/5

If a person asks me ‘what kind of love do you desire in your life?’ ‘What is your ideal love?’ ‘In your opinion, what constitutes true love?’ And so on about love, honestly speaking I have no idea. I did involve with so called ‘love’ or ‘relationship’ a few years back then, which I think I am not so matured and those moments are past that I wanted to erase. Was it love? Nahhhh..I would call it curiosity or palah’s experimental stage. I still don’t know what love is and I am sure that my obsession towards freaking hot guys is not love. It is what we called momentary lust and somehow, it will go someday. However, to pick a movie that resembles most of my ideal love story, Barfi would fit my description. If you wanted to say Romeo & Juliet or Titanic, go ahead, I’d still say and choose Barfi over those two. The idea of completing each other is so fascinating in the movie. The whole story convinced me that true love does not have to be perfect and our significant others could perfect our imperfection. I lost my counts on how many times I’ve watched this film and still cried at the ending. It’s not about good looking boy and beautiful girl fell in love with each other, it’s tells the story of beautiful relationship of deaf and mute boy with autistic girl. Yeah, there are few of copycat scenes from Charlie Chaplin films but the director did a great job in recreating those scenes. The way Ranbir and Priyanka portrayed Barfi and Jhilmil are so real and somehow led us believe that they are made for each other.

Forever Barfi & Jhilmil!!

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