Raees cast: Shah Rukh Khan, Mahira Khan, Nawazuddin Siddique and Mohammad Zeeshan Ayyub
Director: Rahul Dholakia
Producer: Shah Rukh Khan, Farhan Akhtar and Ritesh Sidhwani
Raees is anything but a movie with an unpredictable plot. It is set in the 80’s in Gujarat, India and takes you back to Shah Rukh Khan’s anti-hero days but this time around as a kind-hearted criminal. The movie marks Mahira Khan’s Bollywood debut. So keeping spoilers to a minimum, let’s begin.
It’s a story of a guy named ‘Raees’, who since his childhood dreams to set his own empire and works for it as he does everything illegal to gain power. He has a best friend cum assistant who supports him the whole time. Aasiya(Mahira Khan) is Raees’ love interest and later wife and doesn’t has much to do with his business. Majumdar(Nawazuddin Siddique), the fierce cop is on hunt to finish crime and punish Raees, their chor-police relationship is extremely engrossing. So, the clever bootlegger ‘Raees’, faces trouble as a brave cop starts chasing him.
Raees is a typical adrenaline-filled, action packed Bollywood masala movie, but there were many times when the movie felt a bit drawn out but amazing performances carried it towards the end. The movie had a predictable story line but the first half was pretty much engaging and our hero was all set on his journey to rule the liquor business. The second half was all about Raees helping others. The story then fell flat, was stretched and the reason was the lack of depth in the script which pretty much sums it all. Shah Rukh Khan’s performance was applaudable as he knew exactly what to do and carried the movie well, with his realistic acting. Nawazudin Sidiqui here, deserves a special mention because he actually shined with his commendable acting in small bits here and there.
How do you not root for Mahira Khan in her Bollywood debut? Aasiya, the wife of Raees unfortunately, did not had a lot of screen time. Mahira’s scenes were restricted to some emotional moments and songs, but she did made her presence felt. She stunned as Aasiya but at one hand she seemed confident and on the other hand her dialogue delivery seemed cringe worthy. Raees wouldn’t conclude as Mahira’s best performance till date but she managed to pull off her part pretty well. She might have shown more of her persona magic if provided with some good screen time. And well as expected, she shared a crackling chemistry with SRK which will make you fall for them.
Raees overall is a blend of romance, crime and politics but is an average movie. It is a kind of tale which is the same old beaten to bits one. The direction and dialogues were quite average with an ordinary script and an expected music with only two praise worthy songs. However, production elements were good and be it cinematography or background score, it was all satisfactory.
There were some other good parts too since the action was exhilarating and SRK carried those over sized spectacles pretty impressively too. All the actors have done a good job but the movie doesn’t has much beyond that. Raees is certainly a one time watch and a must watch for all the SRK and Mahira fans out there.
Blunder(Spoilers alert): The timeline of the movie was a bit unclear as there was a leap of one year right after Aasiyah’s pregnancy news. Surprisingly, there was no baby around even after a year and Aasiya and Raees were acting normal but suddenly during ‘O Zalima’, Raees is shown naming their baby(no clue to how the baby suddenly arrived and that too after a year or so). He further throws parties for having a baby boy which left me wondering to what exactly went wrong, as the editing there was a total mishap.