The movie Ram Setu’s story is set in the year 2007. It is about a report submitted by the Archaeological Survey of India at the Supreme Court about its findings about the Ram Setu, aka Adam’s Bridge. Well, as per history, there was a scenario in 2007 where a report about the authenticity of the connection between Ram Setu and Ramayana was submitted. The Akshay Kumar movie, however, conveniently tweaks that incident to create a fantasy that wants its audience to believe that Ramayan and everything written in it is absolute truth and not at all fictional.
Dr. Aryan Kulshrestha, an archaelogist is our central protagonist. He is an atheist who says that he believes only in things that have scientific proof. An affidavit submitted by him on behalf of the ASI, stating that Ram Setu is not a manmade structure, causes major headaches for the central government. The humiliation he had to face post that forces Aryan to take up a private expedition for a shipping company to prove his claim scientifically. What happens in that journey is what you see in Ram Setu.
The antagonist of the movie, at one point, addresses the hurdle in front of him by saying, “this is the land of Rama” In another scene, they say that we Indians see cows as our mothers. The hero of the movie says, “if a metro project can be rerouted to protect Qutub Minar and factories can be shut to protect the Taj Mahal, why can’t that be done for Ram Setu?” The blatant right-wing ideology endorsement is evident in every second of Ram Setu, and Abhishek Sharma is not even trying to make the WhatsApp forwards look convincing on screen. Seeing the courtroom sequences in the film (it was the supreme court, by the way), I had to apply Prabhas’ logic about the Adipurush teaser (that it is made for kids) to digest it.
Abhishek Sharma thinks he is cracking the neutral ground by making the hero an atheist. But the strategy of making an atheist go to the court defending Ram Setu and thus claiming everything in Ramayan happened becomes very apparent at a really early stage of the film. On a script level, the movie struggles to go beyond the bullet points. After a point, Abhishek Sharma moves the story to Sri Lanka so that he can prove Raavan existed, and hence Ram was also not a myth. That Indiana Jones met Jumanji on a tight-budget episode that showed us the central characters exploring Sri Lanka for proof offers unintentional comedy.
A hidden way shown to them by a crocodile, an area that comes under shade which marks Raavan’s Lanka, the existence of Sanjeevani Booti in Lanka, etc., are the proofs that make the Supreme Court take a favorable judgment for those who wanted to protect the Ram Setu. The visual effects and production design look really tacky. It was almost like they were convinced that the movie’s politics and the number of times they used the word Sri Ram would make people forget its technical flaws.
Akshay Kumar’s hectic schedule doesn’t seem to allow him to work on the craft for each character he chooses to play. Barring that white beard and a wig, everything else in his performance looks pretty much the same. Jacqueline Fernandez plays the role of an environmentalist named Dr. Sandra, but her portrayal of the character would make you question her Ph.D. Satyadev appears in the film as a Lankan tourist guide AP and delivers a satisfactory performance. The sequence that revealed AP’s identity was a perfect mix of facepalm and cringe. Nushrratt Bharuccha,Nassar and Parvesh Rana are the other major names in the cast.
The story’s setting, the hate it is trying to cultivate, the way it is trying to instigate communal insecurity, the claps the hero gets at the end, etc., clearly show the political inclination of the movie. But the craft aspect is so tasteless, and the visual effects are so tacky that even the ones who believe in the story won’t feel like projecting this as proof for their claims.
The craft aspect is so tasteless, and the visual effects are so tacky that even the ones who believe in the story won't feel like projecting this as proof for their claims.
Green: Recommended Content
Orange: The In-Between Ones
Red: Not Recommended