While the whole of social media is swarmed in the Shamshera wave(which is largely negative), another Hindi film had a quiet theatrical release this weekend. That film is RK/RKay which is directed by Rajat Kapoor who I highly adorn as a filmmaker. His movies are always different from the mainstream and highly underrated. The subject in hand is relatable but just then he often introduces an abstract dose which adds a whole new dimension to the drama. In other words, his films are often intellectual and force you to interpret the story in the mould which you prefer. Hence despite the massive release Shamshera, I opted to watch RK/RKay which has been crowd funded. And so it is imperative for us at Popcorn Reviewss to give a voice to it(provided the film is good). With that I finished watching RK/RKay, is it worth your time, stay tuned.
Story & Screenplay
RK/RKay follows the story of a filmmaker who also doubles up as the main lead. This until he disappears from the reels of his own film. Everytime Bollywood has been accused of blatantly ripping off(officially ofcourse) films from the South in the name of adapatations. But when there are original stories which the filmmakers try to tell, it finds no takers. This is the sad reality, as the story here is absolutely brilliant and different from anything which you may have ever watched. There is a certain element of being abstract which the filmmaker in question has now mastered, which made me really appreciate the story. The screenplay standing at just over 90 minutes is the ideal length for an experimental film like this.
The drama opens on a film set which was attributed to the chaos and hussle that is synonymous on a film set. This immediately built a world which was beautiful and something that oozed off some positive vibes. The humour was sly but extremely well integrated in the drama. I found myself laughing and enjoying myself right from the first reel. This until the writers introduce the conflict almost nonchalantly.
The conflict of a character disappearing from an entire film opens up a box full of possibilities where I found my mind almost expanding its horizon in trying to figure out what exactly was going on. As they say, a writer adds some of his qualities to the character. This is extremely well explored in scenes to come. The protagonist almost suffering from a strained marriage finds his character mouthing his lines in the most whimsical fashion. The writing is delicious keeping the humour intact throughout while leaving scope for your intellectual juices to flow.
The proceedings are interesting and by far hilarious but also thought provoking. There are some easter eggs waiting to be discovered in the second hour where everyone tries convincing the character to re-enact the scenes. There are a couple of forced twists where you did find the story running too thin especially towards the end which was a little abrupt(maybe due to budget constraints), but taking nothing away from its journey which is simply outstanding.
Dialogues, Music & Direction
The dialogues are unassumingly witty and almost conversational at times but they did evoke a sense of laughter consistently. The music is decent as is the BGM. This might be a film made on a shoe-string budget but it just did not show in the technical department. The cinematography and art work are top notch(especially giving the “film characters” a different lighting)! Director Rajat Kapoor falls in the rare breed of filmmakers which need to be protected and often encouraged to provide them with voices. He has attempted something which is very different and that alone deserves an applause. But Rajat Kapoor is always known for his low budget-high quality films and this is no different. His direction is excellent and he does a tremendous job in handling an abstract subject with utmost skills.
The performances are excellent here. Namit Das, Aadar Malik and Tara Sharma have charming cameos in this drama. Saadhika Syal has her moments to shine, Chandrachoor Rai as Namit is natural to the core. Manurishi Chadha as Goel Sahab is absolutely hilarious and it is his effortless nature to approaching a comedy which stands out and needs to be studied. Ramvir Shorey as Ranvir(himself) and KN Singh is brilliant and does a fabulous job. Mallika Sherawat as Gulabo and Neha does a stupendous job and it was heartening for me that she is open to such experimental roles. Kubbra Sait as Seema is very well restrained and quite brilliant. Rajat Kapoor the actor as RK and Mehboob almost essays two separate roles and he manages to nail both of them. It was such a pleasure watching him onscreen in what was such a towering act!
RK/RKay is a whimsical immersive experience which might be niche but is also intellectual and abstract with high doses of humour. Available in a theatre near you and Highly Recommended!