Director: Anurag Kashyap
Writer: Vasan Bala, Anurag Kashyap
Stars: Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Vicky Kaushal, Sobhita Dhulipala, Mukesh Chhabra
Runtime: 127 min
Genre: Crime, Drama, Thriller
Released: 24 Jun 2016
Synopsis: Set in present day Mumbai the story follows the life of a serial killer Ramanna who is inspired by an infamous serial killer from the 1960s Raman Raghav. His strange obsession with Raghavan, a young Cop keeps growing as he closely follows him without his knowledge and often creates situations where both of them come face to face.
Set in present day Mumbai the story follows the life of a serial killer Ramanna who is inspired by an infamous serial killer from the 1960s, Raman Raghav. His strange obsession with Raghavan, a young cop keeps growing as he closely follows him without his knowledge and often creates situations where both of them come face to face.
Review: An opening rider in Raman Raghav 2.0 establishes the film’s connect (as well as the disconnect) with the infamous serial killer of the 60s Mumbai: Raman Raghav, who had left a trail of 41 odd murders behind him. “This film is not about him,” the disclaimer states. Indeed the film is about a contemporary copycat killer. But then it is not just about the new age Ramanna either.
Whodunnit? Whydunnit? Howdunnit? Raman Raghav 2.0 is actually neither of the above. Yes there are many murders that keep you riveted but they are not an end in themselves. They are more a contrivance, as is the cat and mouse game between the killer Ramanna (Nawazuddin Siddiqui) and the cop Raghuvendra Singh Ubbi (Vicky Kaushal). The slayings and slaughters are mere pitstops in the journey of these two characters and their unfolding relationship with each other. The killings (right from the one at the start till those in the end) are devices through which Anurag Kashyap explores the crime vs law binary. He brings the two together, coalesces and fuses them. Is there much that separates the two? Aren’t they reflections of each other? The film is a long chase in which each is actually running after his own shadow. It is as if Kashyap deliberately splits an immoral, unlawful mind into two and the film then becomes a voyage to a metaphoric completion. As if on cue Ramanna says of Raghav: “Apni mukti aurat mein dhoondh raha hai (He is looking for his own redemption in a woman).” Implying quite kinkily that it is he who is actually his salvation.
More than the story itself, it is the quirky telling that is the key. Structured around eight chapters, vividly shot in the slums, pulsating with raucous music, Raman Raghav 2.0 is a taut thriller, full of energy and brimming over with tension. It doesn’t flag even once and holds the viewer tightly in its grip. Such is the dizzying momentum and pace that you even stop caring about some missing pieces of the jigsaw that would have been niggling you. Clear-cut, uncomplicated Raman Raghav 2.0 takes you on an entertainment high.