'Radhe Shyam' movie review: Stellar Prabhas headlines impressive romantic drama

Prabhas' lover boy act is a treat for the class audience in this sincerely-executed romantic saga
Last Updated : 11 March 2022, 10:55 IST

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Director: Radha Krishna Kumar

Cast: Prabhas, Pooja Hegde, Jagapathi Babu and Sathyaraj

Language: Hindi

Rating: 3.5/5

Pan-India star Prabhas' latest movie Radhe Shyam is an ambitious romantic drama that hits the right notes due to the Baahubali hero's stellar performance and director Radha Krishna Kumar's grand vision. It, however, caters exclusively to a class audience. The biggie revolves around a legendary palmist, played by 'Darling, who has the ability to accurately predict the future. He indulges in plain and simple 'flirtationship' as he is not 'destined' to fall in love. His world is turned upside down when he meets and falls for Pooja Hegde's Prerna, a doctor with a tragic secret. The rest of the narrative focuses on the ultimate 'war between love and destiny'.

Also Read | 'Radhe Shyam' box office preview: Will Prabhas score a 'Baahubalian' blockbuster with his new movie?

Prabhas woos his 'Juliet' in style

The premise is quite compelling as it pretty much as everything--right from memorable dialogues to an emotional climax-- that one expects from a romantic drama. It luckily reaches its potential due to the slightly flawed yet effective execution.

A romantic drama can strike a chord with the audience only if the lead pair's chemistry packs a punch. Take the Tamil film 96 for instance. The Vijay Sethupathi-starrer emerged as a blockbuster despite the fact that its basic plot, which revolved around two college sweethearts, wasn't something extraordinary as one could really relate to the sweet and simple reel dynamics between Ram and Jaanu. This is exactly where Radhe Shyam excels. Prabhas and Pooja's romantic sequences, which feature references to '97 kisses' and 'dying for love' are a treat for the audience. A scene set in a bus, in particular, takes one's breath away and that too quite literally, proving to be a treat for those fond of old school romance.

Effective interval block

The interval block has always been an integral part of commercial cinema. In an ideal scenario, this scene needs to pique curiosity and set the stage for what is to follow. The one seen in Radhe Shyam does just that as it highlights the vulnerable sides of both characters. Prabhas' monologue about destiny and god's will being mightier than medical science makes the desired impact as his rich deep voice exudes passion, something that he didn't bring to the table in certain scenes in Saaho.

Weakish second half, good climax

Radhe Shyam falters a bit after the intermission as certain portions of the second half drag and feels stretched, slowing down the film. As result, the whole track involving an attempt to change destiny does fall flat. Similarly, Sathyaraj's character doesn't really add much to the narrative, which is disappointing as 'Katappa' was the surprise package of the Baahubali franchise.

Radhe Shyam, however, regains its mojo once the action shifts to the ship that was previously, rather prominently, in the trailer. While these sequences aren't perfect and may even feel a bit OTT, the intention of their scale alone makes this a much grander effort than Darling and Mr Perfect.

Prabhas at his best

Coming to the performances, Prabhas--who received flak for his work in Saaho--silences his detractors with Radhe Shyam. The Mirchi hero is perceived to be a shy and fun-loving person in real life. And, the makers of the UV Creations-backed biggie play up this image quite well in the first half. His dreamy expressions in some of the romantic scenes are a treat for his 'Darlings'.

Prabhas is ably supported by Pooja, who plays one charming 'Juliet' with full sincerity. She adds depth to emotional scenes, bringing out the trauma experienced by her character. She makes a stronger impact here than Tamannaah and Disha Patani did in Baahubali and Radhe, respectively.

Sachin Khedekar plays the role of a caring father figure with the type of effortlessness he brought to the table in Antim. Veterans such as Murli Sharma and Jagapathi Babu are, unfortunately, burdened with insignificant roles that don't do justice to their abilities. The same applies to tthe likes of Bhagyashree and Kunaal Roy Kapur.

Meaningful dialogues, hummable songs

Commercial films often feature dialogues that compel fans to get into 'seetimaar' mode but don't really add much to the narrative. The 'die-hard fans' line from Sarah is a case in point. Radhe Shyam is an exception as each line, especially the 'Romeo' reference, adds depth to the narrative.

Songs such as Jaan Hai Meri and Aashiqui Aa Gayi have tremendous situational appeal, which makes the reel love story all the more alluring. The other technical aspects are up to the mark.

Published 11 March 2022, 10:24 IST

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