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Ranga Movie Review: Sibi Sathyaraj, Nikhila Vimal shine in a middling survival thriller- Cinema express

Ranga Movie Review: Sibi Sathyaraj, Nikhila Vimal shine in a middling survival thriller

The lack of focus and a few too many missteps pull down this well-performed survival thriller from the heights that it had the potential to reach

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Published: 13th May 2022

Imagine the possibilities one can have with a protagonist who suffers from alien hand syndrome (AHS). We recently saw Peechangkai treat the syndrome as a comedy. This time around, in Ranga, with a bigger star like Sibi Sathyaraj, director DL Vinod weaves a survival thriller that begins as a comedy before settling as a faithful genre film.  

We first meet Adithya (Sibi Sathyaraj), whose AHS is now an accepted thing among his friends, colleagues, and family. It is impressive how the filmmaker doesn't waste too much time in developing the love story between Adithya and Abirami (Nikhila Vimal). Over the duration of a song, we reach the point where Adithya and Abhirami are ready for marriage. It is during this wedding that we see feeble attempts at comedy using Adithya's movement disorder. Ranga meanders a bit too long before getting to the central conflict, which essentially revolves around organised crime.  

Cast: Sibi Sathyaraj, Nikhila Vimal, Sathish, Manobala

Director: Vinod DL

To give credit where it's due, Ranga does have a lot of interesting plot points. We have a random throwback to the sixth century where the story of a warrior named Ranga is equated to present-day Adithya. We have a plot point centered on hidden camera pornography. We have the potential that a disorder like AHS offers for writers. But somewhere down the line, the makers fail to develop them into a coherent and consistent film. 

What really works for the film is Sibi Sathyaraj's earnestness when he portrays being affected by the disorder. A hapless Nikhila effectively expresses her exasperation about having to constantly be on the run away from a danger she doesn't fully know. Apart from these performances, the acting of the supporting cast is slightly all over the place. Another drawback of the film is Sathish and Manobala's contrived attempts at comedy. The former especially makes an untoward MeToo reference that should have either never been said or at the very least edited out of the film when it was awaiting a release for the past couple of years. 

Although the makers of Ranga have adopted an interesting quirk in the film, they fail to use it properly as there are stretches in the film where we are asked to conveniently forget that Adithya has AHS. Another drawback of Ranga is the inappropriate placement of both the songs and the background score. While the songs do have a hummable quality to them, the background score tries too hard to wring out an emotion from the audience.  

While the CGI portions of the film were largely amateurish, the stunt choreography and the way it is picturised is a value addition to Ranga, which desperately needed more such focus. 

I do have to hand it to the Ranga team for having their heart in the right place, but the lack of focus and a few too many missteps pull down this survival thriller from the heights that it had the potential to reach.

Rating:
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