Raees movie review: Shah Rukh-Nawazuddin will keep you hooked

Movie: Raees
Cast: Shah Rukh Khan, Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Mahira Khan, Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub, Atul Kulkarni, Narendra Jha, Sheeba Chadha, Sunny Leone
Director: Rahul Dholakia
Rating: 3.5

'Raees' brings back 80s era of golden-hearted dons! 

Shah Rukh Khan returns on screen as 'Raees'. A boy from humble background with big dreams. Powered by wit and insatiable ambition. “Baniye ka Dimaag aur Miyabhai ki daring”, a line that was introduced early on by the producers of film to promote the movie is not only used till the end but proved as well.

Raees’ journey from a small bootlegger to messiah
If you been missing an 80’s potboiler, then Raees is something that you must watch. The film may not have a strong plot or script, but it’s an out and out masala movie set in Gujarat, which is packed with action, romance, songs & dance, villains, colourful sets, item number, beautiful leading lady and a golden-hearted hero with shades of grey.

The film opens with a street-smart kid – Raees who works for liquor mafia and grows into a handsome youngster through the Muharram mourning ritual. The scene is featured on SRK’s good looks. Camera closely moving on chiselled torso will make women go weak in knees (whistle worthy moment). One thing that needs mention here is – Raees is touchy about being called ‘battery’ (a slang for people who wear spectacles).

Shah Rukh is seen playing a mafia, who smuggles liquor, is politically well-connected, people's man, shrewd to the core with a beautiful woman on his side- famous Pakistani actress Mahira Khan and an almost brother-like friend Sadiq (Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub). Raees is creative at getting illegal liquor shipments past police, but he isn’t the smartest smugglers around. He trusts the wrong people in the business and picks a fight on the drop of a hat.

He has an equally, in fact stronger rival – Majmudar (Nawazuddin Siddique) – a cop who doesn’t leave any chance to grab Raees (Shah Rukh Khan) by his neck. How he does it will keep you hooked till the end. 

​Rahul Dholakia who is known for his real-life based films knows Gujarat well. By the time the plot settles in, there’s not much time left.  Even certain action sequences look baseless.

Shah Rukh Khan’s Raees looks stunning as it brings back the era of 80s don – Abdul Latif (although makers have denied it). With kohled eyes, SRK aka Raees Khan looks unforgiving. His character has traces from his early career. Nawazuddin Siddiqui as  ACP Majmudar has the best role, he not only justifies his role but brings value to the film with his intense performance and dry humour. The animosity and brewing tension between the two is the best thing in the film.

Mahira Khan who is all upset with not been able to promote the film, looks pretty. Her character is over-shadowed by her fellow actors.  

Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub who plays the role of Shah Rukh Khan’s brother-cum-friend is too good. He’s effortless and looks promising. 

Sunny Leone’s much-hyped dance number – ‘Laila Main Laila’ looks a mix of 80’s and 2016’s item number. As usual, she shimmers as Laila and shakes her body throughout the song.

After Sholay, Raees is the film to release its original background sound track. ‘Laila Main Laila’ is a grooving mix, ‘Zaalima’ is a love anthem and ‘Udi Jaye’ is going to top charts at least till the dandiya season. There’s even a complete song based on Shah Rukh Khan’s character. 

'Raees' might leave you straight-faced, but the cheering by SRK’s fans will make your day.

Deepti Kaul
Deepti Kaul – Senior Writer

Deepti Kaul has over a decade’s experience in journalism. She has worked with media giants like Hindustan Times, NDTV, India Today, IndiaTV and as a freelancer. She loves to write on Indians abroad, fashion, lifestyle,food, travel, showbiz, education, parenting while meeting people and experiencing different cultures.