Raja Natwarlal: Humaima, ‘Pakistan’s Rani’, fails to rule the Indian Box Office
Yes, Emraan Hashmi is back in his ‘serial kisser avatar’ in Kunal Deshmukh’s Raja Natwarlal. This time Emraan is blessed with both: his serial kissing traits and his power packed spontaneous performance. The movie created a lot of buzz pre and post release, as it casts Pakistani ‘drama queen’ and movie star, Humaima Malick, opposite Emraan.
Although, Humaima made her début in the Pakistani film industry with ‘Bol’, back in 2011, in Bollywood this is her first release. There were a lot of expectations for the movie to be a success for everyone, including Emraan, Humaima, Kunal and Kay Kay Menon.
So, what happened to the movie?
Let’s explore that thought.
Raja Natwarlal is a typical revenge saga of a con-man, Raja Natwarlal, (Emraan Hashmi) fighting for the cold-blooded murder of his partner cum caretaker, Raghav (Deepak Tijori). Raja stands up against all odds to take vengeance from Vardha Yadav (Kay Kay Menon) with the help of a retired con artist, Yogi (Paresh Rawal). Raja leaves his love toy, Ziya (Humaima Malick) – a bar dancer, back in India and flies to Cape Town (Raghav’s empire) with Yogi to con Raghav. What happens next is a typical Bollywood caricature.
Kunal and Emraan, together, gave some great hits in the past, including Jannat and Jannat 2, but this time despite being 100% dedicated to the show; they couldn’t save the movie from getting lost somewhere in translation. There was no grip in the plot; blame it on the writing, editing or whatever – Raja Natwarlal sinked at the box office.
Performance wise, it is a decent affair. Emraan gives a 100% to both his images; as a revenge seeker he was believable and livid, and as a serial kisser he is back in form. And Humaima Malick does not restrict herself in any scene. In fact, she looks gorgeous throughout the film and shows no signs of shyness. She cannot be called cheap or vulgar under any circumstances for this character. She managed to look naturally sensuous. However, she deserved a much better character than just ‘acting as a support’ sort of part.
Deepak Tijori is back on the silver screen, after a hiatus, in a brief role. He performs decently and gives exactly what was expected from him. Kay Kay Menon and Paresh Rawal were the usual: detailed, faultless and a treat to watch in some scenes.
All the main characters in Raja Natwarlal are experienced and cannot be questioned on their performance potentials. The only new bird in the flock was Humaima Malick, and even she bagged (unofficially) three movie-deals as a result of this performance. One is with Vidhu Vinod Chopra (starring Sharman Joshi opposite her) and the other with Shaan, titled ‘Mission Allahuakbar’, which is about to hit Pakistani cinema theatres in 2014.
In totality, Raja Natwarlal has nothing novel or interesting to offer; a list of talented actors is wasted. I would rate it two out of five and I am being generous.
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