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Adipurush Movie Review: A new scale to test your patience

Modified On: 22 June 2023 | Reviewed By:

As far as retelling and redefining Ramayana goes, Adipurush ain't it.


Director: Om Raut | Music Director: M.M. Keeravani

Adipurush Movie Poster

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The highly anticipated movie of the year, Adipurush, finally released and I had to take some time to gather myself before writing its review. Not because, it is mind-blowing but because it was a huge disappointment. After watching the movie’s teaser and trailers, I was ready to look past the VFX and focus solely on the plot and characters and how well the epic has been executed.

But, honestly, I do have to mention the visual effects as it is hard for one to look past them. For a legendary epic that lives in the hearts of millions of people, the movie should have focused more on the plot and characters. But the creators have chosen to fill the screen with nothing but disappointing VFX and expected the audience to just roll with it. The VFX of the movie gives off the impression that it was made for children. And if I’m being honest, the cartoon version of Ramayana that I grew up watching was much better than this.

I won’t waste any more time talking about the VFX, because there is no point at all. But the characters and the plot of the movie is something the creators should have paid great attention to. While even a little research goes a long way in recreating epics like Ramayana, it just seems like the creators have done absolutely no groundwork on it.

Let’s start with the main protagonist, Ram. Now, the Ram that me and you know, is a very calm person. But the way the movie depicts Lord Ram is just the complete opposite of this image. Ravana, well I do not have to say much about him, the trailer itself is enough to show how the movie has failed to capture his persona. The way Ravana has been depicted visually feels like the creators drew inspiration from western series like Game of Thrones instead of actually referring to the epic. Speaking of Game of Thrones, Adipurush just feels like an amalgamation of Game of Thrones, Lord of the Rings and other movies. At no point while watching the movie did I feel like this was a visual adaptation of the beloved epic.

The worst thing about this however is not the VFX. Hear me out. It’s the dialogues. Like, to an extent I can understand how you can mess up the VFX or the characters but to completely change the way these legendary figures speak for nothing but the “mass” factor is just painfully ignorant. No matter how much they say this is their version of Ramayana or whatever, the least you can do is to be at least aware of the time that the epic happened. And just like that Adipurush became the “Bollywood Ramayana”, with its unrealistically modern characters and punch dialogues.

For me, the way the story was executed seemed scattered. Maybe it was the lack of character establishment, but some portions of the movie just didn’t sit right with me. The creators just expected the audience to connect with the characters or feel for them without establishing anything. It is as if they assumed since we know the story, we would randomly appreciate and connect with this as well! Well, the least they could have done was to get the persona of the characters right, but they failed there as well. Without proper establishment, nothing can happen between the audience and the characters on this screen.

And when did Lanka become so dark and modern? Lord Ravana’s castle looks like Hotel Transylvania (especially with the bats). If my memory is correct, Lanka is made of gold in the original epic. I wonder how it became this dark and brooding place filled with bats and a dragon. Anyway the Asuras, the entirety of them, are also depicted utterly wrong. They reminded me of the orcs from Lord of the Rings. I also have to mention the difference in the depiction of Hanuman, Bali and Sugreev. All of them should have similar features according to the actual story but Bali and Sugreev have the features of a gorilla while Hanuman retains the original features from the epic. And although this has already been discussed in various platforms, I just have to say it again; Vanarasena in Adipurush is a copied version of Planet of the Apes.

There are a lot of things that you can do in the name of creative liberty but this felt like the creators were testing the patience of the audience and making a fool out of us. It is ok to do a redefined version of Ramayana, but to get every single element wrong is just you not doing the basic research required to adapt the original epic into a movie.

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