Movie Review: Romeo Ranjha

Review by +Bikram Bathh
Cine Punjab Reviews
May 17, 2014

Director Navaniat Singh is a name that has made it big in the Punjabi film industry. Be it his romantic drama Tera Mera Ki Rishta, romantic action drama Mel Karade Rabba, political thriller Dharti, sports drama Taur Mittran Di or his recent masala entertainer Singh Vs Kaur, he has proved to be one of the most versatile directors around. Now, when he teams up with the biggest producers of Punjabi Cinema (Gunbir Sidhu and Manmord Sidhu) to make the first Con-Comedy (of our cinema), stakes are obviously going to be high. Add to that names like action director Allan Amin (Dhoom Series fame), Prince of Bhangra Jazzy B and the latest singing sensation Garry Sandhu, expectations become huge.

The important question is.. does the film deliver what it promised?
And the simple answer is a yes. It falters at places but believe me if I say "Punjabi Cinema has grown by leaps and bounds", this film serves as a perfect reference check to my statement. There was a time when we only had religious films (60's-70's) which moved on to revenge action films (80's-90's), than switched to drama films (00's) and recently a lot of comedies (10's) but Romeo Ranjha takes that much needed giant leap and shows us that internationalized action has arrived in Punjabi Cinema.

Synopsis: Romeo (Jazzy B) and Ranjha (Garry Sandhu) are both from Punjab who went to Thailand to fulfill their dreams. One day accidentally they meet each other and get very excited to know that they are both from Punjab and become good friends. While working hard, having fun they managed to make loads of money! In the mean time, Ranjha falls in love with a girl named Preet who runs a refugee camp with the help of her uncle. Preet introduces Ranjha to him and he placed the condition that he can marry Preet only if he can 'place a huge charity for the refugees'. Ranjha wants to marry Preet so he took money that him and Romeo had earned together! Romeo found out about the missing money and went to find him and when he did, asked about the money and when Ranjha tells him what had happened, he told him he too got cheated by Preet and her uncle! They both start searching for them and come to know that Preet and her Uncle are in Punjab and the mystery continues.

Story/Screenplay/Dialogues: Romeo Ranjha's story and screenplay are written by Dheeraj Rattan and frankly this is the lowest point of the film. The story (although lifted from several sources) is fine but the screenplay goes haywire in the middle of the film, making it unbearable for a few people, however, if you can sustain that part, the film ends with a bang. Both the romantic angles are totally out of sync with the film and could have been easily avoided. Tracks of Rancho and Mancho are unanswered, too many cinematic liberties also spoil the screenplay. Dialogues by Amberdeep Singh are okay and fit the film well. However, a better screenplay would have made Romeo Ranjha much larger in scope. Average

Acting: Jazzy B is back with his second film after last year's Best Of Luck and here he gets a role that fits his persona very well. He has worked really hard on his acting and one can see that during several key scenes of the film (especially the comic ones). He does look aged at times but it can be taken care in the future with better make-up. Garry Sandhu makes his debut with Romeo Ranjha and he has done a fine job. Although it will be better if we wait for a few more films before deciding on their fate in the film industry. However, one thing that I'll like to definitely add here.. is the chemistry between these two actors, it is first-rate and it would be very interesting to see if they would be seen together in a film again (probably a sequel to this one?). Monica Bedi is decent, better than her last film Sirphire. Parul Gulati is below average so is the new actress Aman Grewal. Yograj Singh and Rana Jung Bahadur are as always competent. Rana Ranbir is good. Overall, Good!

Music: Music of the film is fine and tracks like Jugnu, Chandri Raat and ofcourse the title track are bound to be loved by the audience. However, it could have been way better especially when you have singers like Jazzy B and Garry Sandhu. Background music is good. Overall, Good! 

Direction and Technical Aspects: Navaniat Singh has always been praised for his versatility but having said that, the major criticism for his work has been in the form of some minor loopholes here and there leaving his direction skills from being far from perfect. It is high time that he gets some great people in his direction team who can point out these minor flaws at the time of shoot and not embarrass him once the film is on the editing table. Cinematographer Harmeet Singh (Navaniat's dad) has done a fantastic job especially with all the aerial shots. However, the real scene stealer here is action director Allan Amin who has worked on getting some amazing stunts, chases and thrill sequences lifting the value of the film to a never seen before level in Punjabi Cinema. Lastly, kudos to the producers for spending so lavishly and showing the way forward to the film industry. Overall, Good! 

Romeo Ranjha is a con-comedy with action elements that form some really unseen sequences for a Punjabi film. The film is a path breaker in terms of action and production values, however a better screenplay would have made it a complete blockbuster material. If you want to watch a Punjabi commercial film that will be remembered for its brave attempt and excellent chemistry between its lead stars Jazzy B and Garry Sandhu, don't miss Romeo Ranjha.

Rating - ★★½  (Extra ★ for a brave attempt)

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