Rakshabandhan Movie Review
Rakshabandhan is a 2022 movie starring Akshay Kumar, Bhumi Pednekar, Sahejmeen Kaur, Smriti Srikanth, Sadia Khateeb, and Deepika Khanna. Directed and produced by Aanand. L. Rai, it was released on 11 August 2022 in the theatres.
It is a heart-touching family drama whose story revolves around the pure bond of brother and sister. Akshay Kumar, aka Lala Kedarnath, runs a chaat shop in Chandni Chowk. He is the oldest son and the only brother to the four sisters. He promises his mother, who is on her deathbed that he will not marry until he settles all his four sisters by getting them married in a suitable family. Lala Kedarnath puts all his efforts into finding the best matches for his younger sisters. But on the other hand, his personal love life is at risk. His childhood love, Sapna, aka Bhumi Pednekar, supports him and decides to wait for Lala to fulfill his promise first, whereas her father continuously forces her to marry fast; otherwise, he will marry her to someone else.
Lala Kedarnath encounters a matchmaker, Shanoo, who decides to find a groom for his four sisters. At the same time, Lala learns that Sapna's father, Hari Shankar is also in touch with the matchmaker to find a groom for her daughter Sapna. Soon Shanoo finds a groom for Lala's sister Gayatri. Sapna believes her love story will finally be completed, but destiny has something else written for Lala and his family, and things start to unfold differently. Will Lala be able to keep up his promise, or is something else written in his fate?
Rakshabandhan is a simple yet heart-touching tale of a brother and four sisters. The responsibility of the four sisters is on the shoulders of the eldest and the only brother. The story revolves around the efforts made by the brother to find the best matches for his sisters, whereas, on the other hand, his personal life was getting ignored.
The movie's first half is light-hearted and filled with love and teasing depicting the beauty of a brother-sister bond. The second half of the movie is quite emotional, where the scenes and story are found to be repetitive. The writing is weak and could have been more effective. The ending of the movie is touching with some unexpected twists. Dialogues are poorly delivered, and the plot seems lost after the interval as the story revolves around dowry. Humor is often misplaced. The movie is heart-touching, but it could have been more entertaining if it had been written more efficiently. The songs in the movie are composed by Himesh Reshamiya and are overlooked. Although the theme of the movie is of great concern, the delivery of the subject could be more substantial and crisper.
The movie gives a strong message to stop the dowry system and to educate and empower women. In the whole movie, Akshay Kumar, aka Kedar, struggles to collect money for the dowry of his sisters. The women are shown as helpless and must be married as soon as possible. They are being body-shamed where the eldest of all, Gayatri, is shown as thin, fair and beautiful whereas for others, one is fat, one is dusky, and the other is tomboyish. Few dialogues in the movie are considered bland, facile, and racist. From the beginning of the movie, Akshay Kumar, aka Kedar, is shown passing racist comments to his sisters. He feels his only responsibility is to marry them off and arrange money for their dowry. Here Kedar represents the whole society that believes that a dark-skinned girl or a fat girl can't get married. Even so, he argues against a woman who tries to stop the dowry system by saying she is trying to make the girl's father feel ashamed. From his perspective, a father feels proud by marrying off his daughter, even if it costs him a fortune. But as the movie unfolds, Kedar finally realizes that his actual responsibility is to empower his sisters and make them independent.
Akshay Kumar: Akshay Kumar, as always, has wholly justified his role as Lala Kedarnath, the eldest and the only brother of the four sisters. Akshay Kumar, yet again, chooses a theme concerning social evil: dowry. Akshay Kumar, as Lala, is seen to be finding grooms for his four sisters. But every groom he meets asks for dowry. Lala has to sell off his kidney to marry off her first sister. Akshay Kumar fits entirely into his role and delivers every emotion of the character perfectly, as always. Although, from the beginning of the movie, Akshay, aka Kedar, is seen passing racist comments and body-shaming his sisters as a joke, which is quite racist in the movie, as the movie unfolds, Kedar learns the lesson that the actual power lies not in the looks but in educating his sisters and making them independent instead of collecting money for their dowry.
After Toilet Ek Prem Katha, Akshay Kumar is again seen opposite Bhumi Pednekar, who has played the role of his childhood love. The duo has done justice to their roles, and their chemistry has added life to the lifeless script of the movie.
Bhumi Pednekar: Bhumi Pednekar as Sapna Gupta, the love interest of Akshay Kumar, aka Lala Kedarnath, has wholly justified her role. The only aim of Sapna is to marry Kedarnath. Although Akshay, as Kedar, keeps his wedding on hold for the sake of his vow of marrying off his sisters first, Sapna, diligent towards the love of her life, decides to support Kedar's decision and wait for him. Thanks to the acting skills of Bhumi, who successfully delivers every emotion that Sapna goes through.
Other Characters: Sadia Khateeb played the role of the eldest of the four sisters, Gayatri. She made her debut with Vidhu Vinod Chopra's Shikara in 2020. The parts of the other three sisters are played by Sahejmeen Kaur, Deepika Khanna, and Smrithi Srikanth, who made their debut in Bollywood with this movie.
Box Office Collection: The first-day domestic box office collection of the movie was ?8.20 crore. The overall worldwide collection of the movie is ?61.58 crore.