In the run-up to awards season, which begins next Tuesday with the Golden Globes, ‘RRR’ by SS Rajamouli became an unlikely trailblazer. The film was a big hit in its home country of India, but it was released overseas and then streamed by Netflix that made it a global phenomenon. It has received two Golden Globe nominations and is expected to receive an Oscar nomination as well. Meanwhile, this NT Rama Rao Jr and Ram Charan starrer is in the British Academy Film Awards (BAFTA) longlist in the ‘Film Not in the English Language’ category. Shaunak Sen’s ‘All that Breathes’ also entered the longlist.
The long list also includes ‘All Quiet on the Western Front’, ‘Argentina, 1985’, ‘Bardo, False Chronicle of a Handful of Truths’, ‘Close’, ‘Corsage’, ‘Decision To Leave’, ‘EO’ , ‘Holy Spider’ and ‘The Quiet Girl’.
‘RRR’ follows two real-life revolutionaries who took over the power of the British Empire in the early 20th century. Alluri Sitarama Raju (Charan) and Komaram Bheem (Rama Rao) join forces in 1920 to fight the colonialists. Ajay Devgn, Alia Bhatt, Shriya Saran, Samuthirakani, Ray Stevenson, Alison Doody and Olivia Morris were also in the cast of ‘RRR’.
The Indian government has selected Pan Nalin’s Gujarati film ‘Chhello Show’ as the official entry for the ‘Best Foreign Film’ Oscars, but that has not deterred Rajamouli and his supporters in the US. They were even more excited about the film’s chances in major categories including Best Director and Best Picture.
Wion’s film critic Shomini Sen called the film “a superhero film set in pre-independent India”. She wrote: “RRR” is a superhero fantasy film. It is best not to compare it with Rajamouli’s hugely successful ‘Baahubali’ franchise and it is not as sharp as ‘Eega’. Maybe he was meant to be a masala entertainer and that’s all. But could a filmmaker of SS Rajamouli’s stature have made a film with a more coherent plot? Yes, sure.”