Adipurush teaser! Hey Ram! Prabhas looks more like Ravan, Saif’s beard is reminiscent of Vivek Agnihotri

‘Disappointed’ trends as director Om Raut’s much hyped epic film looks more like a poor cartoon drama. The average VFX threatens to break the deal.

Prabhas and Saif Ali Khan (R) in Adipurush [2023]

By Mayur Lookhar

The buzz around the film has been huge. A teaser that was to be launched in the birth place of Lord Ram – Ayodhya. The core team had met the UP chief Minister, prayed at river Sarayu few days ago. The last few days have been about the Adipurush [2023] teaser. Sadly, all the hype has come a cropper with a very disappointing teaser.

We’re not alone in saying this as social media is flooded with hashtags disappointed, cartoon. One cannot blame the netizens as the Adipurush teaser ends up looking like a poor cartoon film. Much of that is down due to its pedestrian VFX.

Saif Ali Khan in Adipurush [2023]

Lord Ram had defeated the demon king Ravana with the help of an army of monkeys, but replicating that into a feature has been the biggest challenge for any filmmaker. Ramanand Sagar’s TV series was much appreciated in the times it was set [1987], In 2022, armed with money and VFX studios, fans would have expected director Om Raut’s Adipurush to redefine the Hindu epic. Sadly, the teaser leaves most people disappointed.

Leave the poor, cringe worthy VFX aside, what we felt was that here the hero [Prabhas] is looking more like a Ravan, while the villain Saif Ali Khan, in a clean shaven look was more apt to play the Lord than the demon king. Khan’s beard is reminiscent of Vivek Ranjan Agnihotri. The right wing, and maybe even Sri Lankans would mock Saif for resembling Alauddin Khilji more than Ravan.

Kindly note, Prabhas, Kriti Sanon and Khan’s characters are not said to be named after the three principal characters of Ramayana. The trio is said to be playing Raghava, Janaki, and Lankesh, respectively. Raghava means descendant of Raghu, Goddess Sita was the daughter of King Janak, and hence referred to as Janaki. Ravan hailed from Lanka, and so naturally, he was addressed as Lankesh [ruler of Lanka].

Poor Kriti Sanon has the odd scene, and there too, it appears as if she’s been given some designer clothing than the humble attire that Sita wore in the jungle. Remember, Lord Ram was given a vanvaas [jungle sentence] where he lived like a sage. His wife Sita and his brother Lakshman accompanied him and they, too, wore simple clothes. If that wasn’t enough, the poor dialogue by Prabhas “Aa raha hun main, nyay ke do pairon se, anyay ke dus sar kuchal ne” singes you. It is so bad that we can’t even translate it into English.

Every frame of the teaser appears so cartoonish that it begs the question, couldn’t T-Series have saved a few 100 crores had they made it as an animated film? Comparisons (in VFX) with Western fantasy films/series will be made, but we won’t even get there. The sole saving grace of the teaser is the voice of Sharad Kelkar, who is most likely to do the voice over for Telugu actor Prabhas.

The film is set to be released on 12 January, 2023. With still over three months to go, we wonder whether there is any scope for the makers to improve the quality of the CGI [Computer Generated Imagery]. Sadly, at the moment, this teaser feels like Chimpanzee Generated Imagery.

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