Indian cinema has seen a flurry of politics-tinged biographical films of late. I say tinged because they have only a faint connection to actual events. They are dramas first, political biopics later. Not long after Anupam Kher starrer Dr Manmohan Singh biopic, The Accidental Prime Minister and Nawazuddin Siddiqui’s Thackeray, a teaser for My Name Is RaGa has been released.
RaGa, in case you are not aware, is a diminutive of Rahul Gandhi, the scion of the Gandhi family and president of the Indian National Congress. The teaser is laughably bad.
The clip begins with Rahul as a young boy, who is seen inside a swimming pool as Indira Gandhi looks on with pride. The pool is placed right before a palatial home to show Rahul’s lavish upbringing. He is then shown straightening the leg of a filthy doll somewhere. And then there is a sequence which shows Indira getting shot and Rahul weeping over the incident. Still grieving, he asks his father, Rajiv, whether he would be killed too.
Dr Manmohan appears to inform Rahul, “Ab tumhara samay aa chuka hai. Ab tumhe chamakna hai.” (“Now your time has come. It is your moment to shine.”) The actor who is playing the role of Dr Manmohan is doing an impression that is somehow even worse than Anupam Kher’s .
Anyhow, Rahul plunges into politics but not before whining to Sonia that he is not ready. In a press conference, when asked if he is unsuccessful, Rahul says. “Yes.” When asked if he will fail again, he says, “Yes.” The filmmakers seem to be trying to present Rahul as a man with candour and honesty. Unfortunately, everything about the video feels like a parody.
Rupesh Paul, who has helmed the film, earlier spoke about the movie and said, “The movie has no intentions to glorify Rahul or to demystify him. It’s the story of a coming back of a human being who had been ridiculously attacked. Anyone who has fearlessly confronted defeat and failure can relate to this story. In that sense, I don’t want to call this a biopic, it’s a story of any man who becomes unstoppable after he wins over a catastrophic life.”