Americans Love RRR!
And they can’t stop talking about it
Over the last month, my YouTube has been flooded with many American reviewers going crazy over this Tollywood flick. Many American YouTubers are getting together to discuss the movie in live group discussions, and some of them are comparing it with the same director Rajamouli’s previous blockbuster Baahubali movies.
This movie was relatively unknown during its theatrical run in the United States. But the movie has reached the top of everyone’s recommendations of 2022 once it released in Netflix. The subscribers of Netflix have the benefit of watching the Baahubali series also. Going by the craze of Rajamouli in United States right now, bringing his blockbuster movies on its platform might help Netflix attract more subscribers.
I enjoyed listening to American’s perspective about the movie and why the movie impressed them despite many high quality CGI-filled make believe action thriller flicks releasing in Hollywood every year. These were some of their prominent reasons:
- They are fed-up of wokeness in Hollywood movies, i.e., forceful inclusion of different ethnic groups for the sake of representation without using their diversity to enhance the quality of the story and storytelling. Both Baahubali and RRR are unabashedly masculine yet have strong and assertive female characters that hold their own in the world of superhuman male protagonists.
- The magic of Rajamouli’s storytelling. He has spent more than two decades to create a movie so close to perfection as RRR. Even his previous venture Baahubali had some flaws that were easily apparent. His dedication to his craft and his team of dedicated experts in different fields of movie making has over the years honed their craft to perfection. This is why Americans loved every aspect of the movie, especially the visual effects, the background score, the make-up, performances and editing. These people deeply analyze movies and were quick to point out flaws in RRR but the experience is so captivating that they ignore that and re-watch it just to enjoy the experience.
- It is an independent standalone movie with no connection to a cinematic universe. So anyone can enjoy it without needing to watch any other movie before watching this one.
- This movie has all genres — action, thriller, bromance, romcom, historic fiction, superhero, drama, patriotism etc. Americans don’t get more than a couple of genres in their movie and to get so much packed in just 3 hours is like a grand buffet where every genre is more tasty than the other.
- The movie shows Indian culture that is both new and exciting for many people living in the West. It introduces the richness, vibrancy and vastness of the culture of a country that the West generally knows through movies that showcase either poverty, disease or discrimination.
Moreover, I learned a lot of subtleties in the movie that I hadn’t observed. For instance, one American YouTuber noted that Ram Charan’s character has different beard length based on the role he was playing: no beard when he is a police officer serving the british, little beard when he is bromancing with Junior NTR’s character and long beard when he finally embraces his mission and fights against the british.
One YouTube comment by an Indian in some group discussion on YouTube by Americans shared this observation, which I think is brilliant (both the subtext and its observation):
The whole bridge sequence is cool but at the same time, it also summarizes the whole movie plot. Ram’s mission is regarding the country (jumps with a Flag) and Bheem’s mission is to save the child from his tribe (jumps to get the child) and in this journey they exchange their missions (exchange of flag and child) and eventually succeed helping each other.
I am really excited that many YouTubers from the West, especially United States, are discussing RRR and Baahubali, and asking for recommendations for other such grand epic Indian movies. This will open up wider market for Indian movies that celebrate the original Indian culture and people from the other side of the glob will appreciate and enjoy the Indian style of storytelling.