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NOT REVOLUTIONARY BUT EVOLUTIONARY
NOT REVOLUTIONARY BUT EVOLUTIONARY

By Eye TV India Bureau

Critic's I-view

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Kudos to exceptional and never-before-seen Indian animation in the flick 'Roadside Romeo' sans the not-fun-at-all romantic clich├ęs! Hollywood beware as Bollywood gets into and learns the game of animated movies. As such, the movie is a collaboration between India's famous production company Yashraj Films and the Hollywood's Walt Disney Pictures. 'Roadside Romeo' represents a growing demand in India of movies strictly for kids. It's different in that the flick is not another mythological.

Saif Ali Khan does a great job with his voice to the dog 'Romeo' who's a survivor on the streets ruled by the unruly. A couple of strays join Romeo's crew and we have a dog salon! Cute!! Then follows a rigmarole of romance, drama, comedy and a bit of action aka Bollywood style. Cupid Laila (voiced by Kareena Kapoor) brings love at first sight. Laila puts forth a challenge that pits Romeo opposite the local goon Charlie Anna (voiced by Javed Jaffrey), presumably a mongrel with southern breeding. An obese bully Charlie collects hafta in but his real prize is Laila. But, Romeo outwits Charlie.

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The movie does have impressive animation, meticulous attention has been paid to characters and details of surroundings. But there's want for a fresh and unpredictable script. Jugal Hansraj has given up acting but wrote and directed this canine love story. He seems inept at gripping the audience. The twists and turns are just too predictable. Music is pretty average. Javed Jaffrey seems to go over-the-top at places with his south Indian accent that is incomprehensible at times.

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'Roadside Romeo' is not revolutionary but evolutionary in animation and consistently three-dimensional. It's radiant in color, good motion capture and has a very real-life feel. Each dog is innovatively designed and wins a distinct identity. Dubbing is extremely precise; each voiceover captures the exact emotion and expression for their respective characters. A light-hearted entertainer, 'Roadside Romeo' could keep kids in their seats and occupied for three hours.

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