Raabta starts off with, a playboy-ish Sushant Singh Rajput playing, Shiv checking out another girl while on a date. The girl responds with the same enthusiasm as Shiv. This girl is Saira (Kriti Sanon). Then comes Jim Sarbh as an entitled jerk who gets everything he wants and now he wants Saira. When his efforts to win her heart fail, he does what any man who is not in a movie would refrain from and kidnaps her and takes her to his mansion on a remote island. The story goes into the flashback of the reincarnation where Saira is a princess warrior and the love triangle continues.The chemistry of Sushant Singh Rajput as Shiv and Kriti Sanon as Saira is something to look out for in the future. Sushant is perfectly cast as Shiv.Sadly, Jim Sarbh does not live up to the expectations laid down by his performance in Neerja. Neither he nor his character are good enough for the movie. The climax is at most laughable. All in all it is a one-time watch and you might fall in love with the chemistry of the lead pair.

Aarushi Kohli
Hindustan Times

Reincarnation is still a sought-after theme for the Hindi film industry despite its fondness for modern clothes, gadgets and locations. Commercially successful films and shows like Baahubali and Game Of Thrones also influence choices. Sometimes, then, filmmakers appear stuck in a dilemma . Debutant director Dinesh Vijan is probably one of them. Vijan’s Raabta (Urdu for connection) is thematically a ‘love-never-dies’ sort of a film, and it wants to look glossy, which means the characters are likely to make transitions in time and space. With such predictability comes the challenge of striking a balance between two different time zones. Raabta struggles real hard there. Vijan’s vision is clichéd and that hampers the film more than anything else. The guy and the girl have to look up-market and thus are a banker and a chocolate maker. The cynical one has to creepily sing old Hindi songs and paint. Such films also need an indispensable friend for occasional comic relief and good-natured flower sellers to make us believe in the beauty of mankind. Nothing wrong, just clichéd. But that’s also wasting terrifically talented actors such as Sushant Singh Rajput and Jim Sarbh. They are capable of more than simply repeating what we have already seen. Rajput and Sarbh try despite striking loopholes in the screenplay, and that saves Raabta to a good extent. Rajput, in particular, rises and does what is expected of him. He is pleasant and performs action sequences with aplomb. His cockiness may appeal to some. Sarbh makes the most of the opportunity and shines as a person struggling to come to terms with the reality. Raabta lacks the finesse required to pull off a theme like this, but it is definitely good to look at. From Budapest to colour blasts during flashback scenes, it features some captivating moments. Sadly that doesn’t seem enough. Poor writing is Raabta’s nemesis provided you don’t want to settle for a ‘being there’ done that’ kind of a story.

Rohit Vats
India Today

Director Dinesh Vijan picked up an oft-displayed story, of lovers for whom death is too puny a word. His story meanders through this life and that with love being at the centre of it all through. The fact that Raabta doesn't lose its core message, that of love, is one of the few redeemable factors in this film. You will have to try really hard to love Raabta the film because you feel strangely out of touch with pretty much everything after a point. There are well-choreographed, elaborate fight sequences set some eight hundred years ago. But despite the props used in Raabta, the film can hardly save itself from sinking into an abyss of boredom. Raabta feels strangely stretched. There's no spark in the story. Despite all the efforts of showing Budapest in all its glory (you know where your next holiday is going to be), and Shiv and Saira's chemistry, Raabta falls flat on its face. Every film that deals with the fantastical post Baahubali, is not Baahubali after all. Sushant Singh Rajput gives himself in to his role. It is a delight to see him on screen. After MS Dhoni The Untold Story, Sushant plays both his characters in Raabta with elan. Shiv and Jilan are Sushant. Kriti Sanon too blends into her roles as Saira and Saiba. But it is Jim Sarbh who is the North Star in this firmament. Sarbh is menacing. He sends shivers down your spine. Raabta, thankfully, gives enough screen-time to this fabulous actor to prove his mettle yet again. Rajkummar Rao is completely unrecognisable in his cameo. Varun Sharma carries his Fukrey's Chucha to Raabta too, with hilarious consequences at times and bland at others. But the biggest obstacle in the path of Raabta is the story. The subject is nothing that has not been done in Indian cinema earlier. The way the story is treated takes a toll on your patience. Seeing actors like Sushant and Jim being bulldozed by this sorry excuse of a film is plain painful. Songs like Ik Vaari Aa and the title track (with a smouldering Deepika Padukone) are hummable. Watch Raabta for Sushant and Jim. This a story of love through ages and lives, but Vijan is no Alfred Noyes. And Raabta is no Highwayman.

Ananya Bhattacharya
The Times of India

The most common advice writers get is: “Show, don’t tell.” It means that a storyteller is expected to paint a picture as opposed to describing things mechanically. Raabta spends a lot of time telling you things, and not nearly enough in making them seem believable. Writers Siddharth-Garima and debut director Dinesh Vijan’s conviction isn’t questionable, but it doesn’t quite translate to the screen. Even though the movie is technically sound and looks great, it is missing the raw passion required to sell a love story. Especially one that’s been brewing for 800 years! As much as you can force influences into a love story, you can’t force love itself. Neither with good-looking actors flirting with chocolates and flowers. Nor with an ambitious flashback that adds years as opposed to maturity to the plot. But Raabta relies on this kind of forced love rather than the force of love. Sushant Singh Rajput is a fine actor but lacks the casual charm required to make the self-important Shiv lovable. Jim Sarbh’s dialogue delivery is painfully awkward; he doesn't have the gravitas required for spouting those evil-genius kind of lines in Hindi. Kriti Sanon surprises. She looks good and seems to have honed her acting skills. If sparks flew more organically, it would have been easier to make a connection with this epic tale of love.

Nihit Bhave
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| 22 Apr 2017