|Directed by||Mani Shankar|
|Produced by||Nitin Manmohan
|Screenplay by||Mani Shankar|
|Story by||Mani Shankar|
|Narrated by||Amitabh Bachchan|
|Cinematography||T. Surendra Reddy|
|Edited by||Mani Shankar|
|Distributed by||Karma Entertainment|
Rudraksh directed by Mani Shankar is a 2004 science-fiction horror film starring Sanjay Dutt, Sunil Shetty, Bipasha Basu and Isha Koppikar. The film has many references to Ramayana ("The Path of Rāma"), one of the most famous and influential epic poems of India.
Dr. Gayatri (Bipasha Basu) is an Indian American paranormal researcher at University of California, researching esoteric practices such as voodoo, spirit possession, magic and healing powers. She seeks the hidden knowledge that goes into such practices, the knowledge that cannot be explained by science or logic.
Her search for answers brings her and her team of scientists to India. She comes across Varun (Sanjay Dutt) a man who is gifted with special intuitive and healing powers which he claims to have developed through meditation. He is a blend of Indian philosophy and modern culture, a master at martial arts and a devotee of Lord Hanuman. He worships and trains by day, while working as a bouncer at a club by night. Gayatri is immediately impressed by Varun’s powers to take away pain and disease from people and cure them. He becomes the subject of her study.
After a few experiments by Gayatri, Varun has an insight about the existence of a dark power that is hidden. He explains that the force is linked to Ravana's Rudraksh, which is hidden away from the world. This is not a normal Rudraksh - it carries in its seed the powers that can transmute humans into new species. The bearer of this Rudraksh will have supernatural powers beyond imagination. In the language of science, it is a 'multi-dimensional hologram' in the form of a seed. Meanwhile, Bhuria (Sunil Shetty), a Rakshasa, mentally communicates with Varun, so they can share their abilities since neither of them can utilize full power of the Rudraksha alone. Varun, refuses but Bhuria continues his attempts to join their powers and manipulate Varun.
Gayatri finds about a set of strange words which cause changes in people when spoken. She tests the effects of those sounds on a rat, and notices strange mutations and changes in functioning of the rat's body. Suzy, Gayatri's research assistant, hears those sounds directly, becomes possessed and starts working for Bhuria. Suzy tries to kill Gayatri, but Varun over powers her and saves Gayatri, after which Suzy dies while trying to escape.
Varun and Gayatri thus set out to discover this Rudraksh, the reality of Bhuria and also find certain answers for Varun's own self. Their perilous journey leafs through the most rugged terrains of the Himalayas to the mysterious ruins of the legendary King Ravana's palaces in Yala, Sri Lanka.
He thus finds how Bhuria, a poor but wild and arrogant labor contractor in excavation team of the Rudraksha, transformed into a powerful Rakshasha & possessor of supernatural powers, that the words spoken by the madman were actually an ancient verse, a Rakshasha mantra, and that the real aim of Bhuria is to use the Rudraksha and Rakshasha mantra for spreading evil and hatred in the world, thus effectively restoring the rule of rakshashas once more.
It thus, once more becomes a battle of good vs. evil, where either must overcome the other.
Rudraksh was a moderate commercial success, with collections of ₹450 million (US$7.0 million) in three weeks after its release. Critically, it was panned across the spectrum of reviewers for its tacky visuals, over usage of gimmicky computer generated effects and the actors hammy performance, which didn't help the already amateurish screenplay. Even film critic Taran Adarsh, known for being quite lenient with his ratings, criticized this film's screenplay.
- Sanjay Dutt as Varun
- Sunil Shetty as Bhuria
- Bipasha Basu as Dr. Gayatri
- Isha Koppikar as Lalli, Bhuria's girlfriend and a contract killer
- Kabir Bedi as Pandit Ved Bhushan, a saint and Varun's father
- Farhad shahnawaz in Supporting Role
- Vinay Varma as Mantrik
- Agnes Darenius as Suzy, Dr. Gayatri's research assistant
- Negar Khan
- Virendra Saxena as security guard
- Narration by Amitabh Bacchan
|Compilation album by Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy|
12 December 2003 (India)
|Genre||Feature film soundtrack|
|1||Ishq Khudai||Krishna, Mahalakshmi Iyer, Shankar Mahadevan, Shweta Pandit||5:21||Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy|
|2||Ishq Hai Nasha Nasha||Shaan, Sunidhi Chauhan||4:13||Vishal-Shekhar|
|3||Dil Ki Aahein||KK, K.S. Chitra||5:03||Shashi Pritam|
|4||Kya Dard Hai||Instrumental||5:46||Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy|
|6||Rak-rak-rak||Shankar Mahadevan, Gayatri Ganjawala, Kunal Ganjawala||6:17||Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy|
|7||Ishq Khudai- Remix||Krishna, Mahalakshmi Iyer, Shankar Mahadevan, Shweta Pandit||8:02||Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy|
|8||Bole - Dole||Bhaumik, K.S. Chitra, Sandeep, Shashi Pritam||4:21||Shashi Pritam|
|9||Kya Dard Hai||Richa Sharma, Shankar Mahadevan||5:40||Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy|