To commemorate India’s 77th Independence Day, Legendary actor Kamal Haasan released ‘Hey Ram’ on his official YouTube channel, Raaj Kamal Films International. In a social media post, he called it his “ode to Bapu” on the special occasion. The film has been made available for free viewing to a wider audience to celebrate India’s 77th Independence Day.
‘Hey Ram’ tells the story of Saketh Ram (played by Kamal Haasan), a prominent Hindu intellectual residing in Kolkata (then known as Calcutta) during the violent 1946 riots that engulfed the city in the aftermath of partition. Married to his wife, Aparna (Rani Mukherji), the couple lived a peaceful life. However, one fateful day, as communal tensions and religious conflict spilled onto the streets, Aparna was caught in the crossfire while trying to protect some Muslim children.
She was mercilessly beaten and killed in the violence. The brutal death of his beloved wife shook Saketh to his core. Filled with anguish and anger, he began to lose faith in the nationalist movement and questioned its leaders. In his grief and disillusionment, Saketh started believing that Mahatma Gandhi’s ideology of non-violence and calls for unity between Hindus and Muslims were the reasons behind the country’s descent into chaos. He became convinced that as long as Gandhi was at the helm, India would never know true peace.
With a broken heart and a strong desire for revenge, Saketh then sets out on a mission to assassinate Gandhi (played by Naseeruddin Shah), holding him directly responsible for his wife’s death and the nation’s troubles.
Featuring an ensemble cast including Shah Rukh Khan, Hema Malini, Girish Karnad, Naseeruddin Shah, and Om Puri, ‘Hey Ram’ highlighted important events from India’s freedom struggle. Critics praised Kamal Haasan’s direction and the performances.
Awards and accolades
Despite underperforming at the box office, ‘Hey Ram’ received critical acclaim. It won Best Supporting Actor for Atul Kulkarni and Best Costume Design for Sarika at the 47th National Film Awards.
|Genre||Period crime drama|
|Language||Hindi, English, Bengali|
|Lead Cast||Kamal Haasan, Shah Rukh Khan, Rani Mukherji|
|Budget||₹110 million (estimated)|
|Box Office||₹98.6 million (worldwide gross)|