Dec 14, 2009

Movie Review: Rocket Singh- Salesman of the Year



I know - I really don't do movie reviews on this blog (and this one doesn't count as one) but I do really want to point you guys to go see Rocket Singh - Salesman of the Year.



It has to be Hindi cinema's first movie that is all about corporate life and building a business.

The story itself is straightforward, HS Bedi (Ranbir Kapoor) scrapes through his BCom exams - and knows that entering the hallowed portals of high end B School is beyond his capabilities.

However he does have a talent for persuading people - so he lands up getting a job as a Sales Trainee with Computer parts seller AYS. AYS is owned and run by the corrupt Mr. Puri who does not hesistate to bribe Purchase Managers to sell his computers.

Poor Bedi blows the whistle about a client who demands a bribe - and is promptly banned from going to sell. His colleagues get their sales targets increased and hate him.

Hurt and angry, Bedi subverts the official way of doing business and launches his own stealth startup called "Rocket Sales Corp" recruiting the Receptionist, the Office Peon, The Service Engineer and finally the Sales Manager too.

The story never meanders from this path - and there are no typical Bollywood dances or songs - and even the love interest is dispensed early with.

And there are tonnes of career and work related quotes. For example, Mr Puri loves quoting "हर बन्दे में एक ऊपर जाने की quality होती है और एक नीचे जाने की . फरक येही है की वोह कौनसी quality को बढ़ता है" (Everyone has a quality that takes him to the top and another that takes him to the bottom. Where you finally end up depends on which you utilise)

Finally Bedi has the last laugh - and shows that building a business using ethical practices is possible and their are clients who value it and cannot be bought - showcasing the way business is done in India is changing. As he tells Puri in the end "You concentrated on the numbers and didn't care about the relationships - however I learnt that if one focuses on the relationships the numbers will come"

I kid you not, at that point I wanted to get up and clap.

Yessir, this is a landmark film for Indian moviedom. It's going to be a cult film for the corporate crowd :-)

Some people told me that they felt the movie was a bit on the long side, and I agree that some tight editing would have made it even better.

P.S. On another note - I also love the social media integration of the movie- like on Facebook, Twitter and the Blog

P.P.S. Other people have pointed out that even Corporate was a movie based on corporate life. Yes that's true. But while Corporate was about larger than life issues, melodramatic and holier than thou - Rocket Singh is about a protagonist with whom the audience can empathise.