Posts Tagged ‘shah rukh khan


Movie Review: Don 2

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When Farhan Akhtar remade the 1978 classic Don in 2006, he was clearly under more pressure to get the viewer to accept Shahrukh Khan as Don than he was to tell a fresh story. It was more a remake in the sense that Shahrukh Khan was playing the character that had already been played to perfection almost three decades before. Shahrukh Khan was the only actor who could’ve filled Amitabh Bachchan’s shoes, and even armed with Bachchan’s lines and a whole lot of reference points and Farhan Akhtar’s guidance, he had a hard time convincing cinema buffs that he was the new Don.

In 2011, Farhan Akhtar makes it clear that he isn’t any longer trying to sell SRK as AB. He focuses on storytelling, multiplies the thrills, adds a truckload of witty lines to the thick bunch his father co-wrote for Amitabh Bachchan, and uses Shah Rukh Khan as his primary weapon.

Don surrenders to the police because his enemies are out to kill him; Don escapes from prison with Vardaan (Boman Irani), who was in jail because of him; Don plans and executes a bank heist; Don, in the end, defeats his enemies, and walks away after striking a deal with the cops, and he has what he wants. In short, Don hoodwinks everyone because he’s Don. Anyone can predict that Don will emerge as the one and only winner, but what nobody will expect is Farhan Akhtar to blow your mind. Akthar uses a tight script, a fantastic car-chase sequence, and Lara Dutta, among other things… but these are only to help the story move forward.

Farhan Akhtar blows your mind with Shahrukh Khan, who, in turn, returns to power, acts like none of the other superstars can and probably ever will. His Don does go over the top, and unlike Amitabh Bachchan’s Don, expects and waits for a reaction after delivering his lines, but still, he’s a lot more fun to watch than the others. Aamir Khan will scratch his head for exactly 11 minutes and 57 seconds and will never say anything negative about SRK again. Salman Khan will get drunk and use foul language and his sycophants will say things like “Bhai is upset” and “Bhai is not keeping well” to the press. Abhishek Bachchan, if he hasn’t already, will now realize he is not the heir to his father’s throne. Akshay Kumar will evaporate.

Shah Rukh Khan opens the floodgates of his charm, and the viewer will be eating out of his hands from the first minute of Don 2, wishing it would never end. Shahrukh Khan has the laugh of a movie megastar. The laugh that tells you, when Don is under threat and in great danger or flirting with the hot chick (the ultra-sexy Priyanka Chopra – I love her) who is having the toughest time of her cute life fighting off Don’s advances, that everything is under control. Under Don’s control. Amitabh Bachchan had that laugh, even though I don’t remember him laughing in Don. And SRK has it. They don’t have the same style of laughing, but now there are two styles of laughing Don will be associated with. Maybe it’s because they both just have their own unique styles of laughing? I’m confusing myself here, so excuse me. Shah Rukh, even while hamming occasionally, looks a lot more at ease being Don now, in Don 2.

Priyanka Chopra is the sexiest woman in Bollywood, and she looks even sexier when she acts. There are others in Don 2 too, but you don’t want to know about anyone except SRK and PC, right? Right. But I’ll tell you anyway: Om Puri has become a joke, and Boman Irani gets a better shot at acting than he does in the Munnabhai series.

Don 2 is fucking slick – it’s like watching a Hollywood action-thriller. Farhan Akhtar leaves no loopholes, and makes the story rather believable. If only it hadn’t been stretched all that much to make Don seem like even more of a daredevil (he returns to the bank after executing the heist successfully and vanishing from the scene), Don 2 would have been a compact blockbuster worth watching several times. One more thing I have to credit Don with: he has impeccable taste. We both are extremely fond of wild cats.


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Movie Review: My Name Is Khan

By Saurin Parikh

Indian filmmakers have a penchant – they tend to invariably ruin a movie by having a dumbass melodramatic climax. I don’t know why, but every filmmaker thinks that the Indian audience loves drama, and for a major part, they’re right too. Our aam janta laps up melodrama faster than Virendra Sehwag laps up milk. Be it in on TV or in our films, the more the drama, the more the eyeballs. And in achieving that, if a film is ruined, who cares, right?

Right now, I’m sure the producers and distributors of My Name Is Khan are laughing all the way to the bank. I still believe that the whole tamasha with Shiv Sena was nothing else but a publicity stunt. It achieved what every filmmaker wants – packed houses, especially in the opening weekend. After all the hullaballoo over whether My Name Is Khan would release or not, it finally did (of course) and people went rushing out to buy tickets. I did too, all giddy with excitement when I had the tickets in my hand, and seething with annoyance right now after having watching a just-about-average-highly-disappointing movie.

Firstly, the climax. A hurricane, none the less, engulfs certain parts of America. Rizwan Khan (SRK) has some friends supposedly trapped in a town that has been destroyed by this hurricane. Khan, who is out on a cross country trip to meet the President, somehow reaches that town even before any of the US authorities can. The people of the town can’t get out, but Khan can get in. Why? Obviously because his name is Khan. This heroic act by our superhero leads a nationwide movement wherein citizens are rebuilding cities and towns while the government sits back and does nothing. I think while writing and filming the climax, Karan Johar forgot that his film was based in America, and not India. Government authorities in USA don’t sleep, they’ll reach the needy before any Khan, Kahn, Khandekar or Khanna can.

The question then arises is whether the story required that amount of allowance? The answer is that it doesn’t matter because the story is nothing special anyway. You’ve seen pro-Muslim stories more times than you can count in the last couple of years; it’s the same post-9/11 thing again. The difference being that the protagonist here has Asperger Syndrome. Would it have mattered if he was a plain simple lunatic without a fancy syndrome attached to him? NO.

My Name Is Khan is a pendulum which swings between trying to be a movie about someone with Asperger Syndrome and the effects 9/11 had on Muslims. It excels at neither. If you applauded Amitabh Bachchan for his Progeria act in Paa then you’ll applaud SRK for his Asperger act. It’s definitely not his best performance (as is told to us by all and sundry in the mainstream media) nor is it enough to draw you back to the movie one more time.

Thanks to the publicity stunts and the first weekend booking collections, My Name Is Khan will be declared a superhit. It might break all erstwhile records, but I’m dead sure that most people will label it as an ordinary flick. By the way, it gave my dad a headache; he used the choicest cuss words for SRK’s ‘irritating act’.

Sometime back, I had tweeted that Bollywood spends more time on publicizing the movie then on crafting it. The same holds true for My Name Is Khan. Don’t even think of arguing against this review if you belong to the masses, and if you’re someone from the classes then don’t go for the movie if you already haven’t. Mediocrity has been shoved down our throats more often than not, the masses accept it because they’re used to it by now, I’ll just spit it out right here.

My Rating: 2 stars, both for Kajol who is the only redeeming factor of My Name Is Khan and lights up the screen with her presence.


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