��Fan�۪ has to be one of the most hyped films of the year with King Khan Shah Rukh Khan making his debut on the big screen for 2016. The promos for this film have been relentless, keeping the audience guessing on the film�۪s storyline and promising a fresh take on the infamous double role in a Bollywood film. The trailer for this film showed Khan take on the persona of Gaurav, an obsessive fan who was following around superstar Aryan Khan, also played by Khan. The film�۪s only song Jabra Fan��was a smash hit on release and had not left the radio waves since its unveiling. When BizAsia met Khan at the press conference for ��Fan�۪, he admitted that the whole film was a ��schizophrenic�۪ experience for him and that it will leave the audience desperate for more.
The film begins on the streets of Delhi, where Gaurav Chandna (Khan) is a 25-year-old who runs an internet caf̩ and is a die hard fan of superstar Aryan Khan (Khan). He is obsessed to the point where he impersonates Aryan at the local talent show and wins the top prize each year. This time around Gaurav swears that he will use his prize money to go to Mumbai to wish Aryan Happy Birthday and give him his trophy. He heads to Mumbai, following the footsteps of his superstar and travels to the city without a train ticket and stays in the same hotel Aryan did and in the same room. However when he arrives at Aryan�۪s mansion, Gaurav realises that he is just one of many fans of Aryan and the possibility of meeting is practically impossible. This is when Gaurav hatches a plan to get Aryan�۪s attention and make sure he get his five minutes.
This film tries to answer the age-old question ��� Does the fan make the star or vice versa? Gaurav�۪s character is written with affection and his love for Aryan, though obsessive, is rather childlike where he is just trying to meet the star who he has admired from afar. It is easy for every fan in the audience who has ever been a fan of Khan, to find aspects of themselves in Gaurav�۪s character and that is why he comes across so appealing.
After a couple of commercial films such as ��Happy New Year�۪ (2014) and ��Dilwale�۪ (2015), Khan is back at his best in this double role. He carries the character of Gaurav with so much integrity and detail that it is hard to believe that Khan is under the prosthetic mask. Every action, movement and language nuance have been developed incredibly well and you can see the hard work the team of ��Fan�۪ has put in to ensure that the visual effects live up to the film. Aryan is the film persona of Khan in real life yet he comes across flawed himself. When Aryan tries to do the right thing by the end of the film, he realises that it is just too late.
What makes this film really fall down is its storyline. The concept is brilliant and well thought through. Only a big star like Khan could carry off a double role to this extent with such ease and finesse and his acting experience literally irradiates off the screen. The story, however, is much the opposite. It has too many loopholes and it does leave you wishing that Aryan�۪s character was as well thought out. It is hard to humanise Aryan who is superstar yet his search for Gaurav is put purely down to him wanting to clear his name, rather than wanting to do the right thing.
Director Maneesh Sharma is harping back his ��Baazigar�۪ (1993) and ��Darr�۪ (1993) days with Khan showing off his famous scenes. However he forgets that Khan does have a difficult time playing the superstar and the nobody fan. It is a brave move to have a film entirely songless with two main characters played by just one actor but the film is well paced and keeps the audience engaged throughout.
Overall, ��Fan�۪ delivers what the trailers promised and you do leave the cinema with some food for thought. Khan is back on top form and he shows off what years of experience can bring to such a different Bollywood film. There is indeed a worthwhile triumph in just that.
BizAsia Showbiz rating: 3/5