BizAsia Movie Review: ‘Bajrangi Bhaijaan’

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After the thunderous success of ��Ek Tha Tiger�۪ (2012), director Kabir Khan and superstar Salman Khan have united once again for this year’s Bollywood�۪s latest Eid offering, ��Bajrangi Bhaijaan�۪. Understandably, expectations from this film are quite high and it is expected to do great business at the Box Office owing to Salman�۪s tremendous popularity and the festival of Eid. However, Box Office aside, the question remains whether ��Bajrangi Bhaijaan�۪ can also manage to please the section of the audience who feel movies starring him categorise under a ��mindless maaala entertainment�۪ title.

Bajrangi Bhaijaan poster 340x

The basic plot of the film focuses on six-year-old Shahida (Harshaali Malhotra), a mute girl from Pakistan. Shahida�۪s mother travels to a dargah in India, in hope that God would be able to bless her daughter with a voice. Unfortunately, Shahida is left behind in India on their return to Pakistan. The child soon meets Pavan Kumar Chaturvedi (Salman Khan), also known as Bajrangi. The remainder of the film is Bajrangi�۪s journey in attempting to re-unite Shahida with her family in Pakistan

As with his previous films, director Kabir Khan�۪s early years as a documentary filmmaker can be sensed throughout ��Bajrangi Bhaijaan�۪. While the film does live up to the entertainment value associated with Salman Khan starrers, it also has elements of realism. Kabir Khan leaves no stone unturned in bringing to life the world of Bajrangi and Shahida. The director has handled all scenes with sensitivity and especially excels in emotional scenes. Besides directing the film, Kabir Khan has also written the dialogues, which work wonderfully with the story and screenplay. There are no punchline dialogues which many recent films starring Salman Khan have had; the lines are mostly conversational and realistic.

The filmmaker�۪s work has been complemented beautifully by cinematographer Ravi K. Chandran, who in turn has been aided by shooting at stunning locations, and of course Vijayendra Prasad who has written the story. It can be noted that while the first half of the film has been primarily used to set the basis for the story, much of the progress in the story takes place post-interval. Thus the filmmaker and screenplay writer could have worked a little more on making the pre-interval portions slightly crisper.

When it comes to performances by the actors, there is no doubt that the film belongs to Salman Khan and Malhotra. Khan has delivered one of his career�۪s finest performances and the innocence with which he portrays his character reminds one of his initial years in the film industry. The character of Bajrangi is a pleasant surprise and welcoming change for fans of Salman Khan, as the actor has more often than not been seen in larger-than-life hero roles recently. Khan performs his role with utmost sincerity and sensitivity and his chemistry with child-actor Malhotra is incredibly heart-warming. The final scene of the film is undoubtedly one of the best performed scenes of Khan�۪s acting career thus far.�� Casting director Mukesh Chhabra has done a commendable job in discovering Malhotra, as the child actor is sure to win hearts of the audience with her warm and natural portrayal of Munni aka Shahida. The young actor lights up the screen and has brilliant screen-presence.�� Nawazuddin Siddiqui delivers a fabulous performance as the Pakistani reporter Chand Nawab. Though one expects nothing but brilliance from an actor of Siddiqui�۪s calibre, he still manages to surprise you with how well he gets into his role and brings his character to life. Kareena Kapoor Khan is seen in an extended cameo and adds a glamour quotient to the film, while also performing very naturally. Other supporting actors, including Om Puri and Sharat Saxena, also do a brilliant job.�� All in all, the performances are definitely a highlight in the film.

Kareena Kapoor Khan Bajrangi Bhaijaan 2 340x

Salman has always been known to pay particular attention to the songs in his movies and with ��Bajrangi Bhaijaan�۪ being produced under the actor�۪s own banner, there were high expectations from the music.�� Composed by Pritam, the soundtrack failed to live up to expectations and arguably there is no particular stand-out song which will be remembered for years to come.�� However, the soundtrack is still apt for the film and goes well with the screenplay, with the songs taking the story forward.�� There are some lovely songs on the album, including Bhar Do Joli Meri which is a soulful number, the catchy Selfie Lele Re and both Zindagi Kuch Toh Bata and Tu Mila which are soothing.

��Bajrangi Bhaijaan�۪ is not only the perfect crowd-pleasing entertainer for this festive time but also a beautiful story, which has been conceptualised and executed wonderfully and sells a message of oneness and unity.�� The film will surely be remembered as one of the finest films in both Kabir Khan and Salman Khan�۪s filmographies.�� Though the film deals with an Indo-Pak storyline, the concept has been treated in a unique way, which has never before been seen in Bollywood.�� With the perfect blend of emotions, action and comedy, ��Bajrangi Bhaijaan�۪ is a must-watch.

BizAsia Showbiz Rating: 4/5

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