Salman Khan made his mark in Hindi films as a lover boy image and later slowly ventured into the action and comedy zone. He has had his share of hits and flops till 2005, after which except for 'Partner' none of his films were successful at the box office. His ill luck ended with the massive success of films like 'Wanted' and 'Dabangg'. These films also establish a new image of 'Bhai' and these films were known as the Salman Khan style of entertainers. 'Bodyguard', 'Ready', 'Ek Tha Tiger', 'Kick' and few more films kept making this image more and more stronger. Along with these films, there was a film 'Jai Ho', which had a good message and an emotional angle attached to it. The movie failed to meet up to the expectation level, but, managed to rake in good money due to the star value of the entertainer Khan. Salman's latest film 'Bajrangi Bhaijaan' brings back the ace actor-director combo of Salman Khan & Kabir Khan after the super success of their last venture 'Ek Tha Tiger'. Thus, the expectation level is at its highest level, and looking at the promos of the film, the movie looks like an emotional tale trying to portray a different side of Salman Khan. So, let's find out whether 'Bajrangi Bhaijaan' will establish a new image of the ace entertainer or might end up being another verbose type of film on the lines of 'Jai Ho'.
'Bajrangi Bhaijaan' is a story of a mute Pakistani girl Shahida (Harshaali Malhotra), who came to India with his mother to seek religious blessings. Due to some circumstances, Shahida accidently gets lost and meets Pavan Kumar Chaturvedi (Salman Khan), a simple man with a golden heart. Pavan and his fiancee Rasika (Kareena Kapoor) try to find out about Shahida's whereabouts, and finally come to know that she is from Pakistan. Pavan and Rasika try their level best to send Shahida back to her country but fails miserably. Finally, Pavan decides to do this task on his own and enters Pakistan. What happens next is what the entire film is all about.
The story has slight remembrance of films like 'Henna', 'Rakhwala', 'Veer Zaara', 'Gaddar', 'Ramchand Pakistani' etc. The first half of the film is slow and average, but right from the interval point, the movie starts to rise on upwards mode leading to a dramatically emotional climax. The initial phase of the film will look a bit slow and non entertaining, as one will be watching it as a Salman Khan film and thus will be highly disappointed as 'Bajrangi Bhaijaan' has hardly any stylish dialogues, fight scenes, peppy chartbuster songs or slapstick humour which has been key ingredients of a typical Salman Khan type of films. But, as the movie progresses and once you accept the fact that this is not a typical Salman Khan film, your interest in the film gets stronger and will start to enjoy it as a decent family drama. There are few kiddish scenes like Harshali getting lost, Pakistani rangers allowing Salman Khan to enter their country over an emotional conversation followed by Pakistani officials supporting Salman Khan over the emotional basis and few such type of scenes. These scenes, seek cinematic liberty and lacks the practicality. On the positive part, Salman and Harshaali meet, Harshaali chicken track, Salman at Pakistani embassy, Salman saving Harshaali from brothel, Salman convincing Pakistani Rangers, Salman and Om Puri track, Harshaali's emotional connect followed by the climax part between Salman and Harshaali are highly entertaining and connects with you on the emotional level. Along with these scenes, every scene of Nawazuddin Siddiqui, right from his entry video shoot to him supporting Salman followed by making Salman wear Burkha, fooling the cops, Nawazuddin's video speech, Nawazuddin's farewell to Salman and many more such scenes are amazing. It's due to the brilliant combination of Salman-Harshaali and Nawazuddin the second half of the film is highly gripping and has full conviction factor. The cinematography is of top notch and the movie has been shot on some brilliant locations, making it a visual treat.
The music, in comparison to most of Salman Khan films is a bit lower than its standard. Still 'Selfie', 'Tu Chahiye' and 'Chicken Song' are enjoyable and entertaining. 'Bhar Do Jholi Meri' is superbly placed in the film. 'Tu Jo Mila' and 'Zindagi' goes with the flow of the film.
Director Kabir Khan starts the film on a simple level, where he lowers his sensibilities as a director. But, thanks to the good dramatic screenplay he manages to show his real side in the second half of the film. He dares to make a non Salman Khan style film with Salman Khan in the film and highly succeeds after the initial gloomy phase. The usage of Harshaali's innocent face and honest heart of Salman's character emerges as a winner for this daring attempt. He might mildly disappoint the die-hard Salman fans, but ends up giving a good film with a noble intention making you wish it happens in reality between the neighbouring country.
It's very tough for a superstar actor to break his star image and here, it's the case of Salman Khan, who is highly known for his particular image. Here, in 'Bajrangi Bhaijaan', he breaks his earlier image and moulds himself into this simple character of Pavan. He excels in the comical and emotional scenes. The die hard fans might miss the action and will have to suffice only over those two punches in the film. Kareena Kapoor is fine but has hardly any role to offer. Her track with Salman was the weakest part of the film. One will hardly see her in the second half of the film. Harshaali Malhotra is super cute and charms you with her innocence. Her bonding with Salman looks real and connects with you. Nawazuddin is outstanding. The moment he enters into the film, the movie comes back to its right track. Every scene of his are amazing and emerges as an additional hero in this film. Om Puri and Sharat Saxena are fine in their parts. Alka Badola and Rajesh Sharma are wasted.So bol meri 'Filmi Khopdi' iss film mein kitna hai Dum???
Dum??? Well, the movie lacks a little bit of dum for the die hard Salman Khan mass fans, in terms of action and fun element. But, this movie succeeds in establishing a softer and real image of the ace entertainer, which will be loved by the family audiences. It's a decent emotional drama, presented in an entertaining manner with a good theme attached to it. Thus, making the 'Bhaijaan' (emotional) part, wins over the 'Bhai' image.Ratings - 3.5/5