Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Review : Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi

There is a sense of irony with Shahrukh Khan. You, as a director, can't let Shahrukh Khan be "Shahrukh Khan" if you want to extract performance from him. "Shahrukh Khan" can be all mushy. He can sulk for the whole movie if you want him to. He can flow through the role easily. and that's the Shahrukh people flood the theatres to watch, but that's the "Shahrukh" we are tired of watching, because practically there is no difference between Raj of DDLJ, Rahul of Dil to Pagal hai or Aman of Kal Ho Naa Ho. On the other hand, if you are adept at it, you can get Mohan Bhargava (Swades) or Amjad Ali Khan(Hey Ram) out of him, but with the exception of Chak De India that doesn't go to well with boxoffice. So Aditya Chopra, after 8 long years of deliberation, probably decided to have his cake and eat it too.

Surinder(Shahrukh Khan) is your typical first-bench-sitting, specs-wearing, dull topper, who is now working Punjab Power. You can't help but smirk when he picks up the phone to greet "Punjab Power. Lighting up your lives" where as a matter of fact, he himself could do with some light up himself or how suitable the headline of the newspaper "Living in the fear" applies to him. He knows affection for sure, but does not know what love is as he has not even talked to any "ladies" in his life. He works hard to make life easy for his reluctant wife Taani, who has been through series of accidents in no time. You feel for Surinder or Suri's sincerity and honesty, even his little gestures of affection. He is the underdog you want to win, but that's clearly not what his wife desires.

Enter Raj. He is combination of all the previous Shahrukh Khans you have seen in your life what with "Raj... naam to suna hoga" and all those hand-swooshing gestures. He is someone who is meant to sweep-the-girl-off-her-feet, but you fail to understand whether he is himself or parody of himself. As the movie unfolds, I found myself asking the same question which the little annoying girl next to me kept asking to her parents through out the movie, "kya ho gaya?" and by the end of the movie, you, as audience, have lost the sense of the purpose, you no longer know what you actually want to happen with mess that has been created or rather you no longer care. As most of the characters in the movie do, you leave rest of the things to the Rab(God) to solve.

You fail to go along with the character of Shahrukh Khan. He begins with good intension of just making her happy, but it's incomprehensible as to how he expects Taani to love her husband when in fact Raj is doing all the work. Also the ease with which Suri fits into the character of Raj leaves you wondering what would be the befitting word? Schizophrenic or alter-ego or masochistic? Parodying themselves seems to be the flavour of the season for YRF and SRK. First Om Shanti Om, then Dostana, now this. Sure it's funny when Raj hums the tune of Dhoom or Taani does a John Abraham, but they are on the verge of overdoing it. Although to the credit of Aditya Chopra no hariyale khet, sarson da saag, makke di roti for this one. Thanks for that!!

Shahrukh Khan proves he is, for good or for bad, as the cliche goes, "director's actor". Otherwise how do you explain a perfectly restrained and lovable portrayal of Surinder and at the same time straight-from-previous-movies, annoying, repetitive portrayal of Raj in the same movie? Anushka Sharma almost fits the mould of a YRF heroine. Vinay Pathak as Bobby Khosla is decent as over-the-top-fashion sidekick of Suri.

If this is what Aditya Chopra came out of exile for after eight years, he better go back to it again.

8 comments:

webmaster said...

i agree pretty much to what you have said (and does not agree to parts, i didn't read). I can understand people will have mix opinions about the movie. speaking of which, aditya chopra came back after 8 years, industry trends changed between ddlj and rbdj. I would say, he just tried to go with flow, placed all the masala stuff in it and hoped wide range of people will like it (many times its the co producers and actors who recommend such crazy ideas). for few of us, who expected aditya chopra to make movie more sensibly will be disappointed for sure. i hope now aditya knows what people expect from him.

Dr.Devesh.M said...

Hello Nishit
I think you should be writing in a magazine or news papers.
So perfect ,more than Amir khan.
DEVESH DESAI

spatel said...

honestly .... this is the best review of RNBDJ i found online thus far!! And i have read plenty.... searching for one that reflected how i felt.

I was so annoyed by the character of raj, i really wanted to shake someone and ask "do you really not see how ridiculous this looks?? It's embarrassing!!"
But i realize i feel this way because i know what SRK is capable of, and i know there is a great actor behind his star image. BUT there is no money in that... so why try!

And yeah this movie is making money and therefore there will be more and more of this in the future .... so sad!!

spatel said...

will you be reviewing Ghajini for us as well? Have you seen Memento?

shuz said...

after some time i was wondering wt did this guy want!! it was probably the worst movie iv seen this year! Is SRK and good roles a passe?

Mansi said...

I felt the exact same way when you said we fail to understand if SRK is being himself or a parody of himself. I think this was not a SRK movie...not meant for him.

Thanks for visiting my blog!

shahrukh123 said...

Hi,
I am Shahrukh Khan, the king of Bollywood.
Catch me on http://www.shahrukhkhan.eu for lates movie and video.

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anshuj said...

Umm...I beg to differ...Your analysis of Suri is spot on, but Raj? Thats a different story altogether.
I never for a moment thought Raj to be the equivalent of his DDLJ, DTPH or any other earlier counterparts. He was meant to be ill-at-ease and he looked so. The real Raj would carry all his cheesy, corny dialogues with an elan, he would sweep a lady off her feet with just the action replay of his earlier movie. I never got that feeling in this one. In fact, I even wondered if he could ever make Taani fall in love with him, as was supposed to happen. However, the movie does rationalizes that Taani is so fed up with her sacrificial husband that she's willing to take up whatever comes her way...a lame argument if you ask me. But this is Bollywood anyway..
So NO! Raj in RNBDJ was nowhere close to the Raj in DDLJ. I admire Shahrukh's acting prowess to look uncomfortable in a role which comes naturally to him, rather which is his forte. But then, as you say, he is a director's actor.
Although the movie overall wasn't very impressive, but I feel it was more because of a lame script than Shahrukh. To me, the movie didn't answer the questions it raised, What did Taani actually see in Raj? And how did the gratitude which was suffocating her earlier made her fall in love with Suri? Suppose Suri wasn't Raj, then wasn't Taani doomed to live her life being eternally grateful towards her husband, who in turn was eternally grateful for her presence in his life?