***Yellow Yellow… Dirty Fellow***
Amongst other rhyming lines that Shah Rukh Khan’s Rizvan Khan [ K..khan...from the epiglotis] speaks at important moments across the film, is the one cited above. He is a guy suffering from a certain form of autism, born in Bombay and who goes ahead to marry a single mother – Mandira Rathod [Kajol ]. The fairy-tale continues until Al-Qaida strikes the twin towers, and as Rizvan’s voice-over tells us – world history gets divided into BC, AD and 9/11. Now, Bollywood has churned out some similar half-baked shit in the last couple of months or so. The brown bread entertainer – New York and the crazy accent carrying Om Puri and Kirron Kher love extravaganza – Kurbaan. Oh noes, Kurbaan was supposed to be the movie with the Kareena backless scene. Sorry KJo, I can’t still get over with that funny accent of Kirron Mata. My Name Is Khan tries to get it right from the scratch. It builds up to it, with a perfect setting, a perfect background and then just goes mental. Completely ballistic in a very wrong way. It felt like KJo started this movie as he said – “I was fed up with Bollywood“. By that he meant, he was fed up with the same song-dance routine, the same high ceilings with polished Swarovski crystal chandeliers, Sharmishta Roy art-direction and Manish Malhotra assisting him in styling. And oh, the Sagai, Shaadi, Post Shaadi, Karva Chauth routine. Yes, KJo did seem a bit grown up. But I think he missed his own daal-roti so much, and hence, goes back to the old as the hills formula – It’s all about loving your parents/ family /neighbour . And he does it while he chews upon as much cheese as the Swiss can manufacture in a year, with as many stereotypical references as possible.
I have some major problems with the movie which makes me question what the likes of Mahapurush – Taran Adarsh jee and Divya Naari – Nikhat Kazmi could see in it to rate it 4.5 star out of 5 and 5 on 5 respectively. But before I dive deeply into the problems, lemme scrape out the good stuff for ya!!
Kajol…Main Sadke Java…!!
Even with a close up of her eyes, with the emerging signs of ageing, there is no doubt about her beauty, screen presence and her awesomeness as a whole. She can do the Bhangra, to the “Mere Aankho ka Taara, Mere Budhhaape ka Sahara” and even make me believe that she’s at heart a bit of a geek. Oh c’mon, didn’t you notice? She quotes Einstein, she bloody knows quite a lot about SF and definitely about the trams being introduced in 1873 in SF and in Kolkata. Geeks #ftw!!!
And above all, she’s the coolest mother one could ask for. She defines Yummy Mummy.
It’s been ages since we saw her. Now with her hubby Aditya Pancholi making a scarfaced comeback in Striker, we can only expect good things from her as well. And she doesn’t disappoint us a bit. Big thanks to the casting team for not taking in the other Dharma favorites – Kirron Kher of Maa Da Ladla fame, Sexy Granny Farida Jalal and lastly Rifat Bee – Himani Shivpuri. I can’t really vocalise why I remember her performance so much. Was it her effortless portrayal of a mother’s undying love for her special son? Was it the spark in her eye which gleams as soon as she starts talking about her Rizzu? Or was it simply her motherly advice which comprises of a simple lesson – There are only two types of people in this world – Good and Bad. I think it was all of it. [ I had a bit of a Krantiveer flashback when I saw the - Hindu Kaun, Musalmaan Kaun ]
Now with the long list of my problem with the movie.
It is bloody Stereotypical.
WHYYYYY??? KAIKOOO!!! [ I wish I could do a Naseeruddin Shah impression while asking this question ] WHYYYY??
The premise is serious stuff. The environment that envelopes this movie is damn serious. Then why layer it with all sorts of bloody non-sense stereotypes. Vinay Pathak as Jitesh, the Gujju Motel owner. You see what I am talking about? Yeah, it does not end there.
The whole SRK = God , I mean Mr. Know-It-All, being a cross between John ‘Beautiful Mind’ Nash and Forrest fucking Gump gives me the allergies. He repairs everything. He is miles ahead of Rancho you see. From pressure cooker to automobiles, he can fix ‘em in a chutki. He is a walking encyclopedia and blurts out the history of the bloodline of his Parsi teacher Mr.Wadia. We get it…he’s a bloody genius. Or as Ammee sez: “Bada Tez hai mera Rizzu”. He can’t make a pressure controlled suction pump from a vacuum cleaner, but yes, he can definitely pump out water using a connecting rod, a cycle and some spare pipes. We fucking get it – he is a bloody genius and he’s definitely growing up to become like Sharukh Khan.
In a politically correct world, where we tend to be extra careful about what we say about disability and stuff, I say fuck it. I didn’t like Black. Yes, I’ll say that again. It was a scream fest for me. Big B and Rani and a kid who should never be left in a dark room, all pulling hair, exclaiming at the highest hormonal level possible. SRK’s portrayal of an autistic guy leaves me lukewarm. He neither manages to charm me with his smartness or geeky nature, nor does he make it compelling enough to make me sympathise with him. And definitely not laugh with him at how he sees life. There are lines built into the script which tries hard to show the Forrest Gump in Rizvan; lines like -
Aao Rizvan, Apna Hi Ghar Samjho… Kaise Samjhu, Jab Mera Ghar Nahi hai to..
Log Kehte Kuch Aur Hai, Sochte Kuch aur hai..
[Translation: Welcome Rizvan, Think it as your own house... How should I think so, when it is not mine..
People are strange; they say something, and think of something else]
But these are far too less to bring out the charm in Rizvan’s character.
And seriously, KJO cannot let go his cheese. In a very Forrest Gump-ish fashion, Rizvan sets out on his journey to meet the POTUS [ President of the US]. This takes him from SF to New Mexico to Georgia, where he meets Mama Jenny and her son – Funny Hair Joe.
Stereotype 2 - what the fuck is this era? Georgia seems like a small town set during the Goldrush. Mama Jenny is an all loving, hugging, cooking, church going Mama. And lil Joe – he’ll grow up to be an R&B legend. You hear that Blues in the background, and his fucking’ lungs belting falsetto on “We Shall Overcome”. Man he was good!! He even overcame SRK’s rendition of Hum Honge Kamyaab. Lil Joe is meant to go to American Idol when he turns 16. And wtf was SRK doing, I mean Rizvan Khan doing? Addressing an English-speaking crowd on a Sunday church gathering in Hindi. Yeah that makes complete Khan-sense!!
Stereotype 3 - SRK steps into a University Islamic social gathering for his regular Namaaz, and he quite conveniently finds Dr. Faisal Rahman preaching the message of Allah. Kill me.. Kill me NOW. And then, SRK in his Rizvan-Avatar gives the Sattar minute-version of MNIK. Dude, wo Shaitaan Tha. Huaahahahahaha!!! You’re so pwned. You know what is more lame than that? Rizvan’s brother reporting live on PBC News about Faisal Rahman, so bloody easily.
Stereotype 4 - Hackers are fat, bearded anti-social, caffeine-junkies living in a dark dorm, but still connected with their Gujju roots. Gimme a break!!
Stereotype 5 - Every detained person in the US has to go through freezing conditions and is then subjected to hot temperature. And you know what, that search scene in the movie’s inital 5 minutes, why did it remind me of a similar real-life incident which happened with a dude who looked exactly like Rizwan. His name was also Khan.
One of the biggest blunders I think was the overambitious nature of the movie. It sets out being a story about a man meeting the POTUS to give a message. And it wanders off to becoming a humanitarian film about Saving the Hurricane struck people on the Southern Coast. And wtf ? SRK = GOD again. Where no US troops and rescue missions; even where Brangelina and Bono can’t reach, SRK and his chamche from PBC and Bhaijaan and Bhabijaan help rescue the peeps. With cameos from every possible Indian News channel reporters including Barkha Dutt speaking in Hindi, what was up with that? And please do not get me started with the two President dummies.
I can just go on and on with this. Stuff like SRK being a naughty peeping tom recording on a handycam, flashing Reebok shoes, transforming from a person with intimacy issues to a Sex Guru by just reading a Dummies book and of course scheduling his sexy time [say that once more..Sexy Time in a Borat voice]. And you know what, I did not dislike the movie as much when I started this post. But now having written so much about what bugged me, I think I dislike it more, and then some more.
You know KJo, there are two types of movies – Good movies which are Good. Bad movies – which are Bad. MNIK swings more towards being Bad, but who the fuck cares. It’s already bringing in the moola innit!