And now I realize why the Shiv Sena supremo Balasaheb Thackeray made such a big fuss about the movie. Trust me, it was not political! It was just that he knew that the movie was not worth the time and money normal people like us could afford. And how we misunderstood the great man! And now for the ‘joie de vivre’ known as My Name is Khan.
The movie starts with SRK at the SFO airport bumbling something at the security when he is supposedly ‘racially profiled’ and taken for in depth screening. Now, if I, or for that matter anyone find people talking and babbling nonsense in the security at the airport, we would be concerned. Then the movie goes into flashback mode where Zarina Wahab is the widowed mother of young SRK and his brother. Undergoing the trials and tribulations of poverty, she is responsible for the simple yet humble upbringing of SRK who hams away saying that the world has only 2 kinds of people ‘good ones and bad ones’. SRKs neglected and jealous brother Jimmy Shergill immigrates to USA and married a kind hearted soul. Once settled he files for his mom and SRK to join him in US. However, before she can join her son, Zarina Wahab saves herself some headache and passes away! So it leaves SRK to travel to America to stay with his brother and sister in law. Now, just a sidetrack, why would Jimmy Shergill, who got a scholarship from Michigan University, become an herbal beauty products salesman??? Beats me! However, getting back to the story, SRK becomes a salesman for the products where he meets Kajol who is a single mom and after about 30 minutes of yapping and hamming, he convinces Kajol to marry him. It is a ‘happily ever after’ life for the family until 9/11 when people start seeing the family in a different light just because their last name is ‘Khan’ and what follows ahead is the gist of the movie. Their son is killed by some school bullies who assume that just because his father is a ‘Khan’, he automatically becomes a terrorist. After his death, Kajol blames SRK for her son’s death and asks him to meet the president and tell him ‘My name is Khan and I am not a terrorist’. And this leads to SRK on his travails all around the country to meet the prez.
Now for my two cents on performances. SRK is his usual hamming self. I would love to just question him once: Does he not get tired of hamming so much! I read a review in Times of India by Nikhat Kazmi where a comment has been made that SRK in MNIK is better than Tom Hanks in Forrest Gump. Now, this is a bloody bold statement to make and I bet that Kazmi has either not seen Forrest Gump or he was paid off by SRK and Karan Johar. Kajol is restrained and good as usual. I don’t even know why Jimmy Shergill was in the movie! Maybe just a reason to show why SRK made his way to USA from Borivali. Other characters in the movie pretty much played their part. Again, as other Karan Johar movies, this is an out and out SRK epilogue. And that is what the pain point of the whole saga is.
The movie could have been bearable if it would have been a 2 hour thriller. However, it is a Dharma Production and so how can they even think of something which is less that 2hours 45 minutes of torture. I mean what was the whole point of showing the Jenny Mama crap in the movie. That whole episode is about 25 minutes and the movie could have very well done without it. SRK has about 2$ and change in his bank and yet he travels all around USA from California to Kentucky to Georgia to DC to Arizona and back to California. Pretty amazing! And if you Barack Obama had a chance to see the end of the movie, he would definitely hang himself!
I am sure that this artistic piece of whatever it is (definitely not a movie) will be a huge hit in India and abroad alike primarily because of its controversies and a hamming superstar with an awful director at the helm. When we were in the theater, there were people who stood and applauded at the end of the movie. It was a sight which made my heart cry for help. And then I realized that no matter how much crap SRK throws our way, there will be people who will appreciate it just because it is from him. I heard a lady say that Barack Obama at the end of the movie was a metaphor for change and that is what has been depicted in the movie. Well, I would love to understand the metaphor on this. And not only me, but also Karan Johar also love to hear about it because he never thought this way!
And to end, I would like to tweak the punch line of the movie for Karan Johar: “My name is Gaurav and I am not an Idiot”. Please give me my money back.