Salman Khan is one such star who is capable of doing good films but doesn’t come up with one any time. It doesn’t matter if a film collects hundreds of crores without a good plot. Maybe realizing this, he came up with “Bajrangi Bhaijaan”, directed by “Kabir Khan” who made “Newyork” and “Ek Tha Tiger”, co-produced by Salman himself. This film also stars Kareena Kapoor and “Harshaali Malhotra”. The story was written by “V. Vijayendra Prasad”, father of S.S.Rajamouli and also the writer of India’s biggest motion picture “Baahubali”.
A born mute 6 years old Pakistani girl Shahida (Harshaali Malhotra) gets lost from her mother in India. She meets Pavan Kumar Chaturwedi a.k.a Bajrangi (Salman Khan). The rest story is all about how Bajrangi tried to unite Shahida with her family in Pakistan.
Firstly, writer Vijayendra Prasad should be appreciated for sensitive story that discusses about India – Pakistan relationship and different religions and cultures of India, in a non-controversial manner. Next appreciable person is Salman Khan for not only starring in but also producing a film which has much lesser commercial elements when compared to his previous films.
Coming to the screenplay, this film runs for 159 minutes yet the writers and director tried not to make audiences feel bored and managed from going out of main plot. Kabir Khan balanced entertainment and melodrama well throughout the film’s runtime.
The scene where Shahida gets lost from her mother was narrated very well with sufficient amount of melodrama. Keeping in mind the craze of Salman Khan, the song “Selfie Le Le Re” was shot with Salman’s signature choreography, which also introduced Pavan’s character well. Without wasting much time, director entered the main plot again where he introduced Shahida as “Munni” to Pavan.
Indians are such kind of people who love others only after liking their religion and culture rather than loving “them” first. This was criticized well with enough entertainment in the scene where Pavan sees Munni praying in a mosque. Emotion lies above all religions and cultures, which was proved in the scene where Pavan goes back to Munni with her favourite bangles and rescues her from a trouble. These two scenes are the most sensible and touching ones of the first half. The song “Tu Jo Mila” elevated the emotion well. The scene where Pavan knows that Munni is Pakistani, entertained with the cute performance of Harshaali.
The second half was more emotional than that of first half. The scene where Pavan crosses Pakistan’s border was felt exaggerated but Harshaali’s cute expressions made me ignore it. This half turns entertaining with the entry of Chand Nawab (Nawazuddin Siddique), a Pakistani reporter who helps Pavan in his mission. Om Puri’s special appearance as Moulana changed Pavan’s mind to respect all religions equally, in the scene where he says “Jai Sriram” when Pavan refuses to say “Khuda Hafiz”. I felt this is the most adorable scene though it’s a small thing to discuss about.
A special appearance by popular singer “Adnan Sami” in a “Qawwali” was good. Besides this, the performance by Salman Khan in this song was heart touching. Here the film shifted from “Uniting Munni with her mother” to “Uniting India – Pakistan emotions” which changed Pavan to “Bajrangi Bhaijaan”.
The performance of Harshaali in the last scene was very heart-touching and the shot where Pavan says “Khuda Hafiz” to Pakistan teaches to respect other country’s people. Maybe this is the reason that allowed Pakistan Censor Board to accept this film’s release in Pakistan.
Coming to performances, Salman Khan got a chance to prove that he is an “Actor” rather than a “Hero” with this film. Kareena’s performance was as usual and she got a lesser screen presence. A special mention required for “Harshaali Malhotra” who is the heart of the film. Her cute expressions and heart touching performance made the audiences remember her as long as they remember “Bajrangi Bhaijaan”.
1) Story & Narration. The film’s narration didn’t cross the story’s boundaries for any commercial or controversial elements and deserved a special mention for “story” in Salman’s movie, in recent times.
2) Harshaali Malhotra and Salman Khan’s Performances. No need of discussing more, in this section.
3) Aseem Mishra’s Cinematography. I liked the aerial shots of Himalayas at the starting and some sunset shots on Harshaali and Salman walking in the desert.
4) Pritam’s Music. All the songs are nicely composed. I liked “Tu Jo Mila” sung by K.K among all.
1) I felt there is a slight exaggeration in Pavan’s character in the second half which is highly negligible.
What should be learned from Bajrangi Bhaijaan?
Even the most sensitive plots can be narrated in a non-controversial manner.
– Yashwanth Aluru