The world is full of such people who will watch a masala movie and will lambast it for the shortcomings it had in terms of cinematic value as if they were expecting one ‘Bicycle Thieves’ or one’ Pather Panchali’. They do the same when they watch ‘Nebraska’ or ‘The Whale’ and feel disappointed as those don’t provide them action scenes like the DC or Marvel movies. Having the right set of expectations is what differentiates a wise man from a fool. So, when I had booked the tickets of ‘Jawan’, I knew very well for what I was spending my hard earned money. I was spending money for a masala flick, I was buying tickets to be outrightly entertained and I was investing my time to see one giant superstar roar on screen – SRK. And, as I write this review, I feel I have received more returns on my investment than the stock markets would have given to its investors. ‘Jawan’ is a perfect blend of every ingredient a typical Indian massy film should have. It has several goosebump moments, it strikes the right strings of your cardiovascular system at the right moments and throughout its 169 minutes of runtime, it does not let you yawn for a single moment. If ‘Pathaan’ was a storm, it is a cyclone.
So what works for ‘Jawan’? Several things. But the two most important areas are its penchant for celebrating the spirit of womanhood throughout it’s journey and it’s predispositions towards highlighting social issues this country is infested with. But not for a single moment, it tends to become preachy. And there lies the craftsmanship of Atlee in making wholesome entertainment potboilers with right doses of emotion, actions, thrills and patriotism. The way girls have been portrayed in the movie is a reflection of SRK’s amazing bonding with his female co-workers. His respect for the women is what differentiates him from many other superstars and that respect is visible throughout the movie. The highest point of the movie is a monologue by the protagonist about the electioneering system of this nation. It moves you, it makes you think, it gives goosebumps and the whole cinema hall erupts into frenzied applause for the man. There are at least a dozen moments where the cinema hall turns into a stadium. Such is the magnitude of clapping, whistles and ovations. SRK as always delivers his part ( or parts?) with signature suave and swag. He makes several points with this movie. In ‘Pathaan’, he was mellowed. He was vulnerable. He was visibly desperate for success. But now he has already regained his kingdom. He looks fabulous. He is confident. And he makes several points clearly aimed at those who once tried to ruin him. The powerful combo of SRK and Atlee is what we have been asking for as his fans. In some of his earlier movies like ‘Zero’ or ‘JHMS’, it looked like he tried to influence his directors. But here he is an outright actor, an entertainer, a superstar who has bonded so well with his director. And the chemistry is visible throughout.
Nayanthara is cool and has much screenspace unlike many other entertainers where women are meant for just romancing and dancing. Vijay Sethupathy is menacing as the antagonist. Deepika Padukone in her brilliant cameo is as always a class of her own. Priyamani, Sanya Malhotra, Riddhi Dogra and others do justice to their roles. The BGM by Aniruddh is what grips you from the onset and lofts the standard of the movie. Choreography in ‘Zinda Bandaa’ is fabulous. Editing is topnotch and as I have already mentioned, there is not a single dull moment. The Father-Son chemistry is the heart of this movie and it reminds you of so many real life events. Dialogues like’ Mufasa- Simba’ ‘Baap- Beta’ or election related monologue are cleverly written and points at something and will make the audience roar in joy.
Low points? Yes, there are. The role of Nayanthara was somewhere lost towards the end. The background stories of all the girls are not told and that makes it difficult for you to connect with them emotionally. The climax does not match the level of the pre-interval sequence. One or two songs could have been skipped.
Undoubtedly, this is one of SRK’ most entertaining movies and perhaps the best in the last one decade. Watch it for SRK, watch it to experience how a King runs his kingdom after regaining it, watch it for its social values, watch it for Atlee and watch it to be entertained.
I am surely watching it again. Are you?
My rating – Commercially 9 Critically 7.5
If you want to watch my review , please check the videos posted below