Bajrangi Bhaijaan: An Indo-Pak CBM

Bajrangi Bhaijaan is a breakthrough project in the Salman Cinemascape as it is a rare feat that a film that stars Salman Bhaijaan has minimal action sequences and is more an emotional experience regarding separation and inter-faith understanding. Leaves a tear at the corner of your eye with all the emotional bombardment on the senses with separation plot of a speech impaired girl (the talented Harshaali) who is super adorable like a doll.. This film is probably the most thoughtful film of Salman, after ‘My Brother Nikhil’ which was a cool decade back.  The film tackles deftly the xenophobic anti minority bent of the Sangh, the snobbish mentality of the upper caste Hindus towards non vegetarian fare and shows the humanity which often gets clouded by the veneer of religious dogma. Also, shows Sufism as a common ground between India and Pakistan.  Well done, Mr V Vijendra Prasad and Kabir Khan; the conceptualisers  of this rather off beat, yet mainstream story. With a dramatic ending, across the LoC in Kashmir, with the speech of the little girl being restored miraculously, the film carries a strong people to people message.

Pavan is the new ‘Prem’ of Salman now. after this performance. Salman’s fan following will bulge especially among a family audience. Nawazuddin Siddiqui again delivers a stellar performance redeming the film as the activist Sindhi Reporter who brings in the media angle by publicising the Bajrangi affair. The second half is a critic’s delight, while the first half was a Salman Khan Fan boy/girl video in the words of a dear friend. Bhaijaan delivers a clear break from a Kick, Ready and a Wanted; his popular fare mainly meant for a hardcore Bollywood Audience.

The cinematic treatment of Kabir Khan is macro, placing a human story in a geopolitical narrative. The India Pakistan theme continues from the last Salman starrer with Kabir, the uber successful ‘Ek Tha Tiger’ which I saw in a theatre in Vashi, Navi Mumbai twice. The biggest Confidence Building Measure India Pak Relations can get. Truly a ‘Being Human’ affair.  Narendra Bhai should watch this film with Nawaz Miyaan in their next meeting. 

Art has a unique ability to inspire hope and look beyond the prejudices of reality. Bajrangi Bhaijaan offers some hope in spreading Love and Understanding.


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