14 Apr 2016 ● Hindi ● 2 hrs 22 mins
Rating: U/A (India)
Release Dates: 15 Apr 2016 (India), 15 Apr 2016 (Malaysia), 15 Apr 2016 (Singapore), 14 Apr 2016 (United Arab Emirates)
Tagline: Duniya Ka Sabse Bada Superstar Ka Sabse Bada Fan.
Hindi Name: फैन
Deewana, released in the early 90s seemed to be one of those crappy movies, featuring an overweight Rishi Kapoor (usually in gaudy sweaters to hide his protruding belly) romancing heroines half his age. It was rendered immensely watchable by a television actor who had decided to foray into the big screen to overcome the grief of his mother’s untimely death. Though in a supporting role, this Delhi lad managed to steal the thunder from the lead actors and made the critics sit back and take notice. In spite of his next few movies faring dismally at the box office, he was brave enough to sign Baazigar that would have resulted in a promising career cut short by a stupid choice of a role rejected by many leading actors of that time. The rest as we all know is history. The charisma that he exuded on screen (not to forget his maniacal laugh) made us root for all his anti-hero and negative characters in movies like Darr, Anjam and Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa. The reigning anti - hero was then given a complete makeover in DDLJ and the movies that followed rechristened him as the king of romance. In the early years of the millennium, when critics raised questions on his acting range, he magnificently underplayed his role in Swades (probably his best ever) and silenced all of them. When questions were again raised on his repertoire, Chak De India showcased oodles of untapped potential within King Khan. But then that was nearly a decade ago.
In the years gone by he has managed to remain in the news even with fewer releases , thanks to his bitter sweet relationship with his long- time friends turned foes turned friends , spat with a security guard at Wankhede and to top it all some really stupid career choices. (Not to forget his comments on intolerance which threatened to cause a major dent in his fan following). While trashy stuff like Chennai Express and Happy New Year managed to rake in the moolah , it also questioned the sensibility of the Indian audiences . Fortunately the cold reception which the unwatchable Dilwale received proved that we aren’t dumb to be carried away by the promise of King Khan uniting with his favourite co star after a gap of 5 years. Critics rip him apart yet again. They feel his mid- life crisis just doesn’t seem to end. The average movie goer hopes SRK turns more astute in his career choices. And then comes FAN.
FAN directed by Maneesh Sharma had generated a lot of buzz much before its release because it had Shah Rukh in a dual role, one as the superstar Aryan Khanna and the other, his crazy fan Gaurav . One, who is adored by millions, but is insecure because of increasing competition and the other who is the undisputed winner of all look alike competitions that his colony organizes, thanks to his unwavering faith and adulation for his idol. Having won yet another of those contests, he dreams of meeting his God. He travels to Mumbai ticketless to meet him, rents room 205 in Delight Hotel as he intends to model himself on the lines of his idol. If Aryan does not even sense his presence while greeting all his fans standing on the terrace of his bungalow, Gaurav calls himself Junior ( Aryan Khan )and celebrates his “Senior’s” birthday alone in the hotel room. When he does manage to grab his attention by assaulting Sid Kapoor, an upcoming arrogant actor who has locked horns with his idol, Aryan has him beaten up and arrested. He finally gets to meet Aryan in the lockup, but his excitement turns to shock when the latter tells him that he is not worthy of being his fan as he has resorted to crime and is asked to return home. Gaurav though shattered, has taken upon himself to prove that Aryan is nothing without his die- hard fan. A tale of retribution begins.
With FAN , Shah Rukh proves that he is still a force to reckon with. Thanks to his prosthetics coupled with a brilliant performance as Gaurav, we tend to believe that we are actually watching a crazy fan on the big screen and not the superstar himself. Its hard to imagine anyone else portraying such a complicated role with utmost conviction. SRK as superstar Aryan Khanna seems to be a persona of his usual self and gives us the impression that what we see on reel is what he might probably be experiencing in his real life.
After a promising first half, what pulls the movie down is an unimpressive second half when the director takes the route to escapism with chase sequences shot in foreign locales and gravity defying action sequences which deprive the story of the much needed credibility. Had more attention been paid to the plot, the movie would have been nothing short of a masterpiece. We also wish the editing had not been so shoddy after all.
All these flaws , notwithstanding, FAN is still an engaging watch, thanks to King Khan’s exuberant performance as Gaurav which is sure to win hearts. This can also be termed a a comeback of sorts for Baadshah and lets hope that his career choices in the years to follow do not disappoint his fans.
For the first time in years, we are impressed. King Khan, take a bow!