The King And I

[Long Post]

I had gone to see teenage-wet-dream Divya Bharati and hiding-fat-by-wearing-sweater Rishi Kapoor movie “Deewana” the very day it was released, little knowing my life was going to be changed. It was then, just like how Moses saw God behind a burning bush when he least expected Him, that I saw a similarly magnificent vision, sliding on a block of ice, singing “Koi na koi chahiye pyar karne waala”. I had seen him before in “In Which Annie Gives It Those Ones” but there I did not know it was him, his performance being overshadowed by an attractive lady, playing the architecture student in a hat, a lady who would since go on to be a God of Big Size Things in a different domain. After an intense hand-throwing performance with a curious propensity to curl his lip and make his eyes red, something I had never seen before and which at that time made me go “Wow aisi deewangi dekhi naheen kaheen”, this man slowly started vanishing into the woodwork of Bollywood, like Avinash Wadhavan and Ayub Khan, sometimes being seen driving Nagma on bicycle (King Uncle), dancing behind Divya Bharati as she worked it in a delectable black top (Dil Aashna Hai), being whispered about in the men’s room for “that” scene in Maya Memsaheb or playing second fiddle to Nana Patekar as the loveria-afflicted hero in “Raju Ban Gaya Gentleman”, a movie conjectured to have inspired the growth of Satyam under Ramalinga Raju and also the “taali bajao” theme song of those who walk the middle path— “Aaee Raju Chal Aaja Re Baaju” [Video]

And then he rose from the dying. Having gone to see a low-buzz movie called “Baazigar” only to enjoy Anu Malik’s signature “Main milee tu mila duniya jaale to jaale” vocal riff (which I still worship), I was blown away. From that iconic “Madaannnn Chopprraaaaaa” supremely bloody male-male penetration (even today that scene lingers with me, for instance when I saw “Dil Bole Hadippa” the other day I had this urge to shake my lip, yell “Adityaaaa Chopprraaaa” and run into a high-tension wire) to the historic Knight Riders-throws -down-Rajasthan Royals from the top of the building (a scene that totally caught me by surprise, in a way the ending of “Usual Suspects” did) to the naughty “zip up” move on the heroine’s behind to the scene of Shahrukh Khan in a towel playing tennis and jumping into a pool (a scene that electrified, I have been told, more people than Kajol’s towel dance in DDLJ). “Baazigar” was simply history. The launch of something epic.

Desiring more of this man, I went first-day first-show to Priya cinema hall to see “Darr”. That day for some strange reason the Kolkata chapter of the Sunny Deol fan club had booked tickets en masse (all dressed in bandanas like Sunny Deol in the movie) and as luck would have it, my seat fell right in front of them. And throughout the length of the movie, these maniacs kept screaming “Sunny tor baap” “Juhi tor maa” (Sunny is your dad, Juhi is your mom) whenever the love-obsessed anti-hero would slant his head, slit his red eyes and quiver his lips. Thanks to these inconsiderate fans, I could not fully appreciate “Jadoo Teri Nazaar” which would go onto become the anthem of frustrated stalkers as every Romeo from Khardah to Kankurganchi went K-k-kiran at bus-stops nor could I wrap my mind around the superhuman feat wherein Sunny Deol starts chasing the anti-hero from the mountains of presumably Switzerland right to the beach.

With my Higher Secondary exams over and reeling under a disastrous Joint Entrance Exam, I went to see “Anjaam”.  I came out shaken (one of my friends said “The Higher Secondary exams were better than this movie”) unable to decide which was more terrifying—–Madhuri Dixit’s stuffing money down throats, eating human beings or Dipak Tijori as the hero. What however I am sure about is there was more blood spilt in “Anjaam” than all the blood spilt in the seven Saw movies. No two ways about it.

Karan Arjun came and went—primarily a two hero flick with the star turn being provided by Rakhee with her maniacal “Mere bete Karan Arjun aayenge. Dharti cheed ke ayenge. Aasman todke aayenge”.  So did “Kabhi Haan Kabhi Na”, making not much of an effect at the box office, despite an endearing (some would say his best along with Swades) performance as a golden-hearted loser and one awesome awesome musical score including my personal favorite “Kab se kare hai tera intezaar”.

And then it happened. Possibly his greatest triumph. “Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge” —a movie that rewrote Indian movie history. Fresh in college and suffused with the lovey-doveys, I swooned. As did an entire generation. Na Jaane Mere Dil Ko Kya Ho Gya. Abhi To Yaheen Tha Abhi Kho Gya. Soon everyone was standing at bus stops, swinging their head sideways, imagining an SRK dimple on their cheeks as they sang to their imaginary muses (mere khawabon main jo aaye) hoping that one day, while on the Canning Local squeezed in like sardines between the vegetable vendors and industrious pickpockets, they could stretch out their hand and a Simran would grab it.  Come fall in love.

However DDLJ also killed the man for me. From that time, he became eternally typecast, trapped in the alternate reality of the Chopra-Johars, unwilling to take a risk with his image essentially strait-jacketed playing the “lover boy” . With even the same name. Rahul. Mar gya Rahul. Rahul naam to yaad rahega. A character so infuriatingly real that recently an American terrorist was planning to travel to India to take out a prominent Indian actor identified as “Rahul” [Link].

Which is why I did not like “Yes Boss”. And could barely sit through “Dil To Pagal Hain”, a movie I am sure was commissioned by the military-industrial complex to sell red heart-shaped balloons (remember the song “Chand ne kuch kahaa”). Ditto “Pardes” (Agar Ganga se pyar karna gunha hai…to [goaty bleat] hai…hai…) helmed by Subhash Ghai who brought novelty to the genre by telling people to “rise in love” (in Taal) rather than “fall in love”. The final nail was driven into my devotion for the man when in 1998, the Karan that Rakhee had prophesied in “Karan Arjun” arrived, forging a Big Ears-Noddy duo, the greatest commercial alliance to be seen in Hindi moviedom.  “Kuch Kuch Hota Hain” came into being, bringing into existence the most irritating over-precocious kid ever captured on screen and strengthening the formula that would be the bane of Bollywood till today.

Not that he was still was not making some delectable movies. Like “Ramjaane” which created a cult of white coats and red ribbons around the head in Kolkata and the reciting of poetic lines like “Raat badi choti hai lekin baat bari long ala ala ala long ala long”. Or “English Babu Desi Mem” where…oh who am I kidding….that movie I loved because of Sonali Bendre and “Bharatpur loot gya ui mere amma” and “Abhi abhi solaah baras ki hui”.  Like “Koyla” by far his most intense action movie with some of the most spectacular sequences ever shown in mainstream Bollywood.

My final falling out with the King happened when we went to see “Duplicate”. For one, porn MMS’s had more detailed plots than that one had. If that was not enough, I was sitting beside a guy friend, a friend who worshipped the King so much that he had a bare-chested picture set as his desktop (his retort was “What do you expect? Me to put a picture of Sonali Bendre? What will my parents think?”). As the hero took a bath, I whispered to him “So paisa wasool”? Immediately a slap hit my cheek. It was my friend, in great wrath, lashing out at having his private moment ruined.

That was it for me. Getting slapped in public for him. Yeh thappad ki goonj and all that. The last straw on the camel’s back. Honestly. My faith was finally broken.

Then doing graduate studies in the US, I went to see Asoka with a few friends. My verdict was simple: this movie was the revenge of the Kalinga rajya on Asoka’s legacy for two reasons: the genocide perpetrated on them and the dropping of Debashish Mohanty. Reducing one of the greatest stories of sin and redemption to a princey romance story with Samrata Asoka leaping out of lakes in superslow motion and making underwater love this was one King’s desecration of another. Then there was Mohabbatein, the five love-stories-in-a-movie, with the King playing Kapil Sibal trying to scrap exams so that his wards may make music and make love. Followed by Devdas which we went to see from Stonybrook in a group of about fifty, sitting in front of the Indian theater playing Antakshari (we had arrived two hours in advance) and then entering to find that the Indian proprietor had oversold tickets. Which meant many of us saw the movie sitting on the stairs, as we were blown away by the assault of colors and the “maar daala” overwrought acting. Followed by “Veer Zara” where his acting as an old man was distinguished from that of young man’s by a slight shake of the head and three strands of white hair, though the final scene where he recites “Main quadi no 786” as the Pakistani judge starts clapping was deeply moving, a sentiment captured by an Youtube commenter

thanks are due to you dude, for uploading such kind of ultimate videos…. long after i saw the movie in theater, i recalled the moments when i was literally crying at this very moment.. great? movie, great scene, great moment, great words spoken, great acting by the kingly person, and great work by you to have uploaded it..

There have been many more—of failed marriages with Kings XI owner and of rebirth and of a government employee who is unrecognizable without a mustache— none of which have had a fraction of the impact his dozen “Aiiiiis” in “Army” or one nod of his head in “Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge” had on me. Why— I have often wondered? Is the King no longer as magnificent as he used to be? Or has the King remained the same while I have moved on?

Of late as old age approaches and each day means that I am closer to the end, I contemplate more and more. Was I wrong all along? Is He not the King but God himself? Commentator Rajib thinks so and he has made a very compelling argument in the thread of this post. And he may have a point. When I went to see “Om Shanti Om” in Laurel in a packed theater, the moment He came onto the screen brandishing his six packs, an auntie sitting in front of me screamed “Hai mar jawaan” in what I can only explain as religious rapture. Not only she but also an uncle cried out “Ohhhhhh” in a way that was distinctly orgasmic.

Yes it make sense. After all in Veer Zara does he not sing “Main Yahaan Ho Yahaan Ho Yahaan” thus informing us of his presence in everything—-T20 franchises, calling card advertisements, wedding party dances, Bollywood nights, game shows, press conferences, in cricket stadiums handing out CDS of his latest movies? Is this not the ultimate proof of his divinity?

Recently He turned forty-four. On the occasion he announced his ambitious plans for the world of mice and men, in a style that he has made his own. [Link]

Now I want to do something in return. I want to bring a smile to the faces of youngsters. I don’t want to start an NGO, but I do wish to do something for the cause of the girl child… The feeling of wanting to give is stronger now than it has been. I think of life as work. I want to introspect as to which direction I should take my life in. I want to do something to save the environment. Honestly, I haven’t done my bit yet but I will start now.

Bringing smiles to young people. Do something for the girl child.  Introspect. Save the environment.  Sell money transfer packages to India. And dance to “Love mera hit hit”. Which mortal can do all this?

Happy birthday King or God whoever you are. Where would be all without you?

95 thoughts on “The King And I

  1. Mithun Vaidhyanathan November 4, 2009 — 6:05 am


  2. Mithun Vaidhyanathan November 4, 2009 — 6:18 am

    This should make its way into imdb I believe!!! awesome writing!!!

  3. guess i’m second…..since the first two are first. now to get back to the blog.

  4. Typo here:

    Ditto “Pades” helmed by Subhash Ghai

  5. @Prashant: That was a Freudian typo. Pad= fart in Bangla. Corrected.

  6. Even though I am a pretty fierce critic of SRK’s acting, having frequently wanted him to act as Hamlet, just so that I could call him the ham in Hamlet, I have to admit that there’s something very endearing about him. Some undefinable trait that sets him apart from most others.

    I too was a great fan in the beginning and thought Deewana was brilliant. Now I look back and cringe at the hysterical “Maa, mujhe Kaajal de de Maa!” dialogue while beating his head against the wall in front of the terrified mother-daughter duo. But at that time this kind of passion in acting was a revelation.

    Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa, will always be his best film. The film where he gave an almost Aamiresque performance (Of course nasty SRK haters say that Aamir gave a Shahrukhesque performance in Mela. Heh). It was a great film, cast, direction, above all music were all fantastic. My personal favorites from the movie were the student’s anthem “Woh to hai albela” (here I differ from you Arnab, possible because you were always a good student), and the ultra romantic “Ae kaash ke hum” songs I am still asked to sing in parties by my peers/friends.

    Of course the Chopras and Johars ruined him, albeit metaphorically, because he made a lot of money with the stupid films he made after that. But as I sat and watched Main Hoon Na and Om Shanti Om, I still realized suddenly that for all my criticism of the man’s acting, I still actually enjoyed watching his energy and presence on screen.

    A true star!

  7. My verdict was simple: this movie was the revenge of the Kalinga rajya on Asoka’s legacy for two reasons: the genocide perpetrated on them and the dropping of Debashish Mohanty.

    “Main Yahaan Ho Yahaan Ho Yahaan” thus informing us of his presence in everything—-T20 franchises, calling card advertisements, wedding party dances, Bollywood nights, game shows, press conferences, in a cricket match stadium handing out CDS of his latest movies? Is this not the ultimate proof of his divinity?


    Good description of His journey!

    BTW, it’s Qaidi number 786 🙂

  8. Baazigar was awesome… but then i saw A Kiss Before Dying….

  9. The first time I liked him was in Fauji. As with you the liking stopped somewhere in the early 2000s.

  10. Simple…you hate him, you love him. But you cannot ignore him!

  11. “unable to decide which was more terrifying—–Madhuri Dixit’s stuffing money down throats, eating human beings or Dipak Tijori as the hero.”

    “My final falling out with the King happened when we went to see “Duplicate”. ………………….
    ……………… It was my friend, in great wrath, lashing out at having his private moment ruined.”

    Oh God GB, amlaughing so hard, people have started staring 🙂
    How DO you remember all this and bring it up at the right moment!!

    Great post (as always).

  12. Not a word about Chak De India, is that deliberate? He made it to the top without having a filmy father/family backing him. He has average look, average physique and a humble beginning as “Fauji”, but still he made it to the top. Even GreatBong sometimes writes “Lassie Come Home” (17thSept 2009) or “Cholche Cholbe” (2nd May 2008), but will it be fair on you if someone only highlights those posts and never mentions “A Letter From Andaman”(and countless other gems) when discussing your blog? 🙂

  13. Nice one..Y you haven’t covered all the new movies after veer zara that stupid rab ne bana di and worst one om shanti om…

    I think yes boss was good movie and so was kabhi ha kabhi na….

    His my fav bollywood star..happy bday king.. 😀

  14. It has been pointed out before but there is something endearing about SRK and it has nothing to do with his acting (dis)abilities. AB senior is generally insufferable in and outside movies these days but you can still watch his old movies – deewar, trishul, zanjeer… even Sunny Deol (I haven’t seen too many of his movies) you can watch a rerun of ‘ghayal’. Not with SRK. The work he has done on his body may interest aunties but his body of work is not worth another look. This is strange.

    Great post GB. “Porn MMS’s had more detailed plots than that one had” – was priceless.

  15. Delighted to find mention of Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa… propbably the only movie where I had liked SRK. Might well be because thats the movie I went to the day my School finals were over! But yes, the music was awesome.

  16. and “the King playing Kapil Sibal trying to scrap exams “- ROTFL :)) How do you come up with these lines , man?!? respect..

  17. for the first time there were traces of good in ur writing on SRK.enjoyed readin ur post :-p
    And KHKN and deewana dil deewana just happen to be my all time favorites too.

  18. My view of the man are almost similar. Was a fan of him in ‘Fauji’. And then came ‘Chamatkar’ – absolutely loved the movie. And then ‘Kabhi haan kabhi na’ – fought with friends arguing how anyone can fail to love the movie. ‘Baazigar’, ‘Darr’ provided a chance to say “I told you so” to friends who used to criticise him. But then started losing interest in him starting with DDLJ (actually, I didn’t like that movie itself that much – didn’t understand what all the fuss was about). I still like him in non-Chopra/Johar movies like Dil Se, Swades, etc. but he doesn’t have the impact he used to have in those initial years.

  19. 766 noy ota 786 hobe 🙂

  20. “”with the King playing Kapil Sibal trying to scrap exams so that his wards may make music and make love”” the most hilarious line.

  21. My verdict was simple: this movie was the revenge of the Kalinga rajya on Asoka’s legacy for two reasons: the genocide perpetrated on them and the dropping of Debashish Mohanty.

    perfect. trademark Great bong. i was about to fall from my chair. brilliant…by the way i too fell that kabhi haan kabhi na’s Sunil and its music is just so real and close to life…it is the most honest SRK ever… credit also goes to shri kundan shah…

    carry on great bong…

  22. Is “In Which Annie gives it Those ones” available anywhere on the internet? I read the screenplay a few years back and have been looking for it ever since.

    Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa.. best hai best!

  23. awesome post!
    Well, for me SRK is GOD, so it’s hard for me not to like even his stupid movies.
    Generally I am very critical of movies and like them for their novelty or content, but with him or his movies, it’s different.
    When I was kid, my super star was Amitabh Bachan, borrowed from my dad, chacha, elder cousins. But he is my own star, the one i have grown up with.
    He still has a long career ahead, and I wish he does something different so that his legacy is as good as Big Bs’.

  24. How the hell did you remember Debashish Mohanty in The Kings Post!

  25. Pingback: The King And I «
  26. suuuuperb post, made my day
    One sentence — “However DDLJ also killed the man for me” . For me too, I still retch everytime I hear the word ‘Senorita’

  27. suuuuperb post, made my day
    One sentence — “However DDLJ also killed the man for me” . For me too, I still retch everytime I hear the word ‘Senorita’

  28. It is “pardes”, not “prades”

    Not that it makes a difference 🙂

  29. Great post. The one SRK incident i remember is waking up after a 15 min nap in the midst of Devdas. I turned to my right to complain to my sister how boring this was and found her deeply touched and crying, turned to my left and saw my mom in exactly the same state. When we reached home and told them about this, they shouted at me telling me that i was oh so very insensitive.

  30. …….As the hero took a bath, I whispered to him “So paisa wasool”? Immediately a slap hit my cheek. It was my friend, in great wrath, lashing out at having his private moment ruined…….

    Completely irreverential comment, but can’t help this:

    I was watching this movie with my new girlfriend, with whom I had only scored first base as yet. Then the hero took a bath, and I leaned over and said something to this effect: ‘if you like that kind of stuff, then we can re-enact that at my place or your place…’. Immediately a slap hit my cheek: thappad ka goonj and all.
    My other classmates who were sitting on either side of us both immediately realized that I had made a ‘nasty’ pass and had been punished.

    At that exact same scene, you leaned over and whispered (I am presuming, for sake of MORE humor!) and you too were slapped.

    Tera image ka kya hua hoga kaalia! LOL!

    Jokes! don’t MIND IT!

  31. Love SRK and love this post ….. !!! Tx GreatBong for not beating him to a crap.

  32. GB.. love your writing.. hopefully you won’t go the same path as SRK once you become a successful famous novelist! Not that I hate the guy.. bechara can’t help it if crazy people out there actually want to see him in Rahul avatar! Usko paapi pet ke liye karna padta hain! Rajib bhaiyya where art thou?

  33. “I could not fully appreciate “Jadoo Teri Nazaar” which would go onto become the anthem of frustrated stalkers as every Romeo from Khardah to Kankurganchi went K-k-kiran”.

    🙂 Thats so true.

  34. “the greatest commercial alliance to be seen in Hindu moviedom”.

    Hindu moviedom? Or is it “Hindi” moviedom.
    Arnab…you are listening to too much Rishi Khujur. 🙂

  35. @ Rishi: You are right :-). The insidious plot is coming to fruition. Will correct.

  36. I have divided opinion when it comes to SRK. Had been a major fan, then shift happened. but still belief exists that there is something about him that can give a performance that nobody can. He has been sellout for most of his post-DDLJ career, choosing what made a hit film rather than risking what made a good film. But there have been performances like Dil Se, Swades and Hey Ram that has, in my mind, justified my fandom for him in the past. I hope you take a little time out to read this post I wrote long time ago.

  37. yetanotheranirban November 4, 2009 — 3:24 pm

    i was coerced into watching dil to pagal hai one day before my exam (forgot which) and what did i get in return? An insight like never before into the culture and rituals of lovey dovey la la land summed up by the following “dialogue” from the movie:
    Is baar valentines day puran masi ke din para hai.

  38. A fitting comic obituary from an ex-fan. Weird thing to be written for the man’s birthday.

  39. lol!! awesome post!!typical greatbong..however you didn’t mention about what you felt or your reaction when you watched swades ? thats my only favourite SRK movie other than DDLJ

  40. “Having gone to see a low-buzz movie called “Baazigar” only to enjoy Anu Malik’s signature “Main milee tu mila duniya jaale to jaale” vocal riff (which I still worship)”

    Ha ha ha ha. great description. but then you forgot his movies like K3G, KHNH, KANK and the works.

  41. Typo
    Kings XI Punjab. I think you were confused with Chennai Super Kings. Awesome post though.

  42. “…some would say his best along with Swades”, IMO Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa was his absolute best. Even Swades had shades of his lip-curl-quavering performance. To see him play (in KHKN) a guy who actually has to deal with life and not just winning over Suchitra K (yuck) was something else altogether, coming on the heels of Baazigar and Darr. What the hell happened to that Shah Rukh?

  43. I remember watching Anjaam as a kid in my Naani’s house in the afternoon while everyone was asleep. Needless to say I couldn’t the whole weekend. The next time I visited, the cable wallah had aired English Babu, Desi Mem. Now that man had impeccable taste in films.

  44. The only reason to believe in ‘Love’ is ‘Tujhe dekha toh yeh jana sanam..’ Come on, he is GOD!

  45. why has srk not got the nobel peace prize ? if obama why not srk ?

  46. What? You missed ‘Kabhi Kushi Kabhi Gham’ and ‘Kal ho na ho’? 🙂

  47. “Is He not the King but God himself?”
    OMG. A whole long post to SRK?
    When is Mithuns Bday? My Bengali sensibilities are hurted. deeply hurted indeed.

  48. @ Dijo. I empathise 😦
    I went with frnds to Devdas, and when SRK was hamming it up on a bridge I couldnt stand it and went “Oh Shut UP!” Only to find he had. And the whole theater heard me.
    Embarrassing. I *Felt* their disapproval.
    Worse? My frnds didnt go out with me. As for me, I dont mind!

  49. GB… No mention of his famous spats with Aamir Khan, Amitabh Bachchan, Arjun Singh and Salman Khan

  50. Thank you for that awesome post ! My all time favorite SRK moment is this cartwheel at 40 seconds:

  51. How could you forget Baadshah???
    May be they meant bad-shah!

    Great post as usual!

  52. I am sure you would have liked “Dil Se”, i think it had one of his best performances. You are right, i did’t like his movies off lately either.

  53. An avid reader of your blog but frugal commentator. Kudos!

  54. Great post, GB. Your comments are hilarious.

    What comesout of the numerous posts here is that a lot of people, including myself, feel the same way about him. Sometime after Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa (I loved that movie)the allure faded. DDLJ was fantastic, but most of the later movies were very forgetable.

    As a Tam, I equate SRK to Rajni and Aamir to Kamal. It is sad that the less adventurous actors in both cases (Rajni and SRK) are more popular than the guys that dare to be different.

    However, I have to say that Rajni, despite his superstar status – he has been able to turn state elections – remains humble and down to earth. Perhaps king(?) Khan can learn a lesson in humility from him.

  55. Is not there something intellectual about SRK? Missing you guys(all kind of intellectuals).

  56. Sometime i feel amusesed on the attitude of somemovie goers (PFC and thier ilks)who think how can we love SRK we are intellectual. Here is a guy, who according to some (as mentiond above)can’t act, can’t dance, can’t have script sense,can’t, can’t….. bue everytime they end to talk about him.pls give him some credit. without being any talent ? he remain biggest star of bollywood since 1-1.5 decade and a very sucsessful person in National Arena.And what is this bullshit about aamir khan acting talent.if growing hair and beard, putting and loosing weight for a role is great acting then what anyone can say. someone compare SRK 2 rajnikant and Aamir khan 2 kamal hasan. but i will compare SRK 2 Big B and Aamir 2 sanjeev kumar. many accuses SRk of curling lips and lifting eye brows. i can also say that abot aamir. He also has some trademark expression and same dilouge dilivery in every film.

  57. Hi greatbong,

    Did you see this movie called “Dushman Duniya Ka”. I don’t know whether it was even released or not. But I remember it was a movie made by Mehmood and had one of his young kids as the lead. In that SRK and Salman Khan had some crazy idotic role to play.

  58. Completely agree DDLJ killed the man…. Didn’t like DDLJ either. All sugar sweet illogical crap of a movie

  59. Superb writing.I would put this on the top aong with your Mithunism posts and Drona review… You have blended it well for SRK lovers and haters alike.

    Awesomeness[goaty bleat] hai…hai…

  60. Superb, GB! Echoed my feelings exactly, except my fave movies of SRK are Swades and Chak De.

  61. @dips
    There’s no such word as ‘hurted’ in any dialect. The past tense of hurt is ‘hurt’ too. 😉

  62. So many comments and not a single defender of “Duplicate” 🙂 I cant believe that even “Ramjaane” got a bit of a commendation in there! I guess I will just have to step in!

    I thought “Duplicate” was a hilariously over-the-top slapstick movie, and can still watch it any time its on the tube, although thats not very often! I remember watching this movie with one of my closest buddies in college, and we were absolutely ROTFL at the completely absurd goings-on. I still think of it as one of the funniest movies from the 90’s!! I have sort of accepted the fact that somehow, there arent many others who share the sentiment.

    But GB, maybe give “Duplicate” a second chance some day, and a man of your refined tastes will catch whats good in it!

  63. kingslayer: I just ignored it, but I am with you. Haven’t seen it on big screen (and it probably doesn’t work quite well there), but have watched it quite a few times on tv and loved it every time. Especially that song with Sonali and Juhi (‘kabhi maine ye socha tha’). I liked ‘Badshah’ also in a similar vein. That phone call between Prem Chopra and SRK (Operation Ma) was quite funny. Looks like not many people enjoy absurd movies.

  64. Having said that, making absurd movies is also an art. Aziz Mirza tries to make such comedies but fails spectacularly (Yes Boss, Phir bhi Dil Hai, etc).

  65. I wonder how many SRK fans remember Guddu and the parachute sequence 🙂
    SRK was still tolerbale until Chupke Chupke came out. I remember my friend and I preferred standing outside the multiplex in the rain rather than wait inside the hall while our female companions swooned over SRK’s corny hamming.

  66. @deshpremi,

    Chupke Chupke? am i missing something?


    is your last name bhargava too? 🙂

    i think the operation maa conversation is really funny and so is the absurdly over the top meeting of srk and the little girl’s dad in the theme park.

  67. @HugeSRKFan
    Sorry, that’s Chalte Chalte. Scarred me for life!

  68. You missed a mention the movie “Baadshah”.


  69. Actually let me mention, like others have, that I loved the absolute OTTness of Duplicate. I also loved Raju Ban Gaya Gentleman and Baazigar (both had awesome music too! Anyone remember “Tu mere saath saath aasman ke aage chal…” from Raju?). Also Phir Bhi Dil Hai Hindustani and recently, Main Hoon Na (ah! Sushmita’s saree in “Tumhe jo maine dekhaaaa…!”) and even OSO. He does the slapstick, knowingly exaggerated kind of comedy brilliantly, even better than Aamir perhaps.

    But his romantic roles turn me off. Dreadful films include Mohabbatein (yuck!), Chalte Chalte, Hum Tumhare Hai Sanam, K3G (Aaaaaargh!), Kal Ho Na Ho etc. He is nothing but a clotheshorse in those. KJo’s wet dream.

    But it has to be granted that inexplicable as it may seem to many of us – he is tremendously popular – far beyond our conception. The same goes for Salman, perhaps even more difficult to understand. My college going cousin is crazy for SRK, when she should be dreaming of the Hrithiks and Shahids instead. That’s the appeal of the man. We have to give it to him there.

    Finally I am glad that the majority of commenters seem to agree that Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa is his best film! 🙂

  70. there actually was a sunny deol fan club in kolkata!! i think this net and too much tv has spoilt that charm of worshipping the stars, otherwise aj kal akshay kumar club to zaroor hota ..

  71. In OSO review a shirtless pic, in IPL 2009, a pic with pants down, now a towel only pic, does GB have a secret crush on Shah Rukh Khan’s hairless, muscular, apparently God like body? Why else would anyone be hellbent on exposing it?

  72. Awesome “King of All” posts. Two thing about SRK though. His focus and his energy. Worth admiring.

  73. This review made my day… Honestly the only movie of SRK other than Chak De which I liked was “Kabhie Haan Kabhie Naa”… I thought you could have written a bit more about that.

  74. Can’t believe there exists a whole world of people out there admitting to have liked KHKN under the comfortable anonymity of the web. And I thought I was the only one to have enjoyed that movie. Wonder if we should all come out of the closet and create a FB of Twitter group to the effect…

  75. No mention of Dil Se … or Phir bhi dil hai hindustani ? 2 films i genuinely felt bad when they did not do well … more than when films like OSO did well.

  76. Superb post. I too loved Kabhi Haan Kabhi Na. But I still think Dil Se and Hey Raam were his best performances and I was really sad when both these films flopped utterly. What a waste for such stellar performances by everyone in both these movies!

  77. I liked him in paheli even though the role he played was similar to all the rahul ones, it seemed to fit the ghost character.

  78. oh my god he really is god reading d link greatbong gave about rajib i m convinced the king is god himself

    Common get real he is the most goodlooking male ever existed in the world, he is biggest suprstar we ever had and without any bckgrnd he is superyoung,ulracool look at his recrnt b’day he looked like a 24 yr old boy, i dnt know much earlier i got a feeling his charisma and looks is diffrnt than any human. HAPPY BIRTHDAY KING OR GOD

  79. antara is the only true fan as she typed a few words in ALLCAPS. this means that HIMESS has/had a more devoted fan following.

  80. East west king khan is the best i like his voice looks everything king is the best

  81. dear mou,

    if you are a TRUE FAN you will type in ALLCAPS!


  82. Hey GB u missed Guddu the can one forget that great song..
    “Thandi mein pasina aaye…pappa se poochunga”

  83. And what about Chakh de? That 40 minutes where we lived the movie just because King uncle wasnt there… Aur woh 40 minute Shahrukh bhinahi chheen sakta

  84. off coast malacca November 16, 2009 — 9:55 am

    the ultimate of all movies got left out…..chamatkar and guddu….how can we forget …”mummy se puchhungaa”…..

  85. Just brought back memories of that outing to see Devdas, paying money to sit on the steps of the theatre to see one of most hideous depictions of the story to be ever put on screen!! But it was fun…. And I also remember what we kept on saying afterwards: “Eeeessshhhh…..”

    Good post GB!

  86. There is a Kolkata chapter of the Sunny Deol Fan Club?


  87. ” hoping that one day, while on the Canning Local squeezed in like sardines between the vegetable vendors and industrious pickpockets, they could stretch out their hand and a Simran would grab it. Come fall in love “……

    ROTFL….priceless 😀

  88. Looked like I am reading my own thoughts on Shahrukh, except for considering him God. He really changed a generation with DDLJ. Really hated Yes Boss& Duplicate types, was almost into tears when they show this person is in prison for so many years for the girl he loves. Even the govt employee in RNBDJ, he brings the inability of the character live into reality.

    Love him hate him but there are only a few in Bollywood who can match him in acting skills and he can bring any role to life. Great post there, you really have got talent of writing.

  89. Written well, but changes tone in the end hurriedly. Also, you forgot to mention Chak De! India.

  90. well you have been pretty one sided through out the post…..and you lack perspective……….The whole world knows that that man never made it too big for his acting abilities which you are harping about..
    SRK is celebrated,revered, worshiped and loved for the fact that every common man can relate to him.His story has been a rags to riches tale..
    It will take something special for a nobody to rule the hearts and souls of Indian minds not just in India but all across the Globe.
    Now if he has such popularity it is not by a fluke but there is something that people never found in the perfectionist appeal of AAmir Khan,Looks of Salman or Legend like status of Amitabh Bachchan.This man has had made it on his own…and is without doubt one of the most celebrated Indians this country has ever seen…

    He gets a thumps up for his boldness,for his charisma and shud be thanked zillion times for being a only superstar who talks and means sense not just in REEL LIFE but in REAL LIFE too……and that makes him special:-)

    no offences plz

    Well its a pity that you cant judge the man for what he has done….

  91. nice post lekin chak de?

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