Pathaan in Bangladesh: A cinematic experience

In January, a distributing company in Dhaka submitted an application to import Shah Rukh Khan starer film 'Pathaan' under SAFTA agreement.Collected

The Shah Rukh Khan comeback film is revolutionary in many aspects. Not only has it revived the Bollywood film industry from its left and right failures of films at the box office, but it also has put an end to the nonsensical boycott trend that has been ongoing by the far right extremists in India. Shah Rukh Khan returning to the screen after a hiatus of over four years was such a craze among his fans and casual fans, that many people from our country flew to India only to watch him on the silver screen. His star power and his fans’ craze for him is unparalleled not only in India, and all over the world, but in our country too. So the demand by the fans has landed his comeback film to our country. Pathaan will remain to be a trendsetter for generations to come in our country, as it becomes the first Indian film to release in Bangladesh.

The reception of the movie in Bangladesh has been tremendous; tickets have sold out like hotcakes and the shows have been houseful.  Although I have viewed the movie twice on Amazon Prime Video before entering the theater, I was still beyond thrilled and excited to watch my childhood hero on the big screen after such a long time, that too in my home country. The atmosphere outside and inside the screenings have been no less than electrifying, and my wife and I had the most amazing experience watching the Pathaan spectacle.

'Pathaan' movie poster

I have always believed that Shah Rukh Khan is not only limited to romantic roles, (note: Don series, Raees), and this film made my belief even stronger that he is apt for action roles. A skilled and methodical artiste like him gives his best in every of his endeavors, and this film was no exception. From his physical transformation to his intense expressions in the action scenes, he has mastered it all. I never thought I would see him performing such hand to hand combat scenes and see him performing a deadly sweet chin music maneuver [note: Sweet Chin Music is the finisher of the legendary WWE superstar, Shawn Michaels].

Usually in Hindi commercial films like these, the antagonists are portrayed weaker than the protagonist. The graph of the villain is uplifted in the movie with his backdrop story, which made it even more thrilling to watch and it seemed John Abraham was no less than SRK in the movie; be it in action or chase sequences.

With Pathaan arriving in Bangladesh, I believe we are here to witness a new era and see more of our beloved Hindi movies in our local theatres soon.

Salman Khan’s cameo has been a major highlight in the film and it was a blast. Together, he and SRK took us down the memory lane and gave us the iconic Karan Arjun vibes. However, it was Deepika and SRK’s chemistry which was lukewarm. I wasn’t hoping for a romantic angle, but I believe her character has not been well developed in the film and there was not enough room for the chemistry to bloom between her and SRK. But it was the chemistry between SRK and Dimple Kapadia that was the takeaway, especially in the beautiful emotional scenes where the audience would feel more empathetic towards the characters. The climax of the film became very intense and each scene was like edge of the seat thrillers.

Salman Khan and Shah Rukh Khan in a scene from the film 'Pathaan'.

Siddharth Anand directorial Pathaan is a mass entertainer film and it never had a dull moment. The movie is very fast paced, the background music compliments the film very well with Pathaan’s theme music being my personal favorite, followed by the song, Jhoome Jo Pathaan, dialogues are crisp, and the larger than life set pieces and scale uplifts the movie to a whole new spectacular level. From taking us to a nostalgic trip of Karan Arjun, to reenacting dialogue from SRK’s earlier film, Darr, in a comical scene, which makes us chuckle, the heist scenes in Russia made us somewhat recall the heist in Happy New Year, pulling the pin of the grenade made us reminisce about Main Hoon Na, and SRK’s character Pathaan who has been on an exile for a long time before returning to the mission metaphorically reminds us that he has been absent on the long screen for a long time, and is returning with a bang. The injuries his character mentions at one point in the film, reminds us of his real life injuries as well.

Deepika Padukone and Shah Rukh Khan in the song 'Besharam Rang' from their film 'Pathaan'.

Shah Rukh Khan exudes super heroic vibes in Pathaan with memorable dialogues and expressive histrionics. The movie swings and strides with all the style and aplomb, and had a blockbuster written all over it, and it rightfully deserved it. With Pathaan arriving in Bangladesh, I believe we are here to witness a new era and see more of our beloved Hindi movies in our local theatres soon.