Director: Maneesh Sharma
Cast: Shah Rukh Khan, Waluscha de Sousa, Shriya Pilgaonkar
'Rehne de, tu nahi samjhega' (let it be, you won't understand) is the last thing we hear before the curtain falls on 2 hours of director Maneesh Sharma trying to make the audiences 'understand' exactly that -- what it means to be a Fan.
We are a country well acquainted with the term -- fan. Shah Rukh, Sachin, Amitabh Bachchan, Salman for us are emotions. We build temples, we pray, we fast, we celebrate this emotion. Maneesh, in his film, takes this a step further.
Partly inspired by The Fan made by Hollywood director Tony Scott in 1996, Maneesh 20 years later Indianises it by aptly choosing the man who isn't alien to the concept of fans, Shah Rukh Khan. The twist here though is he plays both the fan as well as the superstar.
While it perhaps would not have been too tough for Khan to play a star, portraying the role of his delusional fan (Gaurav Chandna) Khan would surprise many who have been waiting to see him in this avatar. It may remind you of the early 90s when Khan had made his mark by giving rise to the genre of the anti-hero with movies like Anjaam, Darr and Baazigar. His body language, his mannerisms as the star and as the fan is markedly different and for the first time gives us a glimpse of not just Shah Rukh Khan the star or Shah Rukh Khan the actor, but also Shah Rukh Khan the person. He executes this complex act and passes with flying colours. Not new to facing backlash for his controversies in real life, he effortlessly touches upon the shades of grey in a star's life.
While Khan's acting prowess will keep you glued to the film, Maneesh's brand of crisp and tight storytelling holds the plot together. The lack of songs doesn't even register as the journey of Gaurav, his obsession with his idol and how he deals with a heartbreak, engages the audience.
The scene when Gaurav comes to Mumbai and is standing outside his idol's house is one of the most powerful scenes in the film. That episode makes him realise the chasm between him and his idol. From this point, the film takes a dramatic twist.
It's a film about SRK, the star and SRK, the fan. And by the end of it, the fan wins hearts -- with his dialogues (thanks to Habib Faisal), costumes (Niharika Khan take a bow), his persona and his toothy grin (outstanding VFX). Cinematographer Manu Anand makes the film look like a visual treat.
Gaurav rules the film through its various twists and turns, its emotional crests and troughs and even in its ending. He makes you believe how it's good to be a fan but superstar Aryan Khanna justifies how one must have their own identity.
The film's VFX is at par with Hollywood. The action scenes shot in Dubrovnik and in Delhi are top-notch, designed by Korean action director O se-Young.
If you are a fan and even if you are not, this is a film that's worth a watch....