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King Khan as the fans know him, the romantic who could profess love to the most beautiful maiden, bash numerous thugs and walk into the sunset hand in hand with his lover, while a romantic voice speaks love in the background. Shah Rukh Khan, aka, SRK has achieved it all but in the recent past with his movie – Dilwale. Let’s just say the acting was not quite up to standard like the songs.
What many people do not realize about SRK is that the success of his acting career was due to his ability to be diverse, remember – KKK Kiran…? In Dharr, the 1993 romantic psychological thriller, SRK played the role of a lovesick psychopath, who would stammer his beloved Kiran’s name. Such movies were before SRK became the king of romance and now just when his acting skills are in question, he makes a statement with his new movie, FAN.

Fan is a 2016 Indian thriller film directed by Maneesh Sharma, featuring Shah Rukh Khan in the lead role. The film is produced by Aditya Chopra under the banner of Yash Raj Films, and tells the story of an obsessive fan, a near lookalike of the star. The soundtrack album and original score are composed by Vishal–Shekhar and Andrea Guerra, respectively.

The movie is about two distinct individuals, one is a star and the other is his fan. Gaurav and Aryan, both played by SRK are two individuals in two different worlds, one who is at the peak of stardom and the former who worships his idol and calls himself, fan. The two have an invisible bond and the bond is considered strong by Gaurav who thinks his star is humble. Everything falls apart when Gaurav tries to prove himself to his star, which does not sit well with Aryan. Gaurav is remanded and he finds out who is responsible for remanding him.

Gaurav, an internet café owner is obsessed with Aryan Khanna (SRK) and when he loses faith in his idol, he goes against everything he used to believe in, in an attempt to bring Aryan down. A war between the fan and his star ensues.

Watching a movie of this calibre changes your perspective of movies. The amount of effort SRK puts into maintaining the dual role is commendable. According to sources the makeup which created his ‘Fan look’, Gaurav Chandna, took six hours during the first few days of shooting. SRK the romantic, as we know him, has proved himself by playing the romantic over and over again. This different role exposes something unseen since My name is Khan.

Dialogues make a huge contribution to the movie. Such minor techniques as subtle changes of tone of voice and movement are highlighted towards the end of the movie when Aryan Khanna starts to behave like Gaurav. Only then does it hit you that it’s the same person. The movie does bring in the chases often employed in Bollywood movies to pump adrenalin. It makes one wonder whether SRK took a course in parkour. I guess they needed something for the simple theatre goers, who needed some action, to also be rooted in the seat. However, Fan has a somewhat predictable ending.

There were a few good things about the movie other than the acting. No songs being one. No songs and good acting in a Bollywood movie calls for a celebration. It’s satisfying to know that Bollywood has moved on to diversification. The most salient factor maybe that SRK had to act like SRK, the star he is. He manages to pull this off without a hitch and this in itself is an achievement.

The ending, the faceoff between both Gaurav and Aryan (SRK) , those ten or so minutes of trading roles, is probably never before seen in Bollywood cinema, is definitely worth the price of the ticket. Don’t go to the theatre expecting to see high end car chases and epic fight scenes, the movie has realistic scenes. SRK does not just beat a thug, he gets hurts in the process. Plus there are no bare bodied six pack scenes. The movie is no Chennai Express, it’s not Happy New Year, it’s not Dilwale. These were all masala movies that lacked direction and their only motive was to make box office earnings. This movie exceeds expectations in that it gives a taste of what could happen when an obsessed fan goes berserk over his idol. It also gives a glimpse of what stardom does to an actor of any calibre. A definite 4/5 rating on this one and overall favourable reviews online.

REVIEWED BY AHMED SULTAN