Salman Khan has always been a controversial figure in the Bollywood industry. From the lover boy in the 90s, to the action hero in 2000s, there’s a long way Salman Khan has come to get where he is now. Always been in the news for all the wrong reasons, Salman Khan’s popularity and influence over people has remain unchanged, in fact, only growing. “Bhai”, as he’s called by his beloved fans, has always been a trendsetter. However, his movies has always been a target of negative criticism.
I have always belonged to the kind of people who never found Salman Khan movies entertaining/different/interesting. I’m not going to lie, I never went to see a Salman Khan starrer in a theatre, or even on the television for that matter. Not out of hatred or anything, I never liked the kind of movies he did.
For Sultan, however, I decided to make an exception. Whether it was the trailer, or Anushka Sharma, or the Yashraj banner, I do not know. It looked like a movie I could enjoy, which is why I finally booked a ticket and went for it yesterday.
So I’m ready for the movie, expecting nothing. The movie starts with two people discussing the greatness of Sultan followed by a typical Salman Khan entry, while the name Sultan Ali Khan echoes in the background. The mustache looked very manly and he put a lot of effort on shaping his body which was visible. You see more of Salman Khan, quite literally, wearing just the “langot” most Pehelwans are seen in, with nothing on top (not that Salman needed a reason for not wearing a shirt).
Anushka Sharma in Sultan is phenomenal. She’s the crisp and quirky Harayanvi Jattni, a wrestler herself, making her mark in a society that’s never been good to women. Her portrayal of Aarfa is brilliant, and she absolutely nails all the scenes. Be it the tough Aarfa, killing it with her wrestling moves, or the romance, Anushka Sharma is flawless.
The supporting actors in the movie are brilliant. Anant Vidhaat Sharma as Govind, Sultan’s childhood friend, has portrayed the character really well. His Harayanvi accent is the one to lookout for. Amit Sadh as Aakash, the founder of a league Sultan makes a comeback is a promising actor. However, Randeep Hooda is the one who kills it with his acting skills. Chilled out, dapper, and oh so handsome, Fateh Singh (the character played by Randeep), is the perfect trainer to Sultan. He’s witty, to the point, quirky and funny, preparing Sultan for his comeback.
There’s this one particular scene that shows the actor side of Salman Khan very well. Sultan has to prove himself before Fateh Singh, that there’s still the fighter Sultan left in him. Sultan stands in front of the mirror, without a shirt, and stares at his belly. He just breaks into tears, and in that emotion, we know the kind of thoughts going inside his mind. He knows it’s not going to be easy, he knows it’s something he has to do, he knows this is the only way back to Aarfa, and he knows he cannot give up. There’s this moment of weakness where he can’t contain his tears, so he just sobs like a child. But just seconds later, he puts back his shirt, and rushes out ready to face come what may. Absolutely brilliant!
The songs in the movie aren’t too good, except for Jag Ghoomeya. It’s catchy, beautifully set and slow, which makes it a melodious music. Baby Ko Bass Pasand Hai is a good party number, but we have had better. The other songs are irrelevant, but bearable.
With a screen-time of almost 3 hours, the movie could have been shortened by reducing the romance scenes. However, at no point do you feel bored or sleepy, as the storyline keeps you engrossed. The fight scenes are entertaining, keeping you gripped and wondering as to what’s about to come. The love story of Sultan and Aarfa is the crux of the movie, while other things just move around it.
If you’re not a Salman Khan fan and have formed a negative perception about it, don’t. It’s not a Dabangg, Kick or Wanted, it’s different. From a person who has never liked his films, you should watch Sultan for a never seen before Salman Khan. He looks dashing, acts brilliantly, worked hard for this movie which is evident, and for the first time doesn’t overshadow the actress.
Maine Pehelwani chhod di, par laddna nahi chhoda.