Hyderabad: Jawan, the latest cinematic offering from the directorial prowess of Atlee, unfolds as a grand entry into the Shah Rukh Khan universe. The film, which hit the screens on September 7, unmistakably bears Atlee’s signature stamp – a vivid display of larger-than-life action sequences, a resounding and dramatic background score, intense emotional narrative, and song-and-dance extravaganzas featuring a legion of background dancers.
It’s the quintessential Bollywood masala, aimed squarely at captivating the hearts of the masses. Yet, does this ambitious collaboration between Atlee and SRK soar to greatness, or does it falter under the weight of its ambition?
Let’s delve into the heart of the matter.
A film for everyone
Atlee’s filmography consistently reveals a common thread – an unwavering commitment to crafting films tailored for a diverse spectrum of audiences. This approach strikes a harmonious chord with the masses, as evident in the recent resounding success of Sunny Deol’s Gadar 2, meticulously fashioned to resonate with the majority of Indian moviegoers. Atlee remains steadfast in this trajectory, churning out films that appeal to a broad viewership.
Jawan is meticulously structured so that just when you sense the narrative might be losing momentum, a high-energy sequence swoops in to reignite the fervour. Shah Rukh Khan visibly relishes his multifaceted role in the film. While his Hindi dubbing at times appears slightly exaggerated in sync with his body movements, it invokes nostalgic memories of Aparichit and Gabbar Is Back. However, this time, the synchronisation is finely tuned, offering a true-blue masala movie experience.
Adhering to Atlee’s directorial pattern, one observes how he intricately weaves several films into one. The hero-worship element frequently takes precedence, often overshadowing the primacy of the story and screenplay. GK Vishnu’s cinematography thrives particularly in action scenes, particularly those featuring hand-to-hand combat.
Performances and technicalities
In the realm of performance, Shah Rukh Khan delivers what could be hailed as his finest outing in commercial cinema. This time around, the layers he adds to his characters elevate his portrayal beyond the realms of Raees and Pathaan. While three of his characters make an indelible impression, the rest contribute to the film’s narrative tapestry.
In terms of character dynamics, Nayanthara assumes a pivotal role alongside Shah Rukh, although her character could have benefitted from greater depth and a more pronounced influence on the storyline.
Nevertheless, her on-screen presence radiates sheer brilliance. Vijay Sethupathi, an actor of formidable talent, is somewhat underutilised in this particular role and deserves a more robust character arc.
Within the supporting ensemble, Sanya Malhotra and Sunil Grover struggle to etch memorable imprints. Deepika Padukone, making a special cameo appearance, exudes an aura of sensuality in her ’90s persona, adorned in tantalising sarees.
Atlee, equipped with a profound understanding of the intricacies of Indian cinema, adeptly taps into the very pulse of the audience. With Jawan, he astutely serves precisely what the Indian viewers yearn for, seasoned with an extra pinch of cinematic masala.
Anirudh Ravichander, though offering no standout songs, excels in the domain of background scoring. While the routine foot-tapping melodies may not linger in your memory, the orchestral brilliance conjured through the instrumentation resonates long after the final credits roll.
In summation, Jawan stands as Atlee’s resounding tribute to Shah Rukh Khan, solidifying his legacy as the last of the stars. With its unequivocal mass appeal, the film delivers an authentic Bollywood experience, guaranteed to leave an indelible mark.
Cast: Shah Rukh Khan, Nayanthara, Deepika Padukone