BAJRANGI BHAIJAAN (2015) Trailer: More Action-Comedy Than Action-Serious
Known for his annual film releases around the Muslim celebration of Eid, Salman Khan has yet another release this year which aims to be a mindless entertainer, while usually more of the former than the latter. His last release ‘Kick’ wasn’t appreciated by the intellectual movie-goer, despite being a financial success. While it provided much escapism, it’s biggest downfall was attempting to be a seriously dramatic heist film, and failing. (For more on ‘Kick’, read my full Review here) However, Khan seems to be trying to remedy that with his latest movie, ‘Bajrangi Bhaijaan’, which seems less serious, but still with enough drama to tug at the heartstrings. The full trailer showcases the premise of the film, but most importantly, sets the tone and expectations from the movie, which is less displeasing than his other films.
While ‘Kick’ promised a high wire action adventure movie, but ended up being riddled with plot holes and logic redundancies, ‘Bajrangi Bhaijaan’ provides a simpler story. The story follows the adventure that the kind hearted character of Salman Khan’s embarks on when having to return a mute Pakistani girl stranded in India, back to her home country, presumably to her family. The story is conceptualized to be in a way, exploitative, using the innocence of a young girl and her helplessness to be the plot device that will most likely make way for the more contrived sequences of the film, as exhibited by Khan spouting inspiration religious lines before embarking on his journey, as seen in the trailer. This use of a helpless girl as a plot device though, seems a lot less offensive than a similar one used in ‘Kick’. (more on that here)
‘Bajrangi Bhaijaan’ seems to follow more of an action comedy genre, which should work for the film, as the silliness of the surreal action sequences and overly cheesy elements can be written off easier in a comedy than a dramatic film to be taken at face value. Especially given that Salman Khan’s comedy movies are definitely a lot less ridiculous than his attempts at seriously dramatic films. Mostly. Khan also has better success at being taken seriously by general film goers (not the ardent Salman Khan fan of course, for whom he can do no wrong) when he dons more of a humble, and morally righteous common man type of an avatar, than the larger than life, action super hero roles that he’s most famous for. ‘Bajrangi Bhaijaan’ also has Kareena Kapoor-Khan as the love interest in the film, which seems like a waste for the actress, given her recent body of work.
Director of ‘Bajrangi Bhaijaan’, Kabir Khan, has most of his previous films dealing with religious or national issues in one way or another, from ‘Kabul Express’ to ‘New York’. Even his most recent film with Salman Khan, ‘Ek Tha Tiger’, (my Review here) was a movie that prioritized the love story and maintained focus on the relationship between the characters, instead of getting distracted with the other more conventional plot points that have been tread on multiple times, like patriotism and national pride. Hopefully ‘Bajrangi Bhaijaan’ will similary focus on the adventure aspect of the story, especially with Nawazuddin Siddiqui also along for the ride, than getting caught up in any other high handed social commentary.
‘Bajrangi Bhaijaan’ is set to be released on July 16th, 2015; starring Salman Khan, Kareena Kapoor-Khan and Nawazuddin Siddiqui; written & directed Kabir Khan