And so explained a dear friend of mine and Salman admirer to me the meaning behind the word that makes the name of the actor’s Eid release! Honestly, ever since I started following Salman on Twitter, all that he wrote about was his forthcoming film; and I was a little tired. From pictures, to his day-t0-day shooting schedule, to his interaction with those on the set…Dabangg is all that his readers read during his early days on Twitter! I mean film promotion is all good…but I thought actors and producers keep mum while filming?? And they are allowed to talk about it only during its ‘official promotion’ period? But I guess such restraints dissolve when its a home production!! And Thank God for it being one…or else I’d doubt it would have had this mighty a punch!
Chulbul Pandey is a character that was perhaps created for a particular effect and for it he was given an eclectic mix of paraphernalia. All packaged to drive home one singular idea – cinema is meant to entertain!! And Dabangg does that in style!!
Consider the following lines / scenes – (I am writing from memory, so if the dialogues are a wee-bit different from the original in the film, please excuse!! )
Chulbul Pandey screeches his police jeep to a halt in what seems to be the middle of a road. Soon enough he is surrounded by his men and he divides his men a-la- Asrani as Angrezo ke Zamane ka Jailor style…
Chulbul Pandey – Mote Wale idhar jao (pointing to his right)
Patle Wale idhar jao (pointing to his left)
Aur jo fit hai mere peeche aao (he looks around and sees there are none left!)
(To himself) Waah re Police Force!!!
Chulbul Pandey gate crashes Cheddi Singh (Sonu Sood’s) reverie with Munni (you all know Munni Badnam Hui) and jumps into the ring with his naach gaana. When the song ends, a few dynamic lines follow after which comes the following cracker…
Chulbul Pandey – Hum tumhare body mein itne ched kar denge pata nahin chalega khaye kahan se aur *%&# kahan se!
And there are many more such liners…not just from Chulbul a.k.a Robin Hood Pandey but from a mix of varied characters. And there are quite a handful at that too. Parents, Dimple Kapadia and Vinod Khanna are minor characters and wasted to be very honest. Sanjey Manjrekar as the father of the girl, again a 2-scene drunk appearance! Anupam Kher as the politician in 3 scenes to be exact and Om Puri, the corrupt police man wanting a corrupt son-in-law is again seen not more than four times! My reasoning for this would be that the producer only wanted brand names…nondescript actors for these roles wouldn’t have pleased him!
Sonu Sood – played the villainous Cheddi Singh to the hilt! I guess he has reconciled to the fact that he can never become the lead actor in a film…and it’s wise to settle with character roles and negative shades. Sonu, it works!!! Flex your muscles (you have plenty of that) and you will do well for yourself… just learn to modulate your voice, you’ve grown up in your expressions!
Arbaaz Khan – playing the dual role of producer and actor is something!! And Arbaaz has done it rather well. Playing a dumb wit character Makhhi, Chulbul’s step brother he wasn’t all that bad…I think he enjoyed playing Sallu’s younger brother! (Remember Pyar Kiya Toh Darna Kya?) But most importantly, he did that which no other producer can really do…bring his co-producer and wife to the screen for an item number that would become a super seller!!! All hats off to Malaika for pulling off Munni Badnaam Hui…until now my personal favourite was Bipasha’s twin numbers in Omkara! But the lyrics, the music, the set and the choreography goes way beyond Bipasha’s bidi!!!
Sonakshi Sinha – Okay, SRK brought Deepika Padukone, AK brought Asin to B’town and now its Sallu’s turn to usher in a newbie! Well done Sonakshi…you played the part very very well. Those fierce, stern looks worked, just as your coy, demure avtaar. Your fiesty lines and lovey dovey blink and miss scenes. Dream debut for Shotgun’s daughter…that which his son Luv couldn’t muster in his entry into films albeit the presence of actors like Hema Malini and Rekha!
Salman Khan – Now what do I say about the man who I have fallen in love with all over again??? There is no other actor in the industry who could have pulled off Chulbul Pandey as this man! Zany, witty, macho, hateable and lovable in the same breath…this is the quirkiest character that he has perhaps played in all his career! Watch the climax, when he turns into our desi version of Hulk…Sallu and shirtless always works!! One word for his dances…he has never been a great dancer, but this is one film that has played up his irreverent dance moves to the hilt! , I can’t even recall his last big hit! Wanted did well I am told, but I missed it. And the ones before it failed to glimmer! But with this release, Salman has wiped all of that of our mind! Watch him, he deserves the title Dabangg!!
Anubhav Kashyap – Pat on your back Mr Kashyap…you have proudly deviated from the school of thought that your brother Anurag adheres to, but you have done it in style!! Keep it up and let’s see more of you…
Dabangg marks the return of the typical masala potboiler, something that has of late vanished from our cinema. Lots of dhishum dhishum, scenes and lines that inspire cat calls and whistles and plot that doesn’t require you to think too much! A perfect Eid release…Salman can rest for a while now!
I am not suprised…!