I just got home from Fan, on the way home I texted everyone I know “SO GOOD! An actual good movie! Like, Queen good! You must all watch it.” That’s kind of the important part of the review here, but if you want more, keep reading!
(check out moviemavengal’s review here)
I mean, I don’t even know where to start! I guess, with Shahrukh. His performances are really brilliant. At the end, I found myself thinking “Oh come on, Shahrukh! Giving yourself the hero’s role, the perfect guy who always wins. Unlike the other guy, who always loses. Oh wait, that’s also Shahrukh!”
The rest of the cast is fine, I guess? None of them really have characters. Not because they are 2 dimensional, but because they are so secondary to the story of our hero/villain. Shahrukh’s star character does have a wife and family, and a loyal assistant, and the Gaurav character has doting parents and a girl he has a crush on. They each get their moment in the sun, but for most of the film they are just there to be there, to fill in the blanks around our two heroes.
They must have known that’s how the film would be, that it was going to be about Shahrukh and Shahrukh and no one else, because that’s how they cast it. I’m sure they could have gotten Rani Mukherjee to play his wife in a couple of juicy scenes, to have Hrithik play the rising star who was clearly based on Hrithik, to have Anupum Kehr play our hero’s father. But instead, they got a variety of very good, very experienced actors, none of whom drew attention away from Shahrukh and Shahrukh.
The world of this film is just about the two of them, because it’s about how the two of them are alone together in the world, how there is a special linkage between them, that sets them apart. And I think that is why the perspective and sympathy keeps switching between the two of them. We start off with Gaurav, then switch to Aryan, then back, then forth, and so on. The two of them see their relationship differently, but they both see that it is just between them, that no one else should be involved. They send each other secret messages, they play vicious games with each other, but it all comes out of a place of love.
You know, that’s kind of what this movie is most like, an obsessive love story. Darr, obviously, but a Darr where Juhi gets equally obsessed with defeating Shahrukh. Or, maybe Roma and Don? Or, Ram and Leela from Ram-Leela. From their first meeting, even before that when they first meet, they are obsessed with each other, they are two sides of the same coin. Gaurav, sure, he’s a fan, like he says. But Aryan too. His reaction to seeing Gaurav’s insanity is to take responsibility for it, to try to solve the problem himself, to keep it between the two of them.
I was thinking this was going to be a movie about Aryan not being able to appreciate his fans. But actually, it is about him appreciating them too much, trying to take full responsibility for them, not letting outside society come into their connection.
Let’s see, what else can I say without spoiling it? Oh! Dubrovnik is gorgeous! Totally want to go there someday.