Shahrukh Birthday Month Discussion Post: One Year of Films in Shahrukh’s Career to Take to a Desert Island, What Would it Be? (and you can’t pick 1998)

This is a question someone asked me ages back and it has stuck with me.  So I am stealing it to see if anyone can come up with a better answer than me!

What stuck with me especially was the priviso she put in at the start which made me realize something I never had before- “Any year except 1998”.  Because oh my gosh, 1998 is the clear winner. Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, Dil Se, and Duplicate.  Family romance classic, art film, and silly comedy all in one year.

But if I can’t pick 1998, then I think I am torn between 2016 and 2017.

2016: Fan and Ae Dil Hai Mushkil

2017:  Dear Zindagi, or Raees and Jab Harry Met Sejal.

Oh! Or 1995!  Karan Arjun, Zamaana Deewana, Guddu, Oh Darling Yeh Hai India, Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge, Ram Jaane, and Trimurti.

Huh.  Shahrukh made as many movies in 1995 as Ranbir and Ranveer made in the first 5 years of their career.  This game would be no fun with them, they only make one movie a year (if that).

Anyway, what year would you pick?  For your convenience, I have them all listed out below.  And I warn you, it’s a lot harder than you might think!  There are way too many good options.

1992: Deewana, Chamatkar, Dil Aashna Hai, Raju Ban Gaya Gentleman

1993: Maya Memsaab, King Uncle, Baazigar, Darr

1994: Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa, Anjaam

1995: Karan Arjun, Zamaana Deewana, Guddu, Oh Darling Yeh Hai India, Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge, Ram Jaane, and Trimurti.

1996: English Babu Desi Mem, Chaahat, Army

1997: Koyla, Yes Boss, Pardes, Dil To Pagal Hai

1998: Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, Dil Se, Duplicate

1999: Baadshah

2000: Phir Bhi Dil Hai Hindustani, Josh, Mohabattein, Hey Ram, Gajja Gamini 

2001: One 2 Ka 4, Asoka, Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham

2002: Hum Tumhare Hain Sanam, Shakti: The Power, Saathiya, Devdas

2003: Chalte Chalte, Kal Ho Na Ho

2004: Main Hoon Na, Swades, Veer-Zaara

2005: Paheli

2006: Don, Kabhi Alveda Na Kehna

2007: Chak De India, Om Shanti Om

2008: Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi

2009: Luck By Chance, Billu

2010: Dulha Mil Gaya, My Name is Khan

2011: Ra.One, Don 2

2012: Jab Tak Hain Jaan

2013: Chennai Express

2014: Happy New Year

2015: Dilwale

2016: Fan, Dear Zindagi, Ae Dil Hai Mushkil

2017: Raees, Jab Harry Met Sejal

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52 thoughts on “Shahrukh Birthday Month Discussion Post: One Year of Films in Shahrukh’s Career to Take to a Desert Island, What Would it Be? (and you can’t pick 1998)

  1. Nooooooooo! It’s really not fair that Devdas and Chalte Chalte are split across two years. Those are my favorites just in terms of looks, beauty, entertainment value. Similar for Dear Zindagi, Raees, and JHMS (and FAN, to a lesser extent).

    If I have to pick one year it will be 1997, because 2 of my regular re-watches are there Koyla and Yes Boss. And I like the other two ok, especially certain scenes.

    But if I could cheat I’d pick 4 years 2002-2003, and 2016-2017.

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    • That was my policy too! I started with the one film I would watch over and over, and then found that year. So, 1995 for DDLJ (and bonus, the year with the most releases in general). And then 2016-2017 for JHMS and Fan. This is following the Desert Island theory, where I would want something that was endlessly rewatchable. They aren’t necessarily my favorite films, but I think I could rewatch Fan every day for a year and always find something new to appreciate in it.

      I think if I were cheating and allowing two years, I would be solidly 2016-2017. That last run of films really has nothing to equal it in my opinion.

      I think the original question was “if you were showing someone else Shahrukh’s films, what one year would you pick?” I changed it to desert island, but the original question, just for range and enjoyment, I think I might go with 2004? Main Hoon Na, Swades, Veer-Zaara, all in one year. Comedy, social message, and straight romance. What do you think?

      On Mon, Oct 29, 2018 at 11:02 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • I don’t exactly remember but I think my premise was that you were about to introduce Shahrukh to someone who’s never seen his movies before. So the question was between choosing a year like 2004 where you can show the person multiple solid movies or 1995 where you can show one great movie and a bunch of bad ones as well.

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        • And now he has made this game even harder with years like 2016 where you can show 3 really good movies that are also extremely challenging to watch.

          On Mon, Oct 29, 2018 at 11:25 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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        • I found it! Took me a while because it was under your old username:

          “You meet a stranger that wants to watch a Shahrukh movie and the only thing that stranger knows is that Shahrukh is an actor with a lot of fans. You can give the stranger a set of Shahrukh’s movies only from a specific year to watch. Like all of his movies from 2016 (Fan and Dear Zindagi). The only restriction is that you can’t give her any movies from 1995 🙂 What would you do?”

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          • Nice! Looks like I didn’t include cameos like ADHM but it makes it more interesting to include them. Especially important cameos like Luck By Chance and ADHM.

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          • If we go back to your original idea of showing Shahrukh to someone knew, the nice thing about the LBC and ADHM cameos is that they lift right out, you could show just that one scene to give a sense of his range and wouldn’t need to show the whole movie.

            On Mon, Oct 29, 2018 at 11:57 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  2. I think I might go with 2007 (OSO and CDI), but my second pick would be 2001 because K3G would be a DIK for me in most situations and someday I’m going to learn to love Asoka. Third pick would be 2017, I suppose.

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    • I give up, what is DIK slang for? The Internet tells me it means “donation in kind”, but that doesn’t match the context.

      K3G does have the advantage of letting your fandom choose between Hrithik, SRK, and Amitabh, plus the ladies. And if we allow for the DVDs on our Desert Island, K3G has the most extensive special features, with the interviews and deleted scenes and everything else it’s a good 4+ hours worth of entertainment.

      And you are going for 2017? I thought you were the one who only kind of liked JHMS? I say “the one” because everyone else seems to either adore it, or hate it, no middle ground.

      On Mon, Oct 29, 2018 at 11:13 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • Desert Isle/Island Keeper….it may be a romance readers term too like HEA (Happily Ever After)

        And 2017 is my third choice because I can’t deny that older bearded SRK is the sexiest SRK and those two films do show a good range and they’re bonus Anushka who I’ll always have a girl-crush on. I am totally in the middle ground for JHMS.

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        • Good luck to you! It’s very lonely in the JHMS middle-ground. I used to be there with you, and then watch 3 definitely moved me into the “love it” category.

          On Mon, Oct 29, 2018 at 2:02 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  3. This is my question! But I remember saying that you can’t choose 1995 (due to DDLJ) not 1998 but excluding 1998 does make it more challenging 🙂

    I think 2004 is a really good choice as well. I don’t love any of those movies but all three are solid movies and are quite different from each other.

    2007 is also a really good choice. Two really good movies in two different genres.

    “2017: Dear Zindagi, or Raees and Jab Harry Met Sejal.”
    Didn’t Dear Zindagi come out in 2016?

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    • The dangers of cutting and pasting! I had all the titles in a row in one draft and then messed up when I tried to split them. Oh well, it’s right in the list below.

      I should have known this was from you, you always ask the best questions!

      It’s probably not a coincidence that his best movies tended to come out in years with few other films, I’m seeing a lot of “3 good films” or “1 or 2 Great Films” years. Mixed in with a bunch of “3-7 mediocre films” years.

      So, if 1998 is out, would you choose 2004 for your desert island? Or 2015 so you can have Varun 🙂 ?

      On Mon, Oct 29, 2018 at 11:21 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • If we were in a desert island situation, then I’d need to have a movie that I know I can rewatch multiple times. I love Varun but I can’t handle rewatching Dilwale that many times. It just makes me sad. I don’t love any of the 2004 movies enough to want to rewatch them a lot. This leaves me with 1995, 2006, 2007, and maybe 2016. I think I’d end up going with 1995 so I’ll have DDLJ. I haven’t seen any of the other 1995 movies but there are so many of them that I’m sure that I’ll like at least a couple of the other six movies.

        If we could combine two years then I would go for 2006-2007. KANK, Chak De India, and Om Shanti Om are so good. I haven’t seen Don but I have faith that Farhan Akhtar made a pretty enjoyable movie as well.

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        • Ooo, 2006-2007 is a good choice. It also gives a nice variety of genres, sports movie and spoofy fun movie and melodramatic romance, plus action thriller film. So no matter what mood you are in on your desert island, you have something to watch.

          I have (of course) seen all the 1995 movies and I can tell you that Karan-Arjun is a decent action film, Zamaana-Deewana is a really fun rom-com silly thing, Guddu is horrible but has one decent song plus Manisha, Oh Darling Yeh Hai India is just weird (which makes it very rewatchable for all the weirdness), Ram Jaane is so-bad-its-good, and Trimurti is pretty bad but has a great finale action sequence. So all in all, a nice variety for your desert island, although not all of very good quality.

          On Mon, Oct 29, 2018 at 11:52 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • Plus all the 2006-2007 movies have different co-stars. Just looking at actresses, there’s Rani, Preity, Priyanka, and Deepika.

            I feel like I would like Karan Arjun. Isn’t it a reincarnation masala movie?

            Also I noticed that you’ve reviewed Yes Boss recently. Where did you see it with subtitles? I was looking for it years ago.

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          • I think Yes Boss is on Netflix now, not sure how long that has been case. I am so far behind on my Netflix list! But on the other hand, it seems less important now because Netflix is rapidly going from “what is a good movie to watch on Netflix?” to “this is a good movie and I bet I can find it on Netflix”.

            Karan Arjun is a total masala fun reincarnation movie. Avenging mother, two bouncy love interests, and it’s reincarnation crossed with separated brothers since Shahrukh-Salman are raised separately and have to remember their shared former life.

            Yes Boss is probably a fun one for you too, kind of silly and kooky but ultimately a sweet romance.

            On Mon, Oct 29, 2018 at 12:21 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • So strange! I JUST watched it, but where? It’s on youtube, but without subtitles. How’s your Hindi?

            On Mon, Oct 29, 2018 at 5:39 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • I would have attempted watching it without subtitles if it was a recent rom-com since I would be sure that there would be a good amount of English and simple Hindi that I could follow what was going on. Yes Boss on the other hand would be more of a challenge.

            I totally forgot to check Einthusan! I found it with subs!

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          • Yaaay! And also, what a sad statement on the descent of Hindi on film!

            On Mon, Oct 29, 2018 at 8:18 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  4. For introducing someone from just one year of films, I think I’d pick 2003 or 2017. 2003 would be more if the person wants to know what Shah Rukh “means” in the broader industry, fandom, and development of Hindi movies; and 2017 if the person wants to know about Shah Rukh as an actor, now, or about why I am a Shah Rukh fan.

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    • 2017 is really amazing for Shahrukh-the-actor, going from a gritty hardfighting thug to a conflicted suffering man in love.

      On Mon, Oct 29, 2018 at 12:25 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  5. I love this question!
    After consulting Wikipedia my answer is: I want movies from July 2004 to July 2005. It’s one year and this way instead of Main Hoon Na (April 2004) I can take Paheli (June 2005). Perfect. And how amazing 2004 was for Shah Rukh’s career? Veer-Zaara premiered in november, and only one month later Swades came out.

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    • 2004 was the year I “met” Shahrukh, and looking at this I can see why everyone I knew was so excited about him. Main Hoon Na, Kal Ho Na Ho, K3G had all just come out on DVD, and Swades and Veer-Zaara were arriving in theaters. I remember my roommate coming back from the weekend all excited about Swades and eager to watch it again. Oh, and this confirms that Paheli must have been the first SRK movie I saw in theaters! Because it certainly wasn’t any of the others in those years. After Paheli, I missed KANK and Chak De and Billu in theaters (either because I was on school break or they didn’t play in Chicago downtown theaters, I can’t remember), but every other SRK film I saw in theaters after that. Kind of sad that I just missed that great 2003-early 2004 streak.

      On Mon, Oct 29, 2018 at 12:28 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  6. And now I am SO glad I have all of his movies and my ratings on a spreadsheet. The two top picks would be 2007 (OSO and CDI — oh, yeah, he always plays the same characters!) or 2017 (Raees and JHMS). I would go for 2007, especially if I could include RNBDJ. Three movies, 6 characters!! (I see Omi. OK, and OK/Omi as three characters in OSO.)

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    • Now, did you go for the year with the overall highest ratings, or the one with all the ratings added together? Like, if every movie of 1995 only got 2 stars, that still means 14 stars, which is more overall than 2017 assuming both films got 4 stars equaling only 8 total?

      On Mon, Oct 29, 2018 at 1:15 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  7. Dessert island
    As someone mentioned above, if we can do 12-month period instead of calendar year, I would do DZ, ADHM, Raees, JHMS, which is actually mire like a 10 month window. I find myself rewatching DZ, ADHM, and JHMS periodically anyways, I haven’t watched Raees yet but I enjoy the work of Naseer, Nawaaz, and Mahira, so it will be nice break from the others.

    Introduced to newbies

    SRK as loverboy
    2003

    Variety pack
    2004

    Newbie = Movie snob or film critic
    2006

    Newbie = Child to young adult
    2007

    Why did you cross out 1998? I wouldn’t have chosen it, except maybe for Variety Pack.

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    • I would have picked 1998 as Variety Pack/one-size fits all (love your categories by the way!). It’s got the best possible movie for film critics, the best possible movie for loverboy, and the best possible movie for children (I’ve had good luck with Duplicate with kids). I agree with all your choices, except I might combine 2007 as both child to young adult and movie snob. OSO had had surprising traction with movie snobs in my experience, it’s just such a big silly in your face over the top challenge to traditional western filmmaking.

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  8. Desert Island: We should be allowed to take 2 different options (one year = 12 months of ShahRukh young, the same for ShahRukh more recent) as he has a body of work of 26 years. If that is okay, I would choose July 1993 to June 1994 (MayaMemsaab, Baazigar, Darr, KabhiHaanKabhiNaa, Anjaam) and Nov 2012 to Oct 2013 (JabTakHaiJaan, ChennaiExpress)

    Introducing ShahRukh: That would be June 2003 to Mai 2004 (ChalteChalte, KalHoNaaHo, MainHoonNaa)

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    • If we are allowed to do any 12 month period and young and old, I think I would change my answer to get Fan through JHMS all in one go (is that 12 months?) for old, and stick with 1995 for you.

      Good choice for Introducing, and coincidentally that is right when I first met him. Now that I think about it, that era would have been a lot like the era we are in now. Coming off of a major downturn, experimenting a little and finding a new identity, the old fans are tired of him but the new fans are excited by the new stuff he is doing. So my reaction to Kal Ho Na Ho of “I have never seen something like this before, this is so exciting!” would be the same as the feeling some people are having now about JHMS. While the reaction of “same old same old, another romance” would be the same as the folks back in 2003 who were tired after KKHH and DDLJ and over it.

      On Mon, Oct 29, 2018 at 4:23 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • I looked for that but Fan is April and JHMS is August…

        My choices for the desert are made because of not so nice/emotional disturbed/angry/psychotic ShahRukh and gorgeous cinematography (and I have Juhi, Kajol, Madhuri who had more experience than him; Anushka, Deepika who he kind of introduced and Katrina who tried to resist him). In addition I have young&bold ShahRukh and bearded&sexy ShahRukh. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  9. Desert island: very easily 2001. I can watch K3G and O2K4 over and over again. Also, the bonus in taking K3G to a desert island is that I can watch it in segmants and it could feel like I am watching multiple movies: (1) the Rani portions, especially the first K3G song and Say Shava Shava; (2) the Kajol-Sharukh love story before marriage, (3) Hrithik-Kareena love story, ShahRukh-Kajol post marriage, Hrithik-Sharukh grumpy bromance before Shahrukh knows Hrithik is his brother; and (4) final portion where everyone is reunited. With regards to O2K4, while Shahrukh is a bit of a jerk, I can tolerate him, the kids are really cute, and I love Juhi.

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    • Excellent point about K3G! Plus, maximum songs if you need your desert island energy boosts, and if you get tired of SRK, you’ve got Hrithik and Amitabh right there as well.

      On Mon, Oct 29, 2018 at 5:59 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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    • Finally, someone else who likes O2K4, and loves Juhi! Not to detract from Shah Rukh month, but what are your favorite performances of hers? Shah Rukh/Juhi are my favorite jodi (I am a silly fangirl despite being middle-aged).

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      • Oh man, I have so many Juhi favorites besides O2K4! Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak, Hum Hai Rahi Pyar ke, Bol Radha Bol, Asian, Phir Bhi Dil Hai Hindustani, Yes Boss, Daulat Ki Jung, and Jhut Bole Kawa Kate. There are many others I like but don’t love (most because the hero may annoy me but I still love Juhi), including Mr. and Mrs Khiladi, Raju Ban Gaya Gentleman, Ishq, Duplicate, and Salaam E Ishq. And one in a completely separate catagory that I can’t describe is My Brother Nikhil. It is too sad for me to watch it a second time but I really appreciated it when I saw it. I am sure there are others I’m forgetting.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Thank you–I’m taking those as recommendations. I’ve mostly just seen her movies with Shah Rukh, except for more recent things. Did you like Gulabi Gang? Chalk N Duster? I loved her in Paheli too. Such a small role but she gave it such warmth and poignancy!

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          • Oh yay! Glad I could give you some Juhi reccomendations! Juhi was wonderful in Paheli! I haven’t watched Gulaab Gang despite Juhi and Madhuri (two of my favorites) being in it. I am sure I will watch it eventually, but I generally don’t like seeing Juhi play the villan. I really want to watch Chalk N Duster but haven’t seen it on Netflix or Amazon Prime. Is it available some where else? Also, just an FYI, my Aaina reccomendation was “autocorrected” to Asian. Silly autocorrect!

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          • Jumping in to second Aaina. It’s a great female lead film, the sister version of the traditional brother conflicts. And yes, it is all over a man, but it is SO well-acted and really lets Juhi and Amrita Singh do something different. Plus Jackie Shroff is charming.

            On Tue, Oct 30, 2018 at 1:07 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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    • Huh. I guess it depends on the circumstances. If I was meeting him as a fan, I would just say “thank you” and be grateful for the moment. If I was meeting him as a scholar, I would have a long list of deep questions (along the lines of “at what point do you feel you have a responsibility to use your fame for the common good versus protecting your popularity?”). And if I was meeting him in a social situation, I would just want to have a pleasant conversation that goes here and there about kids and favorite movies and whatever.

      To be honest, my first reaction in all 3 of those situations would probably be “ooga-booga-gargle” as I lost the ability to speak intelligently.

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