My Name is Khan: Movie Review

Want to know how is My Name is Khan? Go to Google and start typing, “My Name is Khan and ” Stop. You will see the first suggestion there. My Name is Khan and I am not a Terrorist.¬†Yes, you get an idea about the movie.

The best thing about My Name is Khan is that finally Karan Johar moves over himself. With the same Shahrukh Khan and Kajol with whom he made his debut film Kuch Kuch Hota Hai. Though this very fact makes me wonder how much of his typical audiences are going to like it. Who knows what’s on girls’ minds after all?

To start with, I do not think My Name is Khan deserves five stars, but certainly the one star there, Shahrukh Khan, has worked well enough to make it a very watchable movie. At the same time, Karan Johar comes up with a good story and works even better on it. Additionally, you have some wonderful music that suits the film, thanks to Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy and their selection of singers, be it Shafaqat Amanat Ali Khan, Rahat Fateh Ali Khan, Ustad Rashid Khan or even Adnan Sami Khan. Not to mention Shankar himself. No, I didn’t forget Richa Sharma and Shreya. They are great too.

My Name is Khan is exactly what the name claims, an all in all Shahrukh Khan show. Kajol gives a great performance there which comes naturally, but it’s Shahrukh who has the limelight over him. And while he does a role that doesn’t come naturally and demands a lot of homework, Shahrukh seems to have tried hard and worked hard, as he gives a lovable performance. The good thing about his acting is that he is quite consistent throughout the movie except for some rare points where he seems to pull a sentence or two a bit too much. Much better than I had expected anyway.

Talking of the movie in terms of Story and Screenplay, My Name is Khan has a lot of material, probably a bit too much in places. While the movie moves slow and builds a good rapport in the first half, the second half doesn’t cash it so good as one might expect as Khan keeps on going one thing after the other. In fact, in this part Forrest Gump comes back to me even though I had completely forgot about the alleged similarities of topics. The African connection adds to the Gump effect. Basically the film moves you but in parts. The story is good but the movie didn’t cast a spell on me, the one that lasts after the movie too. I wonder if it will turn like Kal ho naa ho which I like more every time I watch it.

Moving towards technical aspects (or whatever I know of them) My Name is Khan is quite good. The movie has some crisp editing. The first song is introduced quite late and all the songs in the movie fit really well in their locations. In fact all the numbers from the soundtrack don’t even show up in the movie as Shankar Mahadevan Suraj Jaggan’s Rang de is nowhere and a great song like Allah hi Rehem manages to find place only at the end credits. Also, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy’s background music is wonderful. But Ravi K Chandran goes below expectations in cinematography, especially at some specific points where you expect something really big.

One interesting thing about the movie is that Karan has gone over the top while selecting his actors. While the movie is a Shahrukh Khan show, Kajol doesn’t have all that you expected in her role. In fact some other actress could have done it too, though that would reduce the charisma that Kajol brings with her. Zarina Wahab is a perfect choice for Khan’s mother and so is her son, played by Tanay Chheda. Jimmy Shergill has a small role as brother while Sonya Jehan performs her act gracefully. Arjun Mathur gets yet another¬†role of an achiever in the making. But what made me wonder was the small role that is played by Vinay Pathak. And then there is veteran S M Zaheer in a nobody’s role and even for the smallest role there is Navneet Nishan. Still, the overall cast of the film is good and mostly effective.

Overall, My Name is Khan is something that lifts both Shahrukh Khan and Karan Johar a level up. The movie is good and certainly worth a watch. If not for the story and it’s treatment, watch it for Shahrukh Khan’s acting. And not just his name.

PS: Just realized, Shahrukh doesn’t spread his hands anywhere in the movie. Now that’s another thing positive about the movie.

Author: Harshit

Madman. So-called Computer Engineer. Hindi Music Freak. Hindi Movie Buff. Thinker. Reader. Critic. Blogger. PJist. (bath)room Singer. Madman.

5 thoughts on “My Name is Khan: Movie Review”

  1. The dialogues in the movie are good too. Some of them really drive home a point. But what really disappointed me was the scene in the mosque. How can they show a person in a mosque recruiting terrorists by using religion? Isn’t that offensive enough attract some sort of action from the censor board?

  2. @Shishir

    Thanks for reminding about the dialogs. I missed while writing. My opinion about the dialogs is mixed. In some points dialogs are really good as they convey the matter n are natural, but in some places dialogs look like they’re trying to make it a big, larger than life as they say. And yes, I am not talking of My Name is Khan and I am not a terrorist. In fact SRK’s most dialogs were good.

    Regarding the mosque scene, I guess the point taken is right n it starts okay but the way they have made things too clear, that’s strange. It should have been more discreet and understood than so loud, at least. Though I don’t think the point will attract Censor board’s action, I think the scene, in the way it has been shown, is not the most realistic one.

  3. i believe they showed that to show all spectrums of good and evil. they emphasized on how the lady with christian beliefs was someone who still showed him lessons in life although she was of a different faith. khan and his family were a testament that being a muslim didn’t equal being a terrorist or being a bad person and that although it may not seem realistic to you there may be a mosque or a church or any place of worship who does use the word of G*d to promote evil or to do evil. But as a whole, as a community, as a world it’s sad to say. regardless of our faiths violence and war seems to still prevail.

  4. I really think that MNIK was made for Muslims and that too for Muslims who live abroad, particularly in America. I think it really hit home in this sense because it portrays the difficulties Muslims faced after 9/11.

    I too felt that the film was too slow at times. Srk did an amazing job but it was not easy to watch him that way. It took a while to get used to his character and to appreciate what he had actually accomplished in the film. I think Kajol was underplayed and could have done so much more with her role had she been allowed.

    I loved the slight humor, especially the “can we have sex please” part and when Kajol and Srk bless their son back to back, it was funny.

  5. I felt Karan Johar should have stayed within the border of New York for this movie. Most of the bad reports about attack on Muslims came from that state after 9/11. California has huge Muslim community and unless you go inland, there is very little room for discrimination against Muslims. The whole bullying scene which takes place in high school is too unrealistic. Yes, we have racial violence among teens here, but its formula remains the same like war between Mexicans and Afro Americans, between Afghans and Punjabi guys. I also thought Karan was giving wrong info on what teachers teach about Islam in an American classroom. A few months after 9/11, we had to move to Kansas because of my dad’s new job. The high school was totally new to me. But there, even the Jewish teachers taught to us very politely about Islam. Whenever they were in doubt about something they asked me questions like a good human would do. I finished my high school in California. I was totally new there, but I saw 0 intolerance there for me. The kids were so cool. 9/11 or not, the worst thing happens to Hinduism here. In my history class, for no reason we were taught about caste system and not just teachers, but also students who made fun of Hindu Gods and Goddesses. It got even worse once I went to college. I felt sad for the Hindu students who had to hide their faces when profesors joked about Krishna and his Gopis, Shiva’s clothes and so on.

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