There is a kind of Salman Khan movie that one leaves one’s brain behind and still doesn’t enjoy (Kick, Ready). The king of Eid is back with his latest offering, and thankfully, this one falls in the “watchable AND enjoyable” genre.
What is it with Salman and Eid? Well, a trend that he started in 2009 continues till this day, with other actors following suit booking their own holidays. So it’s SRK in Diwali, Aamir on Christmas and Akshay on Republic Day, leaving the other poor souls to scamper for the scraps. Nevertheless, this trend has resulted in lesser movie clashes, big bucks and the Rajinikanth-style Bhai-mania. For Bhai is a different genre now. And boy do his movies rake in the money!
So what’s Sultan all about? Take a blender, pour in a generous portion of Rocky, a dash of Chak De India, a teaser of Dangal and a whole dollop of Bhai, blend and serve with garnish of Anushka and Randeep. Toppings include an above-average soundtrack and a whole lot of videshi fighters all willing to fight the Bhai in the Mumbai (and we all know how that would end up)…
Nevertheless, Sultan is enjoyable. Very. Ignore the obvious liberties taken with the story (I mean really, one month is all it takes to dhobi-pacchad seasoned wrestlers??), this is a bhai-story after all. Surprisingly, the second half is better than the first, with the MMA action taking center stage and Sultan conquering his demons and well..emerging victorious (what, you really thought Bhai could lose??).
Salman brings to the table an honesty that was last seen in Dabangg, and to a certain extent in Bajrangi Bhaijaan. He owns the role, and looks the part. Actually, I couldn’t imagine anyone else playing this role. No, not even Akshay with his martial arts background. This needed a beefed up body and a humble yet fierce look, that Salman perfects to the T. The signature style of his is clap worthy, hell, whistle worthy too! A brief part in the first half has him relive his Dabangg-esque swagger, but the second half is completely the warm hearted Bhai that he is portrayed to be.
Anushka is perfect in her role, and speaks volumes without even saying a word in some scenes. She could have put on some weight for this though. Randeep Hooda is seen very little, but leaves his stamp in his 5-minute role. The supporting cast, like in all recent Bhai films, is exceptional.
Sultan is long at 2 hours 48 minutes. But boring moments are few, and the culmination is satisfying. I do smell a whiff of a sequel in the air as well. Come out fast, Sultan 2, we are anxiously waiting for you. Rolled up sleeves n all.