Kisi Ka Bhai Kisi Ki Jaan
Rating: * ½
To call Bhaijaan’s latest Eid offering a movie would be an insult to his superpowers as an entertainer. Salman Bhaijaan aims for a lot more than mere entertainment. He has a message of one-ness and coolness for the populace, the Salmaniacs who flock to his films not to see him act(God forbid) but to witness a messianic presence on the screen.
In the first ten minutes he makes a racist joke and endorses a cola before asking each of the baddies their family details.This is not a hero. This is God on a bad-hair day.
Yes, miracles do happen, and Salman Bhaijaan is one of them. His entry into the film is a miracle moment. He jumps from a roof , but only after taking off his jacket and then he puts it on as he lands on the ground below where his three brothers Ishq(Raghav Juyal), Moh(Jassi Gill) and Love(Siddharth Nigam) wait for him in collective bhakti.
Yes, that is what the three brothers are called.I kid you not. Ishq ,Moh and Love love Sukoon(Shehnaaz Gill), Muskaan(Palak Tiwari) and Chahat(Vinali Bhatnagar). All six have nothing more to do except hang around in the background for Bhaijaan’s self laudatory fights . Every few minutes someone or the other reminds us how great Bhaijaan is.
Bhaijaan himself takes a break from the taandav of panegyrics to shower praise on Telugu star-actor Venkatesh at one point in the aimless narration , for being a great family man , etc,.This, I suspect, is Salman’s way of thanking the Telugu superstar for blindly agreeing to be a part of what is basically one man’s desire to self-pleasure himself in full public view for two hours and twenty-two minutes.
Salman ‘Bhaijaan’ Khan preens, smirks, blushes(in front of the go-getting heroine Bhagya played by Pooja Hegde trying desperately to behave like Deepika Padukone in Chennai Express), roars(while swooping down on the villains) weeps(when Venkatesh is humiliated before the archvillain) and finally giggles when it’s time to tie the knot. But not before gallons of bloodshed in fights that are staged so clumsily they look like a mock-drill for a village-level wrestling competition.
The villains range from Abhimanyu Singh and Vijender Singh(both trying to snarl their way through ill-written roles) to South’s distinguished actor Jagapathi Babu who plays some kind of a mentally deranged automaton on a vendetta spree.
Somewhere at the start of this mirth and mayhem spree(the joke goes on for two hours and 22 minutes) Bhagyashree(Salman’s first heroine from Maine Pyar Kiya) shows up with her real-life husband whom she reverently refers to as ‘Himalayji’(Salman loves these pati-vrata type of women) and their son Abhimanyu Dassani who seems to have nothing better to do, also shows up.
I would like to remind director Farhad Samji(yes, there is a director) that Abhimanyu Dassani has a sister. Leaving her out amounts to gender discrimination.
I am not sure of why they are in the film or what their function is. The first-half is set in a busti where every actor(including poor Satish kaushik in a disgraceful farewell role) screams and mumbles ‘Bhaijaan’ every few minutes. In the second-half Bhaijaan and his brothers proceed to Hyderabad to save Venkatesh and his family(Bhoomika Chawla, Rohini Hattangadi,etc all reduced to junior artistes).
But who will save this catastrophic self-destructive travesty of megalomaniacal dimensions ? Kisi Ka Bhai Kisi Ki Jaan is not just any bad Bollywood product. It is especial . It stars Salman Bhaijaan. It glorifies his stardom to the point of shameless hegemony. Every actor, and there are dozens and dozens , seems to be in a competition for hamming. Our Bhai is not even part of the competition. He doesn’t even try to act. He doesn’t need to.