To all those souls who grew up spending an agonising 30 minutes every evening watching Doordarshan for want of a better alternative, here is your chance to exorcise the agony of those two words — Krrishi Darshan!
In the world of entertainment there are three instances of father-son relationships that make me go back to my dad and want to be his little boy — Life is Beautiful, Finding Nemo, and Hrithik in papa Rakesh Roshan’s films. Perhaps that’s why no one else presents Hrithik the way his dad does — for not only does he (Roshan senior) make films as a business, he also discharges his responsibility of presenting his son in the best possible manner. The son obliges. And together they don’t disappoint.
So is Krrish a great movie?
But is Krrish India’s first ‘superhero’?
This is a nonsense question that pays obeisance to the self-delusionary dreams that America’s entertainment industry (first through comics and then through Hollywood and television) conjured as part of a packaged-in-candyfloss-anti-establishment expression: There is crime/chaos in our world. The bad guys have become very powerful. Our system/police is unable to save us(/US). Enter superhero. Someone with extra-normal capabilities — but who is one of us(/US). To begin with he had to have a fancy-dress with accessories — cape, hood, mask, gloves et al. Superman, Batman, Spiderman blah blah.
Then came flims like Rambo and Die-Hard. Ok wait, I am digressing — Rambo, Die-Hard, Under-Siege, Lethal Weapon are not ‘superheros’, right? They don’t wear costumes, and while the feats they perform are fantastic, they are just demonstrations of efficient (but often logically untenable) human capabilities. These are things every ‘hero’ (ok, now emerges the hierarchy) in every culture does. Even Sanjeev Kumar and Rajesh Khanna have done it!
Coming back to Krrish. The special effects are good and even though the cynics say that these are not original (or adequate), they make for good viewing, more so with Hrithik as the protagonist. Hrithik is the ONLY person who could pull this off, with earnestness and purity. Remember Shah Rukh Khan in Badshah? The only way he could do such stunts was under the garb of comedy. “Just imagine” (quotation marks because that’s a phrase from the attempted comedy track of the film) Abhishek Bachchan (with his limited abilities yet currently over-reaping the rewards as if to compensate for the initial under-reaping) in this role? Or Aamir Khan? Or Akshay Kumar? Ajay Devgan? Anyone? If there were ever an occasion that should deliver a few left-hook punches to the self-esteem of the other filmstars (note I am avoiding the word actors) in India — it would be the sight of Hrithik in Krrish! He rocks (besides leaping over them)! And if one were to accept Aishwarya Rai as one of the few ‘international’ stars we have managed to front to the world — Hrithik certainly is the male equivalent of Aishwarya!
The rest of the film predicatbly doesn’t have much to talk about. Music, Priyanka Chopra, Naseer, or Rekha all do their bits to the extent they could have every time they appear on screen. But in terms of appearance on screen — the number of brand placements take the Britannia cake! (Ok that was my attempt as brand placement within a phrase!)
- So like in Koi Mil Gaya, here too, Hrithik drinks Horlicks — never shown, just mentioned and the Horlicks jar on the dining table appearing some dozen times! (Sadly the jar of jam next to it had no label on it. Wasted business opportunity…)
- Rekha washes clothes with Tide — holding the Tide packet at a very camera-friendly and therfore unsubtle angle. The same Tide packet in later scenes is kept (again at a camera-friendly angle) in the kitchen on the shelf with washed utensils!
- The young Krrishna (see my derivative spelling) draws sketches with Faber-Castel pencil colours!
- Honey (one of the protagonists) holds a tube of BoroPlus close enough to her face for many in the audience to observe and remark, “Look, BoroPlus”. (The same reaction incidentally was there for all other brands)
- Hero Honda sponsors the ‘Bombay Circus’ in Singapore, where some crucial action takes place.
- Considering the number of times Samsung cameras and mobiles are shown in the film it is surprising they didn’t carry a TV-kind of “this film is sponsored by Samsung” announcement. Oops, did I just give away a business idea?
- Perhaps the most subtle placement was for Himani Navratan Tel, on the hoarding of an STD phone booth.
- One instance where the brand manager would have had some answering to do to his bosses would be the heroine popping Vicks into her mouth. You blink it and you miss it. (Mr/Ms. Vicks Brand Manager, you could cite this post in your defence — and I do have a sore-throat once in a while… Right TG?)
- How many buses have you seen with Siyaram’s advertisements on them? Here you do. Here the brand manager would score some brownie points — 3-4 angles, good ROI!
- So what if Star TV is based out of Hong Kong and not Singapore. But I am getting into illogical nitpicking now, right?
- Hen : lays eggs :: Priyanka : Lay’s Chips
- Singapore Tourism for advertising a city where they show thugs trying to steal Hrithik’s bags upon arrival; where gangs on motorcycles run amok, where the only help available for a raging fire is no fire-brigade, but Krrish!
Ok, all said and done, thought and written, barked and bitten — you must see Krrish. Remember you have to exorcise the agony of that Krishi Darshan through this Krrishi Darshan!