Monday, April 11, 2011

The K Kingdom

I know that they are currently one of the most talked about people in our film industry but no, this title is not inspired by either of KJo or Ekta Kapoor.

It’s about the kingdom which has been created and cleverly ruled by the three most desired Khans of Hindi cinema. They have ruled our senses and emotions for over more than two decades and at least one of them has tickled the fantasies of every girl and woman in our country or been a heroic macho figure for boys and men.

Salman Khan has single handedly driven the gym industry in our country and literally pumped up the image of Indian men which otherwise was pictured with pot bellies, hint of boobs and of course acres of hair (and by hair I do not mean those on the head). SRK has epitomized romance even in the dull lives of middle class eves. He has occupied the imaginations of men and women with equal penchant with every girl secretly wishing to get wooed by a man like SRK and every boy desiring to be a charming lover like him. Aamir Khan has very astutely weaved a thinking genre in Hindi movies. He has constantly stirred our emotions and pinched our souls to ponder over issues which are obliviously ignored by us as a nation together. Not to forget his efforts of converting kissing in our movies from Haw to Wah (of course the legacy is well carried forward by Emraan Hashmi and several other actors now). From Juhi, Karishma, Sonali and Rani, Aamir has sealed every actress’s lips, quite literally.

Binding these men together is one common factor – Khan. Apart from this there is nothing similar in their approach towards their work, life or common junta like us.

My first memory of Salman is from the movie Maine Pyaar Kiya released in 1989. I was barely six years old then. I have come a long way from being a toddler to being a writer but the magic of Salman still remains the same. Of course now his shirts have come off his body and most of his ex girl friends are married to someone else. But there is something genuine about his affection and warmth which draws people towards him; people who otherwise can only relate to him on the silver screens. The name Prem gained a lofty meaning with his portrayal as against the image of a rapist played by Prem Chopra. This brat of Hi-Fi has swept all hearts on small screen with Dum of his uncanny wits and become the Boss in no time. Are baba, Hi-Fi is what this bad boy prefers to call Bollywood…a short version for Hindi Films. Well this handsome hunk isn’t all about looks. What say ladies?

Dimpled cheeks, ruffled hair and a stammering voice – This isn’t a description which you would like to fall in love with but this is a man who has redefined love and romance like no one else has done before. Anyone who watched Circus and Fauji wouldn’t have thought that this guy with his boyish charm would one day rule our entertainment industry. If it was not love then most certainly it was the idea of falling in love which filled every girl’s eyes with dreams and churned her stomach with anxiety every time a Raj or Rahul came sizzling on 70mm screen with SRK. His conviction and passion made his meta-physical presence also felt by the throbbing hearts of teenagers. He was the first hero in mid 90s who portrayed negative shades in movies like Darr, Bazigar, Anjaam and Ram Jaane and won millions of hearts with his effervescence. He was the first male actor to appear in a Lux soap ad (all other Lux ads have leading beauties like Sridevi, Kareena, Hema Mailini etc) and seduce women. His six pack abs in Om Shanti Om made a statement in Hindi film industry almost burgeoning a trend. He has constantly explored men’s sexuality and titillated the fantasies of women with his quirky acts. It is no less than a magic how a young lad without an enviable body and killing looks has climbed the ladder of success and fame. From TVs to movies to ads, cricket and entrepreneurship, SRK has discovered many ways to keep millions of hearts hooked on to him even while he is knocking on the doors of 50.

If it wasn’t for his thoughtful mind and brooding disposition then Hindi cinema and the audience at large would have been devoid of some of the most exciting and thought provoking movies of our time. He began his career as a child artist but over the years this chocolate boy has transformed his image to think tank in an industry which mainly thrives on glamour and good looks, not that he is devoid of either. Aamir Khan is a brand which effuses intelligence, perfection and of course innovation. He has been experimental not only in his looks but also in the subject of his movies. Be it a retro theme based on pre-independence era or the current issues of patriotism and scams or sensitivity towards children, this man knows it all. His characters of Munna (Rangeela) and Rancho (3 Idiots) have got etched in our memories forever. Every time you watch his movies you start questioning yourself and wonder why you hadn’t thought about these issues in such a manner. Nothing seems to lessen his charm whether it was his nasty divorce with his first wife or his alleged interference with the film makers or his abstinence from the social circuits of film industry especially the awards. Such is the aura of this man that people from all class of society are in awe of him. Be it sporting his Ghajini hairstyle, stylish goatee from DCH or his iconic rings from Ghulam, his style has stuck with people and moved the so called callous species of politicians too. Well whoever said that good things come in small package surely knew his words.

Salman, SRK and Aamir will continue to inspire, arouse and ignite various areas of our minds but as for now these three Khans are the pioneers of our Indian Cinema and it is very likely that they would continue to rule the roost for many generations to come. So cheers to them for propelling this saga of entertainment and infusing in us the dreams of romanticism and belief that one day some Prem, Rahul, Raj or Rancho would make everything alright as someone said “..if it’s not happy, it’s not the end..” :D