Farah Khan, a celebrated choreographer known for her wild imaginations and breath-taking dance moves that can put the celluloid on fire, made her directorial debut in 2004 with Main Hoon Na, a potboiler starring Shah Rukh Khan, Sushmita Sen, Zayed Khan and Amrita Rao. Since this was one of the first few instances of a choreographer turning into a director, the cine-goers were prepared for thunderous music and maddening dance pieces. Khan’s inventiveness knows no boundaries and she surely knows how to elevate the album by infusing the right dose of masala and mania.
It’s one of those very few films that marries almost every possible genre and creates an entertaining and engaging potpourri. Patriotism- Check, Comedy- Check, Drama- Check, Love Story- Check. And Khan presented her leading man nobody imagined before. SRK effortlessly carried the amalgamation of all the genres in one single film and oozed enigma and emotions to the role of Major Ram Prasad Sharma. He goes back to college as an Undercover Student and is enamoured by the Chemistry teacher, Chandni, played by the ever-gorgeous and intimidating Sushmita Sen, who never looked this sizzling and scintillating before or after. Their chemistry is one of the best we have seen at the movies. And a lot of humor was derived out of Khan’s sheer shyness upon seeing her from afar. Who would have imagined sexiness and scintillation could be created out of shyness?
It was also surprising to see Khan’s ease with action and the way she handled the combat between the leading man and Suniel Shetty, the film’s antagonist. There was also a running track about SRK’s illegitimacy and his attempts to reunite with his estranged mother and brother, played by Kirron Kher and Zayed Khan.
It was to the credit of the director’s understanding of the genre of Masala cinema as an audience that she was able to create such an entertaining film. It was also to the credit of SRK that he displayed a variety of emotions in one single film and showed he can attempt possibly any genre cinema has to offer. The staging of the gags was equally memorable. The perpetually forgetful Boman Irani to the English-obsessed Bindu to the forever spitting Satish Shah, we continue to revel in the irreverence of this potboiler and its idiosyncratic characters.
Unlike some of the bygone blockbusters, Main Hoon Na has aged well and the freshness and fragrance of the world Farah Khan created in 2004, still remains spectacular. This arguably is one of Shah Rukh Khan’s greatest entertainers!
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