Movie Review | Jai Ho

I watched Jai Ho yesterday; my first movie in the theatre for 2014, and according to my goals, I am supposed to write a review. Not because I am an expert on reviewing movies, but as a writing exercise. But before I say I what I thought of the movie – whether good or bad, I have some things to say about others’ opinions that have been all over the social media. (I don’t visit twitter often, so when I say social media, I mean Facebook.)
A lot of people have been quick to point out that it’s a waste of money and imitating a bit of the movie, have passed on the message that they would advise others to not watch the movie, like they’re doing some social service. I also read somewhere that Jai Ho has employed several unemployed actors, who, if not for the movie, would be doing God-knows-what. In short, they were saying ‘I wasted money; please don’t make the same mistake.’
What I’m about to write next, may sound like I am offended by all the criticism and negative talk, and that’s purely because to some extent, I am. So like you had your opinion of the movie, I had mine – of the movie and your comments. Let’s see what you think about that.
Let me ask you one question? When you watch a Salman Khan movie, what do you expect, especially if you’ve seen movies like Ready, Wanted, Dabangg, Bodyguard, Ek Tha Tigerand many more? Do you expect that everything will make sense? That laws of physics and medicine will apply? That law will apply? Because if you do, you’re wrong even before you start watching the movie and maybe you shouldn’t even be there!
Jai Ho was a movie made with a message. I’m guessing people have a problem with how the message was conveyed. Was it unrealistic? Yes. Was it over-dramatic? Yes. Could such a thing ever happen in real life? Maybe not. But that’s what all movies are about!! It’s fiction. It is supposed to entertain you and if you’re looking for an extremely serious and sensible movie, and are quick to point out that no one should waste money on it, the irony here, is that within three days of the movie’s release, you’ve hurried to watch it and are passing judgement without really understanding what the movie was about.
When I read some of the reviews, it was as if people already had a problem with the movie before even watching it and rushed to the theatre to watch it only to make a bullet list of everything that’s wrong with it. Well thank you for contributing to the huge first week collections the movie’s going to have. It’s a shame you didn’t want to be a part of it.
That said, let’s look at what’s good about the movie and why (in my opinion it was made the way it was.) I am not going to critically analyse the direction, the screenplay and all those other big words, simply because I do not understand them, but as a part of the audience, what matters to me is what I take back, what I will remember once I am out of the theatre – the experience, the memories and the (a) message (if there is.)

Experience

Watching a Salman Khan movie in the theatre is an experience in itself. Not that I have seen many in the theatre (I can recall only Ready and Ek Tha Tiger – which didn’t get that reaction), Jai Ho has been that kind of a movie. It’s amazing to be surrounded by people who love him – who will clap and whistle uninhibitedly at every amazing dialogue and every fierce blow the bad guy gets. The energy in the theatre is contagious and I found myself clapping (I couldn’t whistle even if my life depended on it) and cheering loudly and I have to admit, had I been sitting at home, I would have just looked on with big eyes, that’s it. Being in the theatre was like being a part of a cult, a powerful group of people who love the star and love everything he does.

Memories

The entire experience has ensured that I will remember the movie only for the good things (even though there were some flaws) and I am okay with that. Would I watch it again if I had the chance? Sure! Would I pay to watch it again? Most probably not? Was the one time worth it? Totally!

Message

Minor Spoiler Alert.
This movie has a huge message and at this point I find it hard to not compare it with another movie, because that will make explaining a few things easier.
First of all, the message in this movie is ‘What goes around comes around’ (apparently borrowed from a Hollywood movie, but I’m not sure) and ‘We can make the world a better place by doing little things to help others in need.’ This was conveyed by the very macho Jai Agnihotri, ex-military tough guy, by helping anyone and everyone he could, right from a handicapped girl to a little baby. And if anyone thanked him, he simply asked them to help three other people and in return, ask those three to help three more people and keep the chain going.
It’s pretty simple thing really and honestly, if the movie was just about that, how many people would walk out of the theatre enlightened? Hardly.
Let’s look at another movie with a message – 3 Idiots; the message being – a degree is overrated, knowledge and its application, are important. And forget what the world expects out of you, do what you love, what makes you happy.
With a majority of our masses uneducated and in rural areas who haven’t seen the inside of a college, let alone an engineering college, how are they expected to understand the complicated life of engineering students and their struggles? There’s a reason why that story was originally written as a book, because the people reading it, would get it.
But Salman has fans all over the country and of the three Khans; he’s the most popular among the masses. Simply put, people love to see him jump, fight and keep hitting the bad guy in spite of being injured and still emerge victorious. In reality, that’s impossible! I am completely with everyone else on that! But look at the bigger picture here. The masala in the movie is just to keep the audience hooked, while the message is being conveyed. It was just two different ways of conveying a message – one works for some, the other works for the rest. If we all just focussed on what the movie was about and take the good from it, we are all winners here really.
Yes there were too many actors here, but there are many characters in every movie! The only reason we are able to point them out here is that, instead of extras, these are well known actors. And let me tell you, every single one of the characters has some reason to be important enough, some part to play. Except Nausheed Ali and that Just Mohabbat wala guy.
Back to those who have only negative things to say about the movie, here’s my two cents.
1.       Someone could go ahead and make the most sensible movie and people will still find a way to find faults with it. So every negative thing you have to say about it, is probably expected.
2.       It’s in our nature to show others down when we can’t do shit, ourselves. Those who thought it was a waste of time and money – why don’t you write a good script. Let’s see what others have to say about that? In fact, let’s see if anyone is willing to make that into a movie.
3.       Next time, do everyone else a favour and watch every movie without any expectations. In my opinion, that has helped me enjoy even some of the not-so-great movies. We watch movies to enjoy ourselves and be entertained. Do yourself a favour and leave all your problems at home instead of taking your frustration out on the movie. You’ll see what entertainment is.

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