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Press reacts to MNIK

Some liked it a lot while others liked it a less. Here're reviews from Anand Bazar Patrika, Box Office India, Dainik Bhaskar, Man’s World and Afternoon.
By HT Correspondent | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON FEB 12, 2010 06:20 PM IST

Indroneil Sarkar, Anand Bazar Patrika
I didn’t like the film. I want to watch Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol come together for something more fun, more light-hearted film. My Name Is Khan was too serious. And Shah Rukh Khan’s performance was too forced.

When you watch the film, you’ll finally understand the controversy surrounding the film and its title. And frankly, I don’t think it will work in the smaller centres. There’s too much of the Muslim influence. Also, it’s too long. The flood scene in the second half could have easily been edited.

The music is disappointing given that it’s come from Shankar Ehsaan Loy and Karan Johar. My Name Is Khan is a human story. But I didn’t connect with it, I didn’t feel sorry for Rizwan Khan.

Vinod Mirani, Box Office India
I found My Name Is Khan is too long drawn. The film is set in Ameruca and deals with the problems of those settled there. Consequently, there is little connect with audience’s here since our issues are different. Also, there is too much English in the dialogue and that too could alienate a section of the audience.
Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy’s music score is disappointing too, surprising for a Karan Johar film. Usually, there is one very song that holds the film. That’s missing here. No ‘Mitwa…’ or ‘It’s the time to disco…’ no ‘Pretty woman..’ and ‘Shawa shawa…’

Shah Rukh has worked really hard on this performance and the effort shows. But the chemistry with Kajol still works. You see the same magic when the Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenga duo are on screen together. As an Kajol is par excellence. As a director, Karan has treated the subject too leisurely, and consequently the pace slows down and the film drags at time. He’s trying to say too many things.

The after-effects of 9/11 are portrayed symbolically through a couple of characters who are roundly abused by the Americans who pass by. Eventually MNIK comes across as a pro-Muslim movie that points out that while most terrorists so far come from a particular community, it doesn’t necessarily mean that every Muslim is a terrorist.

It’s an average film, lavishly made. There is little repeat value to take people back to the theatres, again and again. It’s only every day that a film like 3 Idiots comes up and does a business of Rs 300 crore plus at the box-office.

Ajay Brahmatmaj, Dainik Bhaskar

I liked the film, My Name Is Khan worked for me. It wasn’t the easiest movie to make or the simplest role to play. Given Karan Johar’s past track record, he certainly seems to have picked a complex subject this time. And he manages to put across his points of view strongly. Emotionally too, the film manage to strike a chord.

It’s only when Karan is trying to deal with political issues of an identity crisis that he falters. Rizwan isn’t able to convey his issues convincingly enough. Still MNIK could be a landmark film and work for all those across the world who are struggling to find themselves. It could be Muslims or Arabs, actually anyone who has migrated to another country.

You can tell that Shah Rukh Khan has worked really hard on his performance. Rizwan is a strong character and likely to appeals to the audience at multiple levels.

Kajol is amazing. She sails through her performance, like water in a river, and delivers effortlessly. The story is a little weak though, and the music is not haunting enough. The lyrics aren’t memorable. Take a song like ‘Tere naina…’ What words do you recall besides.

Maithili Rao, Man’s World
It works only in the first half. Post interval there’s too much drama, in particular the flood scene. They were trying to make a hero of an ordinary man. That spoilt the effect of the first half . For me Shah Rukh Khan going to the smaller and less significant parts of America and bonding with a black family worked for me. Normally, films like these that are set in the West only show NRIs interacting with each.

I also liked the fact that Mandira, Kajol’s character, refuses to give up her pursuit of her son’s killer. The film is lengthy. It should have ended soon after the jail term. The climax is over the top. Shah Rukh as an autistic is bang on. His mannerisms are perfect.
The script was well researched. So overall, I’d say it is a good attempt. In terms of star ratings, I would give it 21/2 to three.
It makes a statement – that all Muslims are not terrorists. And something so bold a nd defining needed a star like Shah Rukh Khan to say it.

My Name Is Khan is an important film for mainstream cinema. It could have been a better film with a little more restrain It will work if people don’t watch it with preconceived notions. If they go to see a Kajol-Shah Rukh love story, another Kuch Kuch Hota Hai they will be disappointed. Be warned: My Name is Khan is not your typical Karan Johar film.

Deepa Gahlot, Afternoon
My Name Is Khan is not a film that will evoke an instant reaction. It’s not a film that you can dismiss lightly. It calls for reflection. It will spark off plenty of discussion and debate.

The film makes a point, that’s for sure. If I have any quibbles, it’s that Karan Johar is laying it on too thick. After a while, instead of feeling sympathetic, you are put off.

— Compiled by Prema K, Hiren Kotwani, Serena Menon

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