New Delhi: Any one who has watched Dabangg will undoubtedly agree that the cop-boiler is Salman Khan’s best entertainer till date, each frame vying with the next to take a ridiculously implausible plot line forward.
But even as Khan romanced a reticent Sonakshi Sinha and bashed up bad guys in physics-defying stunts, he redefined the rules that separate entertainment from auteur.
There is a difference between good acting and a performance. Khan’s acting in the National Award winning action comedy was ordinary at best, but that he enjoyed himself while filming for Dabangg was evident in every scene. Dabangg was a stupendous ‘performance’ worthy of an actor who has massive hits to his credit in a career spanning two and half decades.
Khan’s portrayal of a goofy but good-natured cop became such a hit that his friend of many years Chunky Pandey demanded royalty for the use of the name Chulbul Pandey and the initials CP in the film Dabangg. Inspector Chulbul Pandey became a household name among his millions of fans.
India’s young, semi-urban audience base identified with the fart-joke cracking, crude but adorable character that Chulbul Pandey promised to be. It was the very antithesis of Aman Mehra, the role of the slick fiancé of Kajol in Kuchh Kuchh Hota Hai that Khan won a Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actor. Khan’s extended cameo was applauded by critics for mature acting.
Acting vs performance
But it has been a while since Khan has underplayed a role that rarely ever suits his extrovert nature. One of Bollywood’s first actors to take fitness seriously and making it his showcase, Khan is known to choose roles that give him a chance to test his comic talent and show off his chiseled body than act.
His performance card over the years is dotted with many B- roles and even the occasional B+ and rarely A- outings. But Khan has never regretted doing cerebral roles in small budget films.
As he confessed recently in an interview, directors do not approach him for intense acting, but expect him to pull off what hi contemporaries cannot; the big-budget romantic comedies such as Partner, Ready and Salaam-e-Ishq.
The epic Veer, set in the pre-colonial Pindari Rajasthan, was a disaster and London Dreams got mixed response, with Ajay Devgn and Khan’s acting panned by critics as “dull” and “foolish”. God Tussi Great Ho, a Bruce Almighty spin-off, tanked and Khan who plays God, literally, was restrained and stiff. Mai Aur Mrs Khanna did no better.
Coming of age
Post Wanted, which was 2009’s biggest hits, Khan came on his own playing a gangster (Radhe) and silenced critics who hounded him after a string of lukewarm comedies and bad romantic dramas. But then came Dabangg, turning the tide for Khan who finally found out that the masses simply do not care if he acted well or not in the macho pot-boiler as long as he gave them wholesome entertainment to take home.
Ready was a repeat of Dabangg but here Khan restricted himself to romancing Asin and plotting to bring his fragmented and discordant family together. His acting was average but his machismo was unrestrained. It remains to be seen if Khan would fall prey to repetition of a genre he has set out to exploit to the maximum.
Link : http://ibnlive.in.com/news/salman-khan-week-kamaal-kartey-ho-pandey-ji/174690-8-66.html