Being from the southern part of the country, my favorite stars have always been Mohanlal, Rajnikant, Mammootty, and others primarily from the southern film industry. I love movies, including Hindi cinema, but none of the Hindi superstars have ever been my personal favorites.
I’ve often felt that Hindi superstars lack raw talent, but I’ve always enjoyed several films by Amitabh Bachchan, Shahrukh Khan, Aamir Khan, Akshay Kumar, and a few others because they provided me with great entertainment. Movies like “Chak De India” and “Swades” from Shahrukh Khan have particularly appealed to me. So, if I have enjoyed Shahrukh movies in the past, why have I decided not to watch “Jawan”?
Reason 1: Anti-Bharat Propaganda Machinery
My perception of Shahrukh Khan and Aamir Khan changed significantly in 2015. The current national government had just taken office, and there was a concerted effort from the liberal ecosystem to portray the majority community as intolerant and the new government as anti-minority. As a national icon, perhaps some of us had excessively high expectations of Shahrukh.
This is what he said: “there is intolerance, there is extreme intolerance… there is, I think… there is growing intolerance.” He also supported those who were returning awards to protest against intolerance. The fact that Shahrukh joined those who were trying to malign the nation and create instability in the country came as a rude shock to several people, including myself.
Personally, if I don’t like an actor in real life, I can’t enjoy their movies on screen either. I decided that day not to watch Shahrukh’s movies going forward unless I was proven wrong or convinced that he was not a part of the anti-Bharat ecosystem. The wait still continues, and therefore, “Jawan” is one more Shahrukh movie that I have chosen to boycott.
Reason 2: Udayanidhi Stalin and “Jawan”
I’m sure many of you are aware that Udayanidhi Stalin’s Red Giant Movies is distributing “Jawan” in Tamil Nadu. The fact that the movie has any connection with a company owned by someone who publicly talks about eradicating my culture is reason enough for me not to watch this movie. Why would I allow someone to profit with my own money and then use that money to attack my culture? Therefore, I decided not to watch “Jawan.”
Reason 3: Paid Movie Reviews
Let me ask you all one thing. Have you read a single unbiased movie review of “Jawan”? A quick Google search floods you with search results praising Shahrukh Khan for delivering an amazing performance in an action-packed mass movie. It’s virtually impossible to find a single unbiased movie review. By unbiased, I don’t mean a bad review; I simply wanted the review to be balanced.
After some searching, I found three reviews that convinced me that the movie didn’t deserve my money or my time. Here are excerpts from those reviews.
This is an excerpt from a review by the Khaleej Times, UAE:
“Jawan is the kind of film where everyone walks in slow motion to Anirudh Ravichander’s thunderous music. It’s also the film where your disbelief should not just be suspended but completely banished. Do not ask questions or even wonder ‘how do these things happen?’ You need to just surrender as one unbelievable sequence after another unfolds, often without a shred of logic (sample this: a doctor checks the pulse of a character and announces she’s pregnant).”
Below are a couple of excerpts from a review by Galatta: “Because it tries to pack in so much (instead of following a single thread of villainy), ‘Jawan’ lacks the focus and the emotional impact of the odd-numbered Shankar films.”
“But as always with these ‘mass’ films, some of us will come away with this feeling: all those crores, and they couldn’t buy themselves a decent script. (PS: ‘mass movies’ need good writing, too.).”
DailyO-MSN called the movie, “a bloated spectacle”. These are a few excerpts from their review: “
The film’s overindulgence in spectacle, melodrama, and exposition obstructs its ability to deliver a nuanced message.” “Despite moments of promise and a commendable endeavor to address pressing societal concerns, ‘Jawan’ falls short of its lofty ambitions.”
“We’re going with 3 out of 5 stars for ‘Jawan.’” I was told that the movie has several comical action scenes. Someone told me that Shahrukh gets injured after a 10,000-foot fall in the movie. I’m not sure if this is true. Can someone confirm this?
Reason 4: Subtle Political Messaging
So, the protagonist is fighting “social injustice.” And apparently, there is one dialogue: “Puchho usse ki mere liye agle panch saal mein kya karoge? Agar parivaar mein koi bimar ho jaaye to uske ilaaj ke liye kya karoge? Mujhe naukri dilaane ke liye kya karoge? Desh ko aage badhaane ke liye kya karoge?”
It’s true that these are pertinent questions. Many of us asked these questions in 2014, and then elected the current central government, giving them two terms. Since many of us are happy, we might consider giving the government another term. Is that the message Shahrukh tries to deliver? Well, he lifts up his palm, showing his five fingers, in a subtle manner, indicating whom to vote for. Several X-Twitter handles of the main opposition party were ecstatic with this subtle political messaging.
As for me, a person who can’t see the positive transformation the nation has witnessed in the last 9 years and instead wants to pull down this government with manipulative techniques like this, does not deserve a single penny from my pocket.
Should you boycott the movie?
Of course, this is not a call to boycott Jawan. But before you invest your hard-earned money in anything, always think about whether it’ll come back to harm you in any way. You are the best judge!