With Jawan, it seems director-writer Atlee and Shah Rukh Khan will introduce the movie-buffs in the Hindi belt to the quintessential Tamil masala padam (movie).
Last Updated: 11.25 AM, Aug 31, 2023
A day after the grand pre-release event in Chennai, Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan unveiled the trailer for his upcoming movie Jawan. And looking at the trailer, it's clear that Jawan is deeply ingrained in the cinematic sensibilities that have come to define a modern-day masala Tamil padam (movie).
With Jawan, it seems director-writer Atlee will introduce the movie-buffs in the Hindi belt to the quintessential Tamil masala padam (movie). This doesn't mean that the Hindi filmmakers don't know how to make high-energy 'masala' movies. However, the South Indian cinemas, especially, the Tamil and Telugu filmmakers have perfected the art of seamlessly weaving together diverse genres, elements, and entertainment components, resulting in a compelling fusion of drama, action, romance, comedy, music, dance, and more. Bollywood has recently lagged in this aspect, creating an opportunity for South Indian films to make their mark.
Jawan is a product of Atlee's conviction
In the Hindi belt, South Indian movies have been filling the void left by the scarcity of hero-centric, grandiose narratives. It takes unwavering determination to create a masala movie. Take, for example, Riddhi Dogra's character in Jawan. She plays the mother of Shah Rukh Khan in Jawan. If Atlee had any doubts about the audience accepting this casting choice, he would not have completed the film. Such a decision stems from Atlee's belief that he could construct a narrative so expansive that viewers would simply immerse themselves in the story, casting aside questions of probability and surrendering to the spectacle. This degree of conviction has been absent in Hindi cinema of late.
However, conviction in one's vision doesn't always produce good movies. South Indian filmmakers' obsession with making high-octane mass-appeal films, often results in deeply formulaic and unwatchable commercial entertainers. For each successful film in this category, several miss the mark. Yet, when such movies do succeed, they light up every screen across the country — examples like Pushpa: The Rise, Vikram, Jailer. It's a never-ending process of trial and error. South Cinema is on top of its game by simply making more mass entertainers and broadening its sphere of influence.
Shah Rukh Khan brings back masala genre to Bollywood
Jawan is likely to reintroduce Bollywood to such a style of filmmaking, which was earlier championed by Amair Khan (Ghajini) and Salman Khan (Wanted).
Judging from the trailer, it's clear that Atlee has conceived a complex narrative of many twists and turns, covering a wide emotional spectrum. In Jawan, there seems to be a lot of romance, mother-son bonds, father-son dynamics and a liberal dose of patriotism, promoting its patrons a full bang for the buck.
Jawan also stars Nayanthara, Vijay Sethupathi and Deepika Padukone in key roles. And it will hit the big screens on September 7.