Salman and Shah Rukh come together for Pathaan! A ‘Double Dhamaka’ for fans

You know how there are things you love that you can never explain? And I would be ashamed to mention it to people because I can’t answer why.

One of those for me is the Salman Khan movie. Yes, I’m guilty. I watched the first show, the first day of all the Salman Khan action movies. I watched it for the longest time at an independent movie theater. What’s the fun of watching a Salman Khan movie in the hygienic atmosphere of a multiplex? It wasn’t until he went to INOX South City after failing to get Tiger Zinda Hai tickets that Salman realized that even a multiplex could be turned into a single-screen experience.

And whatever magic it has, it definitely works, whether he’s the lead in a movie or has a 10-minute cameo, as evidenced by the eardrum-splitting shouts and cheers from fans on Shah Rukh Khan’s starrer Pathaan’s 9 a.m. show.

Even King Khan himself received huge cheers whenever he appeared on screen, but the moment the black-and-white keffiyeh appeared through a hole in the train roof, the decibel level rose by leaps and bounds. Salman as Tiger gets on the train with a takeaway coffee cup and Shah Rukh’s pain reliever for Pathaan and starts beating up goons while Pathaan drinks coffee. Salman’s “bahut aaram kar liya ab thoda kaam karle?” to Shah Rukh generated audience excitement as the decibels continued to rise.

What followed was what we had been waiting to see forever. They fight alongside villains, jump over obstacles, and fly through the air in slow motion before descending on the hapless ones on top of the train. Someone in the audience exclaimed “Simple Karan Arjun aa gaye”. (Okay, it was me.) By the time you escape the plummeting train and jump into the air to catch the rails, it already feels epic. Shah Rukh and Salman’s chemistry is off the charts. If Pathaan is complete entertainment without Salman, then complete paisa vasool with him and so on.

Then there’s dialogue that Tiger is on a mission and needs Pathaan’s help and the audience can’t contain themselves. When is the next Tiger movie coming out? I’m sure that’s what everyone in the audience was wondering about. I certainly did.

The hall settled back to its usual noise level (by Pathaan standards), meaning cheers whenever Shah Rukh changed his costume for the remainder of the film. Even the post song credit scene where we go back to Karan Arjun on that railroad track. What can I do when I am ruminating that I am too old after loosening my tight muscles? We can no longer entrust the future of the country to young people, can we? The crowd breaks into deafening cheers and laughter. Khan still rules. And we want them to reign much longer.