Some star vehicles simply cannot be reviewed keeping conventional cinema aesthetics in mind. It is the star who drives the film with the help of ‘items’ highlighting his strengths for his fans to go delirious with much whistling and hooting. The films of mega stars like Rajinikanth and Salman Khan largely fall into this category. Logic, characterization and a fool-proof screenplay play secondary roles here and what has to work is the star persona and the items that the ‘plot’ allows for the star to shine. Sadly though, the masala blend required to make an enjoyable and entertaining film is conspicuously absent in Farhad Samji’s Kisi Ka Bhai Kisi Ki Jaan (KKBKKJ).
The story (if you can call it that) centers around Bhaijaan (Salman Khan), an orphan who has earned the sobriquet because he adopted three boys and took care of them as a selfless elder brother. The boys, Ishq (Raghav Juyal), Moh (Jassie Gill), and Love (Siddharth Nigam), have now grown up as adults and, stimulated by hormones, have fallen in love with three girls – Sukoon (Shehnaaz Gill), Muskaan (Palak Tiwari), and Chahat (Vinali Bhatnagar) – all from their neighborhood. They are unable to marry their sweethearts because their elder brother is a bachelor, who believes that bringing in a woman would split the bonding between the brothers. The three younger brothers decide to get their elder brother hitched with Bhagyalaxmi (Pooja Hedge). The ploy works as both of them fall in love. It is soon revealed that Bhagyalaxmi and her family in Hyderabad are being threatened by a goon named Nageshwar (Jagapathi Babu), who will leave no stone unturned to obliterate her non-violence loving family. Bhaijaan and his three brothers take on the responsibility of saving Bhagyalaxmi and her family. How Bhaijaan uses his punches to save his to-be family from the villains is what the film is all about.
KKBKKJ is a film that pays absolute obeisance to the star image of Salman Khan. There are very few scenes in the film, a loose adaptation of the Tamil film, Veeram (2014), starring Ajith Kumar, that do not centre around Khan. From his mindless entry of wearing his jacket mid-air to the final image of the film with him in a freeze frame, it is him, him and only him. Samji seems to have bet everything on his star to carry the film. As the protagonist of the film, Khan is superhumanly powerful. The task at hand never seems to present him with any any difficulties as the villains are weak. He easily dodges hundreds of punches and knives and yet emerges unharmed. Sadly, he appears to be a performer who is so mired in his own image that he turns into a caricature of himself though this may yet act as a blessing for the filmmaker to appease Khan’s enormous fan base. Samji tries to compensate with colorful costumes, a few high-octane action scenes, and multiple choreographed dance numbers but all to no avail as the narrative is made up of one trite scene after the other. Worse for Khan, it is sprinkled with one-liners that are simply not clap-worthy or whistle-inducing. And by the time the film reaches the climax and Khan thrashes one of the antagonists (Vijender Singh) into pulp, one feels as if each blow (and headbutt) is directed at oneself, making one roil with extreme pain and suffering for sitting through this 144-minute cringe fest.
Khan gives a unidimensional, uninterested performance with practically the same set of expressions throughout. The only arc provided to his character is the transition from long hair to trimmed hair post-interval and then finally to a clean shaven Bhaijaan by the climax. The characterizations of rest of the cast are so shoddy and non-existent that even a veteran Telugu star like Venkatesh struggles to do justice to his character. Except for Jagapathi Babu, the rest of the cast are sketched with a caricaturist mindset and little else. Vijender Singh is better off pulling punches off-screen rather than in front of the camera.
Technically, all the departments from V Manikandan’s camera work to Mayuresh Sawant’s editing exist for the sole purpose of glorifying Khan. The loud background score does what it can in further ensuring his larger than life status in the film.
KKBKKJ has no pretensions in that it is an unabashed vehicle to glorify Khan. While it is unratable as a film overall, it defies even the lowest rating as a showcase for its hero.
Hindi, Drama, Action, Color