Jaan-E-Mann, 2006

Directed by: Shirish Kunder

I was going to log this film under the “Seen but Unwritten” and forget about it but then I realized it was Salman Khan’s birthday, and I thought I should honor it. Somehow.

This film is brainless fluff. There are some funny parts, some sad parts, a love triangle, sequins and cool lighting effects. Otherwise, there isn’t much to recommend and it is simply a film that I watched because I was snowed in and it was almost 3 hours of time killer.

Sparkly trees? Me want.

The plot centers around Suhaan (Salman Khan) and Piya (Preity Zinta) who were high-school-college sweethearts and who eloped when their parents disapproved of their pyaar. Suhaan is a wannabe movie star who lands his first Hero role by strutting into a casting directors office and rips off his shirt*. When the director of his film learns that he is married he demands the Suhaan live apart from his wife until the film comes out so that his Hero image is not spoiled. Instead of shrinking away in to the background Piya files for divorce and moves to New York City. With his movie a flop and a demand for Rs. 50,000 in alimony Suhaan and his uncle Vakil (Anupam Kher) determine that the solution to their problems is to get Piya married again so that the demand for alimony is null and void.

Luckily Champu (Akshay Kumar) comes knocking on the door looking for Piya. Champu was a fellow classmate of Suhaan and Piya and has always nursed a love for Piya. He feels that he can win her now, as a NASA astronaut, compared to the geek he was in High School/College. Suhaan and Champu fly off to NYC and start wooing Piya.

In true love triangle ishtyle Piya must make a decision between Suhaas and Champu…

This movie was so painfully long.

I just have to get that complaint out in the open. Thankfully it was not drawn-out because it deviated from the plot at all, there was just so much jammed into the 2 hours and 80 minutes that it dragged. And dragged. And dragged.

Pacing was not helped by the songs which were awkward, ill placed and so non-lyrical that it often felt that the singers were singing phrases to songs that were completely different from what the accompaniment was playing. It literally made my brain hurt. It was like rapping on top of songs that sounded akin to the ones that would play as Shashi and Mumtaz ran around a forrest. It just made no sense.

Given the rather shallow nature of the subject matter I applaud the trio of main actors in their effort and devotion to their roles. Akshay Kumar was as close to normal as I’ve ever seen him and so spruced up in a suit and slicked back hair that I was having many “fan myself” moments. Salman Khan was my first filmi crush so there is not much I will say against him. He was very funny in this role, light hearted and heartbroken at turns with great effectiveness. Preity was given a great role and did well in it as the independent woman.

There is not much I can find to nitpick about this film. It’s seamless in its charm and besides an oddly paced section is fun enough to bring some cheer on a cold, snowy day.

Also: Shashi!

*Oh, the casting couch stories that are in my head!

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3 thoughts on “Jaan-E-Mann, 2006

  1. Oh. This is one of my ALL TIME FAVOURITE FILMS and it pains me that you dismiss it as "brainless fluff". No! NOOOOOOOO! Yeah, it is long. I'll give you that. But OMG for film geeks like me, it is PURE HEAVEN. Intertextual references abound! It's like…a proto-OSO with all the attendant glory. For me anyway. But you know. Whatevs.

  2. MMMMM maybe. but sometimes, different strokes for different folks, yeah? I do not feel too pained :) after all, I am always dissing your boy Shashi (lovingly, I diss him lovingly). OHMYGOD THOUGH my FIRST KISHORE KUMAR MOVIE ARRIVED TODAY THOUGH and I AM SO EXCITED TO WATCH IT it looks sooooooo awesome!

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