Ghajini Review – Aamir and Asin excel

So I finally caught this movie that’s been bombarded on us with hajaar marketing messages. From ushers getting the ‘Ghajini’ haircut to Aamir himself becoming a barber and giving his fans in Delhi the buzz cut.

I finally gave into the persuasion and caught the movie.

First things first, Aamir as the wounded, angry and forgetful beast of a man is terrific. His portrayal of pain and rage – a potent combination- makes you flinch. The performance is unlike any he has done in the past. Even his earlier action turns [in Sarfarosh] pale in comparison. Either the guy has gone on honing and developing his craft, which is stupendous – or he’s always had the talent and we’ve just never got to see it so far.

Asin is a breath of fresh air – in an industry reeling under the collective size zero weights of dignified haughty unreachable beauty [think Aishwarya, Katrina, Deepika, Kareena] she’s ebullient, beautiful but yet down to earth. Of course, the script demands her to be so, but except for Kareena’s role as Geet in “Jab We Met” I don’t remember a similar performance.

Where I thought the film was weak was at its emotional core, the love story between Aamir’s character Sanjay and Asin’s character Kalpana. Somewhere in comparison to the rage filled revenge theme it seems too humdrum and bland by comparison. That’s funny. Remember that Aamir was introduced to us 20 years ago as the next door loverboy. He has strived to lose that image, and how successfully!

Maybe that’s what the film’s message is.

That even an ordinary love story can drive people to extraordinary lengths. And if that sounds similar to another recent film, I am knowingly doing it 😉

p.s. Oh, and when was the last time a Hindi movie was named after the negative lead? Even Sholay wasn’t called Gabbar Singh or Mr. India wasn’t called Mogambo!

p.p.s. Oh did I tell you how awesome the action sequences were? After a long time some hard core hand to hand fights. Though it did seem to make Aamir look like a cross between Mike Tyson and Superman!

p.p.s. Aamir’s looking more and more like a cross between Toby Maguire and Tom Hanks.

p.p.p.s. Aamir’s looking cross. Period 😉


About Gautam

Gautam is a HR professional interested in how emerging technologies are impacting work, careers and organizations.

Posted on December 28, 2008, in DesiPundit, movies and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 10 Comments.

  1. People seem to be too engrossed in imposing their preconceived ideas and their choice of actors. If we don’t learn to respect the dedication and discipline that an actor brings into film-making then we cannot ensure good films for our own future generation. Its not about Amir building his body, its about what it takes for an actor to go through to do a character according to the script of the movie. Amir bags five out of five for bringing in that dedication, industry and commitment in to commercial hindi movie. He deserves a ROYAL SALUTE and will make history.

  2. I just hated Asin and the music of AR rehman..i quite agree with krishna. Why does the actress have to be so very perfect..helping the poor,the orphans..the blind..and giving gifts to poor children when she herself cannot afford to pay the houserent. She’s just over-reacting and trying to look beautiful and ‘perfect’ but her acting is nil. Jia is far sensible than her.

    I think that their lovestory was totally untrue. Asin saying no to such a big company as she loves her house so much..wouldn’t she be paid for that.
    And when she’ making stories of her love with a business tycoon,media then doesnt feel the need of verifying the story from sanjay,just a few calls whereas asin’s was a complete newsstory in the magazine.
    Instead,all the retards believe her and people approach her so as to work with sanjay.Aamir doesnt even care to clarify his image.
    And why do all all the incidents have to be so big ! She could have been killed by any gang. But this ‘brave’ girl has to save the society ! Even after saving the girls,she goes to find out the 2 girls. What is the police for! then she even lectures the mob ! whoa.. Still,she moves around without security.
    When these men come to her place,then this brave girl becomes a chicken. Even aamir comes to rescue her all alone without calling police or any help..dumb he!
    Furthermore,when aamir goes to ghajini to kill him,despite the fact that ghajini knew he was coming,he and his gang did not even have a weapon at their disposal..what the f***

    Well,the movie had a good storyline and i found it touchy at times but such kind of stupidities were not expected from Aamir. i have always loved his movies as they stand-out but this movie did not. You cant just serve no-matter-what to the today’s educated society!

  3. Krishna Brahmbhatt


    1. In the beginning, the cop is waiting for Aamir who is seen sitting by the window in the moving bus. The cop runs after the bus to find there is no Aamir. Where did he go? Aamir had no idea who was chasing him down, so he wouldn’t want to run away. So where did he go?

    2. Polaroid camera. Who uses it? When ‘Memento’ came out, Polaroid cameras were the ‘in’ thing. Now, they aren’t. Why didn’t he use a digital camera or mobile with a digital stylus which allows almost everything to make record of?

    3. Aamir gets off the auto rickshaw at his address. The driver asks him “whose address is this?” Which driver has ever asked that? Who asks if you want to get down at your girl friend’s place or grandma?

    4. Aamir is talking to Jia for the first time who scribbles on the note pad what he is saying. He angrily tells her to rip the note. She anyways will remember the three things she wrote down.

    5. Why is Aamir angry all the time? He should be acting lost not angry. He has short term memory loss not psychotic tendencies. If he is shown nice and good in the end, he should be the same all the time before he stumbles upon to remember Ghajini.

    6. Aamir enters his apartment and we see “switch off the light” note on the wall. So we assume, there ought to be notes for “this is water, drink it”, “this is restroom”? etc. Memento aptly showed the hero only has a short memory loss but ‘knows’ the basic actions of life. Aamir doesn’t need notes demarcating where to put his wallet and mobile on table. If he has “switch off the light” note, then he also should have had “lock the door” note on the wall.

    7. Why is Aamir showing his biceps in business professional clothing? Who does that? It is just not Aamir.

    8. Random songs with nonsense lyrics. They look like music videos and not movie songs, not that they have to, but they don’t gel with the movie’s theme.

    9. Aamir, the industrialist, is watching Mayapuri’s ad on StarGold. Which CEO does it? And when the alleged affair with Asni becomes public, he is personally answering the phone queries from the press from this office. Which CEO does it?

    10. Asni is giving out interviews to the press, but never saw Aamir’s photograph in the press. The tabloid published the struggling model Asni’s photograph but not of the famous industrialist.

    11. Characters like the blind man are deliberately created to further Asni’s good nature persona.

    12. Aamir with all his 8 abs and biceps is knocking guys out three times his size in one shot. Aamir punches one bad guy in the end and his head flips around. He just has a good body with memory loss, he didn’t have any superhuman powers. After all, he is 5’-3” and no NSG commando, so a big guy will take it to him no matter what.

    13. Background score has nonsense rap at the wrong time in the movie.

    14. Aamir only takes one photograph of all the people he wants to remember. But he takes 2 for Jia and Ghajini. Why? Just deliberately making connections for later.

    15. Jia is already written down as a friend on Aamir’s photograph. So why is she afraid of him when he comes to the hostel? When Aamir attacks her, she doesn’t call the cops, doesn’t yell until she traps him in the elevator. Then we see 50 people gather in no time. Stupid.

    16. Ghajini has a transient Haryanvi accent. Sometimes he has it, sometimes he doesn’t.

    17. Aamir is looking gay. He is sporting yellow neck ties, orange, purple shirts. Why? He is shown a cold and focused industrialist not a flamboyant artistic entrepreneur.

    18. Everything about Asni is deliberate. All her dialogues, all the poor stricken people she helps, everything seems rushed and fake. Eastern values are deliberately sucked up to us. Now why Aamir was watching and waiting outside the gate where disabled children were stuck? He is giving out interviews and making new deals, yet has time to witness deliberate junk.

    19. There is no single visually arresting still in the movie.

    20. There is no chemistry between Aamir and Asni. They cannot be a couple. The buoyant industrialist who is such confidently giving interviews to white babe news reporter, is stuck for words when he talks with Asni. It may be possible but it seems nonsense in the movie.

    21. Aamir keeps lying with Asni to hide his true identity well beyond until you start wondering why. He invents a new story that he is going to see his parents in his village. It was too much deliberate to stay float the story.

    22. Asni is traveling by train whose one compartment is completely empty and the other completely full of army people. It never happens. Then she hides with the little girl in the restroom when the bad guys are the in train. She takes her jewelry out, wraps in cloth and throws it out from a hole in the restroom door. Restroom doors don’t have holes. It didn’t have any hole in the next scene.

    23. Why are Jia and her friends so intent on solving the story when they are not gaining any project grades out of it?

    24. Asni’s phone is always on the ringer. It beeps with the same intensity whether it is inside the purse or not. There is no sound insulation. When the bad guys are chasing her in her apartment, her phone beeps and they can hear it from the stairs in the lower floor. Then they should also be able to hear everyone else’s phone ring in the apartment. But they don’t.

    25. Lights go out in Asni’s apartment when the bad guys are chasing down to kill her. One baddie asks the other “what happened?” who replies “the lights went out”. He replies back “oh, okay”.

    26. He only remembers things in the last 15 minutes. In the climax, the actual movie length runs for more than 15 minutes and Aamir still remember he has to kill Ghajini.

    27. Aamir has iron rod stuck in his stomach, yet shows no signs of it and kills off Ghajini with no visible signs of pain on his face.

    28. Is this A.R. Rehman’s music? Are these really Prasoon Joshi’s lyrics? It looks a Tamil movie not a Bollywood one.

    29. Why is the name of the movie Ghajini? The villain has no intimidating aura about him, neither his character is developed enough to deserve the movie title after him.

    30. Why is the movie 3 hours long?

  4. Hi!

    Liked your review……

    So much so that i’ve plagiarised your content and used it in my [can’t really call it that now can I….. 😉 ] post…..

    If you don’t approve of it… let me know, will remove it…

    Have a great year ahead….

  5. in other words, total paisa vasool 🙂

  6. Thanks Gautam, terrific review! My sister while coming back from her hospital, went to buy the first available ticket and we were surprised to learn that there was a -pre-view- on 24 December (paid preview) and we went for it!

    I completely agree with you on most counts – particularly how Aamir has ably personified the rage and anger he has contained and brewed since that fateful incident when he lost his lady love.

    The anger was so palpable and audience in the hall could connect with it in amazing ways – so much so that people in the hall were responding by an applaud whenever Aamir had hit the bad guys…

    Although the superman antics of bashing up 100 guys is a little filmy (rather lot filmy) still the muscular Aamir could carry it on quite well.

    The romance is underplayed and the relation between the two could have been more intensely portrayed, particularly when this is one area where bollywood has churned out quite powerful productions.

    Thanks for the review Gautam, warm wishes and happy new year in advance, bobby

  7. Hmm… I tend to agree more with Khalid Mohamed actually. I’ll invite you to have a look at Ghajini from my point of view:

  8. Ghajini, Not the name of the hero or the heroine but the villain ? The names says everything. I knew the storyline right before the movie was released since I’ve watched the tamil version. So to me, Ghajini isn’t about how the story goes but more of how Aamir/Asin performs. Is it better than the Tamil version ?

    And yes, I have to say, Aamir Khan’s potrayal of a short term memory loss patient is far more impressive and Asin has grown even more gorgeous than before.

    Overrall, it’s a definate unforgettable film and of course, 4.5 out of 5 rating from me. what happen to the balance rating of 0.5 ? ‘The ticket was expensive man !’
    Enjoy the movie…..

  9. Very good movie……comdedy, tragedy, action….what more??? all is there…..Great acting by Aamir Khan & new face Asin…the scenes are so directed that one can’t forget easily….I have watched movie 5 times…..& still hoping to watch again & again & again……after 26/11 in Mumbai, we can see some smile & relief on our face….it’s great movie……

  10. Lakshmikanth Raja

    Ghajini – though Aamir’s performance was too good as usual – was really disappointing as a whole. The story was so very unconvincing that I lost my patience half way through. This is the first time ever I’ve walked out of an Aamir Khan movie.

    There was no chemistry between Aamir and Asin – except for the songs. For the second time (first was with fanaa), screenplay looked so very weak and out-of-balance in Aamir’s flick.

    All the more, since I am from Andhra Pradesh and have grown up hating Telugu movies (most of them ofcourse), Ghajni looked like a silly telugu movie with too much of over done emotions and connectionless plot. Lets wait and see how people across the globe respond to Ghajni.

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