Yesterday Kanti and I went to watch Salman Khan’s much anticipated film “Bajarangi Bhaijaan.”  The film was deliberately timed to release on the day of Eid.  July 17th was that special day for Muslims globally.  Eid Mubarak to our Muslim sisters and brothers.

The story Bajarangi Bhaijaan revolves around a 6-year old Pakistani girl who gets lost on the way to Delhi.  Wishing to find a cure for speech impediment the mother sets out to take her daughter to a Dargah in Delhi, which is believed to grant the power of speech to a mute child.  After getting separated from her mother while on the train, the girl lands in Delhi and encounters Salman Kahn serendipitously.  He makes a promise to the girl to unite her with her parents in Pakistan.  Their journey to Pakistan is fraught by many mishaps.

The movie will touch the hearts of all parents.  We saw the face of our 6-year old granddaughter, Jaya, in the little girl and so my review of the film may be somewhat biased.

Bajarangi Bhaijaan is a nicely packaged film that conflates story, action, songs and dances.  Most of all, it evokes sympathy for the innocent, helpless and absolutely adorable girl who is mute.  The underlying theme of the story is selfless love to another human being.  While love unites, hatred separates.  The movie aims at bridging the gulf of hatred and a false sense of patriotism between the two nations.  Jingoism is dangerous.  According to the film, India and Pakistan are plagued by the ideologies of Islam on the one hand and Hinduism on the other hand.

The film makes an effort to bringing the two arch enemies (i.e. India and Pakistan) closer together through the medium of an innocent girl who is mute.  I find her muteness quite symbolic because she can see hypocrisies in both religions, but she can’t speak.  So she remains opinion less and voiceless.  If the governments are adamant to change, people have hearts and power to change.  When everything else failed, the reporter brought out the plight of the little girl to the public through social media. Social media in today’s society is powerful.  It can overpower even the government, as it did in the film.

This film is a distinct departure from the Bollywood Masala type where there are at least a dozen gratuitous sleazy dances.  Bajarangi Bhaijaan has only two dances and just a few songs.  This is a breath of fresh air.  It’s definitely a feel good movie that I recommend to my Facebook friends.   We hope you will enjoy the movie as much as we did.—Deepak Shimkhada