Shahrukh Khan, Waluscha De Sousa
Fan as the title suggest is the story of Gaurav (Shah Rukh Khan), who proclaims to be the biggest fan of the star Aryan Khanna (Shah Rukh Khan) and happens to be his doppelganger. Gaurav is a Delhi boy, who stays with his parents, runs a cyber café, and calls himself junior Aryan Khan. He literally worships Aryan and is often imitating the superstar. His histrionics even help him win a cash prize and a trophy at a local talent show.
The speech that ‘junior Aryan’ delivers at the talent show, as if he has won a popular award, is endearing.
Thanks to the cash prize, Aryan now has enough dough to go visit his God – Aryan in Mumbai. His only agenda is to meet Aryan, and give him his priced trophy as a birthday present. A simple-hearted Gaurav believes that Aryan—one of the biggest superstars of the country would definitely acknowledge one of his biggest fans. However, with thousands of other fans crowding around the superstars house, Gaurav fails to get any audience with Aryan. The scene with Gaurav screaming at the top of his lungs about his love for Aryan, in the midst of thousands of other fans is absolutely heartwarming and gives you an insight into what really a fan feels on seeing his idol for the first time in real life.
While Gaurav is unable to give Aryan his trophy, he finds out another way to gift his superstar. Aryan beats up and threatens Aryan’s younger rival – Sid Kapoor, makes a video of it and sends it to Aryan. Not pleased by his antics, Aryan reports Gaurav to the police. The film, at this point, takes a nasty turn and the sweet, appealing love for the superstar turns into hatred as Gaurav, Aryan’s biggest fan becomes his nemesis.
The film’s plot is interesting, giving us glimpses of both sides — of that of a fan and a star, who at the end of the day, is nothing but a human being. The transition of the amicable fan, Gaurav, to an almost psychotic obsessed fan is riveting and keeps you engaged throughout the first half of the film. Maneesh Sharma’s efforts here are noteworthy.
However, the clumsy plotting of the second half makes you restless. It’s easy to digest a crazy, obsessive fan who can go to any lengths to make his idol apologize to him. But a superstar, in his 40s, chasing Gaurav on the rooftops in Dubrovnik (Why were they even there?) and dilapidated buildings of Delhi without getting noticed is too much to take. Especially if the film also wants to portray the so-called hero as just a human being, as the dialogue Aryan mouths – ‘Main bhi toh insan hoon.’ So even though these action sequences are sleek, an extremely charged Aryan chasing Gaurav, simply don’t fit well.
Maneesh Sharma succeeds in portraying the angst and glory of the fans, but fails to bring out any deeper connect with the life of a superstar barring a few scenes.
The film undoubtedly belongs to Shah Rukh Khan. The 50-year-old actor shines through all the special effects and CG, and owns the much-younger character of Gaurav completely. He aces even while playing the arrogant superstar Aryan, despite the many flaws in the character sketch. Pretty girl Waluscha de Sousa is impressive in her limited screen time and so are the other young actress of the film— Shriya Pilgaonkar and Sayani Gupta.
Fan is not your usual SRK entertainer and while it did have the potential to be a lot better, it ain’t that bad either. Khan does deliver some delightful moments, which are worth a watch.
A piece of advice to all SRK fans, do go watch the film but please don’t get inspired by it.