Fanney Khan

Anil Kapoor, Rajkummar Rao, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan
Atul Manjrekar

Fanney Khan represents the life of Mumbai in all its entirety. It is about people who live in chawls and have big dreams, who look at those tall skyscrapers and think that heaven is perhaps on the 128th floor. While their lives are a constant struggle, they cope with their dreams firmly keeping them away from any despair. Living such a life is Prashant Sharma aka Fanney Khan (played by Anil Kapoor), he is nearing 50 and music is his life. He believes in his talent and is full of hope. Every time he dons his shimmering golden jacket, the world seems like a better place. He starts once again living in his dream. Obviously, one cannot live on dreams alone, so he also has a job. It is not much but it sure fills his family’s stomach. Soon Fanney Khan realises his dreams might not really work, so he starts living his dreams through his daughter, Lata who he has named after the famed singer. Lata (Pihu Sand) knows her limitations, she loves her music but knows she doesn’t look the part. She has tried but her extra kilos keep hampering her popstar image, try and she may she cannot be a Baby Singh (Aishwarya Rai Bachchan)

Baby Singh, is omnipresent in Lata’s house, while she dreams to be like her, her father believes Lata is just as good if not better. There are many times we hear of Baby Singh and her grand stardom, and one fine day, Baby walks in straight into Fanney Khan’s taxi. In despair with the way his daughter’s career is going, not knowing what more he can do, Khan does the first thing that comes to his mind. He kidnaps Baby Singh with the help of his friend and ex-colleague, Adhir (Rajkummar Rao)

While the kidnapping and the subsequent sequences are the high point of the film, it starts a whole whirlwind of events but also marks the point where the script starts plummeting on the downward spiral.

Anil Kapoor, Pihu Sand and Divya Dutta are fantastic in the film. Each have selfishly brought out the best in their part. Yet, none have been able to uplift the film beyond a certain point. Almost Famous – the film that Fanney Khan is inspired by, comes under everyone’s must see list. However, Fanney Khan doesn’t impress as much. Aishwarya Rai for instance, gets kidnapped, but she is completely cool with her kidnappers, she acts like a diva all through causing a fair amount of disappointment. There is much that the film wants to say, but it doesn’t. almost always, you find Fanney Khan falling short. With such a fabulous cast, with such a grand cast, there is nothing in the film that stays with you. Not even the songs of the film are impressive. For a film that revolves around music, that screams and demands a chance for everyone to be able to live the music of their lives, the mediocre soundtrack is a let-down. The director tries to infuse a lot of humour in the film, but he gives logic a wide berth. There are so many moments in the film that makes no sense at all and unfortunately, many of those revolve around Rajkummar Rao’s character, an actor who has been associated with only excellent films, which makes the faux pas most jarring.

The film came with great expectations, perhaps that’s why the disappointment is so steep.

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