There is much anticipation for the upcoming Sajid Nadiadwala film Kick, set to release on 25 Jun 2014. One the reasons for the excitement is the stars involved: Jacqueline Fernandez, Randeep Hooda, Nawazuddin Siddiqui, and Salman Khan. Salman Khan fans are particularly enthusiastic that he himself sings several of the songs on the soundtrack, including the romantic song "Hangover."
The eldest son of the eldest son of screenwriter Salim Khan, Salman Khan was born on 27 December 1965. His first role was Vicky in the 1988 film Biwi Ho To Aisi (though his voice was dubbed) and he soon rose to become one of Bollywood's most popular and successful stars. His performances appeal to all age groups - he is a hero an inspiration to the masses. He also values physical fitness and nearly all his films feature at least one opportunity for him to display his toned body.
With nearly 75 films to his name, he has performed in a variety of film styles from comedy to tragedy to action to romance. In the latter category, the following films stand out because the feature stories and performances that stay with you long after the film is over.
If you are new to Bollywood, here are five romantic films to watch starring Salman Khan.
Description: Free-spirited Sameer (Salman Khan), a boy of Indo-Italian parentage, travels to Gujarat, India to learn Indian Classical Music under the guidance of Pandit Darbar (Vikram Gokhale). Here Sameer meets Nandini (Aishwarya Rai), Darber's daughter, assistant and classical dancer. Nandini at first dislikes Sameer but grows fond of him as they spend time together at work and play. Soon they fall in love and when Sameer asks for Nandini's hand in marriage, her family refuses because they have already chosen a husband for their daughter. Sameer returns to Italy. Nandini marries Vanraj (Ajay Devgan) who discovers the love story of Nandini and Sameer. He decides to take her to Italy to be reunited with her true love.
Why I Love This Film: This is both an engaging story and beautifully shot film. The portrayal of this innocent, happy-go-lucky lover suddenly faced with obstacles he cannot overcome is heartbreaking. It is the enduring hope of all three characters that keeps the momentum of this film going. And Sameer's upbeat nature makes him even more endearing each time you meet him. As in most Bollywood films, ultimately love wins. But here, the resolution may not be what you expect.
Description: Raj Malhotra (Salman Khan) meets Priya (Rani Mukherjee) at a friend's wedding and is attracted to her. When their families set them up to meet as prospective spouses, they are delighted and they marry. Priya settles in with Raj and his family and soon they are expecting their first child. An accident causes her to lose the child and she is unable to conceive again. Enter Madhoo (Preity Zinta), a street-wise prostitute who is willing to become surrogate mother for the couple. Their relationship becomes entangled in a love triangle when Madhoo falls in love with Raj.
Why I Love This Film: While some plot points of the film borrow liberally from the Hollywood film Pretty Woman, this film is not the same story. There is no question that Raj and Priya are in love which is felt by everyone who wanders into their world. Raj's understands Priya's pain, who is devastated that she can no longer bear children. You feel Raj's pain when he is faced with fathering a child outside of their relationship. It is the love between Raj and Priya that rubs off on Madhoo.
3. Tere Naam
English Translation: "In Your Name"
Release Date: 15 August 2003
Director: Satish Kaushik; Written by: Jainendra Jain, Bala
Music by: Himesh Reshammiya, Sajid-Wajid
Producers: Sunil Manchanda, Mukesh Talreja
Description: Radhe Mohan (Salman Khan) is a hoodlum slacker who lives with his brother's family and hangs out at the local college - long after his graduation. He has earned a reputation as tough guy and bully and often gets into brawls. When he falls for new student Nirjara (Bhumika Chawla), the daughter of a priest, he discovers - for the first time - the emotional toll of love in all its forms.
Why I Love This Film: This is one of Salman Khan's most powerful performances. The story takes you through the 7 shades of love: attraction, infatuation, love, reverence, worship, obsession, and death. Radhe always remains rough around the edges. You sense that true love is something that is unnatural to him. When fate separates Radhe and Nirjara, you sense the devastating toll of the loss of true love. While this isn't one of your standard happy ending Bollywood films, this extraordinary story is unforgettable through to the last frame.
Description: Hollywood B-list actress and diva Marigold Lexton (Ali Larter) finds herself stranded in India after a film role falls through. She is befriended by Rani (Suchitra Pillai-Malik) and other members of a crew working on another film and is handed a role that requires her to dance. Unfortunately, she lacks dancing skills. Prem (Salman Khan), the choreographer, helps her learn the steps and along the way she learns more about herself, her life, and her heart.
Why I Love This Film: This English-language film offers delightful fictionalized account of what might go on behind-the-scenes in a Bollywood film production. Director Willard Carroll intended Marigold to bridge the gap between Indian and American cinema and he accomplishes this goal with all the enthusiasm of someone who has fallen in love with Bollywood. Marigold is brusque and brash and quite a problem-maker. Getting stranded in India is probably the best thing that could have happened to her. Prem is delightfully honest and authentic and you feel that he is someone with whom you'd like to sit down and have a meaningful conversation.
Warning: Make sure to get the original version with Ali Larter speaking her own lines. The iTunes version I downloaded has Ali Larter's voice dubbed in Hindi which totally destroys the storyline of east meets west.
Description: A marriage is arranged between Rajesh (Mohnish Bahl) and Pooja Choudhury (Renuka Shahane). With great gusto the families get together to plan the engagement and marriage ceremonies. At these ceremonies, Rajesh's younger brother, Prem (Salman Khan) meets Pooja's younger sister, Nisha (Madhuri Dixit), and after a few meetings they fall in love. Within the year, Pooja gives birth to a baby but a few months later an accident claims her life. Rajesh is devastated, and the families decide that it will be in the best interests of both the child and Rajesh if Nisha were to take Pooja's place and marry Rajesh.
Why I Love This Film: This a wholesome entertainer. These characters work, play and live life together in celebration of family. There isn't a lot of drama in this film. What entertains is the series of practical jokes, group games, and shared meals. Prem is fun-loving and Nisha offers the perfect complement to his hijinks. When tragedy does strike, the family comes together to find resolution.
Description: This sweeping, socially-conscious romantic drama from Sooraj R. Bartjatya tells the story of wealthy Prem (Salman Khan) and working-class Suman (Bhagyashree Patwardhan), who fall in love and fight to stay together, overcoming the snobbery of Prem's family and the stubborn pride of Suman's.
Why I Love This Film: This was Salman Khan's debut in a leading role and he is full of the innocence and youthful exuberance his character needs. The film has a lot of the old-school Bollywood style which western audiences may not appreciate, but these young stars make this a real entertainer. The first half tells the story of emerging love while the second half focuses on a more mature, dedicated love. There are several musical snippets which are clearly borrowed from Hollywood films, but don't let that distract you from this memorable story.
If you liked this, check out our other Friday Five posts.