PK has been in the news for over a year now with leaked pictures of Amir Khan in strange get ups doing the round and all sorts of speculations being made about its script. But interestingly enough the makers have been able to keep the story under tight wraps thereby generating some serious curiosity for the film which by the way coupled with Amir Khan’s presence and Hirani’s direction is the biggest USP of this project. After the super success of the Munna Bhai series and the record breaking 3 Idiots, Hirani returns to helm another project which Bollywood has tagged its hope with to raise them up from the mediocrity of the trash that they have churned out this year.
The film begins with a voice-over narration explaining us about the existence of millions of galaxies that exist in the universe and how probable it was for another galaxy to have life forms similar to ours. As if the skies had heard the narration, a spaceship hovers over the unforgiving terrains of Rajasthan and drops off a nude life form that looks exactly like one of us. We know that he is PK. Within moments of his arrival on earth PK is robbed of the lone remote control that he has to summon back the ship that dropped him. Stranded here on earth PK must now find himself the remote which was taken from him in a country of 1 billion souls.
Many thousand miles from Rajasthan, Jaggu (Anushka Sharma), an Indian girl falls in love with Sarfaraz (Sushant Singh Rajput), a Pakistani dude. Her parents don’t approve of the union and sort counsel of a holy man, Tapasvi Maharaj (Saurabh Shukla). Tapasvi Maharaj warns Jaggu of her love and that he would betray her and within days of the prediction, that’s exactly what happens. Distraught, Jaggu returns to India only to find her parents shun the door on her. She takes up a job at a Delhi based News Channel and starts passing her days. Looking for news, Jaggu runs into PK who is now in Delhi and is handing out pamphlets asking people to help him find the missing gods. They keep bouncing into each other until Jaggu realizes that he could be news. She tries to unravel the Puzzle that PK is and for the first time PK lets in someone to his secrets. To find out what happens next, you will have to watch this amusing affair which is much in the same line as Hirani’s previous efforts.
PK asks questions and he asks questions ranging between religious differences, gender biases and above all questions pertaining to the existence and oneness of God. PK is social commentary and it does try to shove in a social message of equality and oneness and to shy away from blind faith but it does so in such a sweet way that you cannot help but fall in love with it. There is a certain degree of innocence about the film which will make you forget and forgive all the shortfalls that it has. The humor is quirky and amusing. None of it feels repetitive or too much on your face.
Be it the famous “fat barber” sequence, the scene where he enters a church with a coconut and incense sticks to be thrown out and then subsequently tries to enter a mosque with two bottles of wine thinking that God changed his taste from coconut water to wine, the scene where he tries to empathize with a widow wearing whites and is taught that any lady wearing complete whites is a widow and then goes on to empathize with an apparently Christian girl to be married in spotless white clothes are hilarious beyond control. Jaggu uses his outlook and a different take on reality and religion to sparks off a campaign against blind faith. This part will bring back memories of Lage Raho Munna Bhai and of more recently Oh My God!
This is where the film starts going downhill. Some of the sequences and treatments for the first time seem straight out of other Hirani movies and even characters like Parikshat Sahni playing Jaggu’s father seem essaying the roles that they had done before in another Hirani film(Remember him playing the father to Jimmy Shergill in Lage Raho Munna Bhai). The climax is set up for one huge duel between the Godman Tapasvi Maharaj and PK but fizzles into one of the lamest and weakest climax that we have seen in a Hirani movie for a long time. The pieces conveniently fall into places raising eyebrows at not only the believability of the film but also the hurried manner in which it was written without giving any thought to writing a powerful climax which would harp at our hearts like Lage Raho Munna Bhai or Munna Bhai MBBS or 3 Idiots for that matter. The duel is reduced to a simple phone call which is made as melodramatic as possible but the desired effects are not achieved.
Irrespective of all major and minor hiccups, what makes PK tick apart from the humor is Aamir Khan’s endearing performances. He is so sweet and innocent in his essay that the audience is bound to be hooked by his histrionics. He peppers his performance with just the right amount of sentimentality and emotions to make you almost teary eyed. However the lackluster writing towards the end seriously clips his wings. Anushka does well in a role which clearly demanded little of her. Sanjay Dutt is noticeable in a cameo. Saurabh Shukla is like potatoes. He is a necessary ingredient in any recipe and he tastes well almost everytime. That’s exactly the case here. PK’s music is a big letdown. None of the songs stick and they only make the film longer by a torturing 15-20 minutes. The film would have done well without the songs.
Overall, the most eagerly awaited film of the year falls a tad bit short of its mark in terms of material and sheer magnitude that has been set about by its predecessors. Hirani falls prey to his own greatness and that’s not saying that he was not lazy with writing the second half of the film. Having said that, PK is still a good watch because of the superb comedy and Aamir Khan’s sterling performance. The social message that it banks on is also an important one and even though we have heard it and seen it all before, it doesn’t harm to hear and see good things a few times over. Watch PK and get entertained.