Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Heroes On The Highway

The laws of attraction get blurred when it comes to 70 mm. Some actors occupy our undivided attention. For close to three hours, we stay glued to the screen lost in a world of fantasy, rooting for a person who isn't immediate family or friend but nevertheless becomes the prime focus of our lives. We step out of the darkened theatre but his presence continues to haunt us. The fact remains that we need heroes...and in a world bereft of real heroes, we turn to reel ones. And for the last 50 years or so, these stalwarts have endeavored to make our lives a little less ordinary.

Aamir Khan
He isn't just a superstar. He is a super actor. Or, to be more precise, he's a combination of both. He can change from being a militant to a college student to a student counselor and yet make each role his own. You zoom out Aamir the star and zoom in on the character he portrays. Aamir is perhaps the only actor from the film industry who has a 100 per cent track record at the box office this last decade or so. You may call him a maverick; you may call him a marketing genius, the fact remains that brand Aamir Khan spells success.
Ranbir Kapoor
He is currently the superstar-next-door. He has got world class confidence and his carefree acting takes your breath away. As in the case of any other superstar, we love reading about his off-screen exploits too and he hasn't disappointed us. Despite belonging to the current generation, Ranbir exudes an old world charm. Maybe its part of belonging to the Kapoor clan but he does have an instant connection with the audience.
Amitabh Bachchan
Despite not having conventional good looks, his smoldering intensity made women drool over him like crazy. His emotive eyes and baritone voice made him unique. There wasn't a lover like him on screen. Caring, sensitive to the hilt, with an assured air about him which has never been captured since. Listen to him recite poetry in Kabhi Kabhie and you can understand why women went mad over him and why men memorised poetry and took diction lessons.

Sanjay Dutt

We love Sanjay Dutt for his resilience. Despite facing numerous ups and downs in life, he still came up trumps. He could have sleepwalked through any film on the strength of his sheer good looks but he is one actor who tried to be true to his craft as well. We admire the way he has resurrected his career time and again. A chocolate hero at the start of his career, Sanjay built a good body during the '90s when being muscular was the norm. Post 2000, he has perfected his comic timing and has come across as a reliable box office draw.
Shah Rukh Khan
Like Julius Caesar, he came, he saw, he conquered. SRK is a combination of passion, guts, charisma and talent. We love the fact that he douses you with goodwill every time you see him on screen. It's this quality that has made him the king of all he surveys. We also love the fact that King Khan hasn't been shy of trying out different roles. He made the anti-hero genre come alive with back to back hits like Darr and Baazigar. He looked the part of a disgraced hockey player turned coach in Chak De! India and then tried his hand at playing a man suffering fromAsperger's Syndrome in My Name Is Khan.
Ajay Devgan
Who says you need to look like a hero to make it big in the industry? All you need is luck and oodles of conviction in your own self, in your own destiny. Ajay had all that and much more. He also has a knack for reading the wind and changing course without losing any steam. The masses look at him and upscale their aspirations. He remains the face of hope for millions of wannashines today. Want proof -– check his latest block buster Singham.
Abhishek Bachchan
If someone was born with the proverbial golden spoon in the mouth its Abhishek. For one born to such illustrious parents as Amitabh and Jaya Bachchan, life can be a bed of roses in some ways; it can be quite a bumpy ride in others. We love Abhishek for the fact that he hasn't let the burden of being the son of India's biggest film star get to him. In his own quiet way, he's overcome the hardships and made a niche for himself. His gentlemanly ways and polished charm has gotten him quite a fan following as well.
Akshay Kumar
A former cook and martial arts expert lands in Mumbai and makes it big as a movie actor. No producer will ever buy such an outrageous story but the fact remains that it happens to be true. Like a bolt of lightening, Akshay came out of nowhere and made his presence felt. We love him because he's a bundle of contradictions; for someone once described as deadwood he's become a seasoned comic actor and from being a man with no connections he has become a power broker who hosts lunches with heads of states. If that isn't the stuff of dreams, what is?
Saif Ali Khan
For someone born with a silver spoon, Saif's very self-aware. He didn't have any qualms about plying second fiddle to Akshay Kumar in the initial stages of his career. After making his mark in ensemble casts, he's carved a niche for himself and is able to shoulder a film on his own. He's had a long, hard struggle despite hailing from the in-crowd and we love the fact that he didn't let the setbacks bog him down.

Hrithik Roshan
World class abs, Stallone-like biceps, brooding persona, a remarkable talent for dance and uber cool acting skills; Hrithik is a combination of all this and so much more. He is a complete package, a complete entertainer. He is a perfectionist who doesn't leave anything to chance. We love him for the fact that despite having it all, success hasn't gone to his head. He still yearns for perfection and is forever on an internal quest.

Salman Khan
Salman is charisma personality, he elevates any film just by being in the frame. We love him because he hasn't changed over the years. Like sunshine, like rain, there's this air of permanency about him. Others have to act for their Swiss holidays. Not him. He is Salman Khan in every frame. He remains the industry's most eligible bachelor despite his bad boy image. He has led a chequered life but such is his magnetism that you tend to forget his faults. You just shrug and say, he was just being human.

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