Sultan (2016)
April 7, 2019 1:38 AM - Subscribe

A biographical drama based on the life of fictional Haryana based wrestler & mixed martial arts specialist Sultan Ali Khan.
posted by DirtyOldTown (5 comments total)
 
This sort of feels like a producer wanted to recapture the wrestling excitement of Dangal without all of those pesky re-evaluating gender norms themes. Instead, it's tethered to a much more traditional The Amazing Things a Man Will Do for Love storyline. That oversimplifies the result a bit unfairly but I bet you it nails the producers' intent dead to rights.

It's not all bad. Salman Khan is great at this kind of thing and Anushka Sharma is compelling, too. The songs are solid, the action sequences are exciting, etc.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 3:05 PM on April 7


I am finding that "Predictable, not particularly original, and sentimental, but heartfelt and approached with a ton of craft and conviction" is a phrase that can be applied to a fairly substantial swath of modern Bollywood.

For me personally, I am less turned off by the corniness and the well-worn themes than I am impressed by the sincerity. Hollywood truly cannot do sincerity for the most part in this era. Ostensibly progressive films seem to find it beneath them and more conservative films have gotten nakedly cynical and manipulative in a way that leaves a terrible taste in your mouth.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 3:10 PM on April 7


Hollywood truly cannot do sincerity for the most part in this era.

I think this very true. I've been to mixed audience screenings of Indian & Asian films which you aptly describe as "Predictable, not particularly original, and sentimental, but heartfelt and approached with a ton of craft and conviction" (so many contemporary popular Indian are locked in this groove). Unsurprisingly, many Western audience members would guffaw loudly at that sincerity or demonstrations of emotion (particularly of emotion on display by men). I recall a very sincere Hong Kong film where a heartfelt scene with a man who had just discovered that his child had been murdered was met with laughter with the white members of the audience. Even in my more "enlightened" circle, I stopped watching Indian films with some friends because they felt every Indian movie, regardless of the content, was an opportunity for MST3K "zingers".
posted by Ashwagandha at 4:19 PM on April 7 [1 favorite]


MST3K has ruined a lot of people for being able to appreciate movies outside their particular generational/cultural demographic. There were people guffawing at the original Suspiria when I went to see the 4k re-release, which just... ugh. Sit on a machete, you awful people.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 2:11 PM on April 8


I would say there's a fine line between having a grand ol' time riffing on dreck and taking potshots at stuff you're too cloistered and closeminded to appreciate... but honestly I don't think it's a fine line. I think it's a broad, clearly demarcated border zone and you have to be kind of an asshole to plow right through it without even slowing down
posted by DirtyOldTown at 2:14 PM on April 8


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