Shah Rukh Khan, the biggest superstar our generation has ever witnessed, the superstar who has had an impact on people across the globe celebrates his birthday today. For many overseas countries, SRK is the closest synonym to India. The only son to Mir Taj Mohammed Khan, an Indian independence activist from Peshawar, Shah Rukh in many ways has redefined the art of filmmaking and how India is represented.
Over the years, Shah Rukh has earned innumerable accolades for himself, but what catches the eye is how he speaks about his motherland on international platforms. In recent times, when Bollywood has been going through tumultuous times, producing patriotic subjects has become nothing else but money-minting machinery, but this certainly wasn't the case before 2010. Popularly known as the King of Romance, Shah Rukh's take on patriotism has been niche and it demonstrates how he feels about India.
CHAK DE INDIA: 2007 (produced by YRF, directed by Shimit Amin)
'Mujhe states ka naam na sunaayi dete hain, na dikhaayi dete hain, sirf aek naam sunaayi deta hain, INDIA', this is Shah Rukh speaking as he channelizes his inner Kabir Khan. You feel the pride as he pierces your soul and tells you that the key to becoming a prosperous nation lies in unity. The story revolves around Kabir, a hockey coach who takes on the daunting task to lead his women's team to a Hockey World Cup victory. Apart from the legendary 'Sattar Minute' sequence, an important scene needs a mention where Kabir watches the Indian flag being hoisted on the eve of the finals. The effect of this movie is such that to date whenever India wins any match, you can still hear the crowd grooving on Chak De India's title track. This movie is immortal, subtle, yet powerful to make your chest swell with pride.
SWADES: 2004 (produced & directed by Ashutosh Gowariker)
'Main yeh nahi maanta humaara desh duniya ka sabse mahaan desh hain, lekin yeh zaroor maanta hoon ki hum mein qaabiliyat hain, taaqat hain, apne desh ko mahaan banaane ki', Shah Rukh aka Mohan Bhargava doesn't sugarcoat stuff as he addresses patriarchy, dissent and hypocrisy that runs deep in our society. Swades, a movie way ahead of time addresses the issue of brain drain. Khan gets into the skin of the character and does complete justice to a niche script that keeps you hooked. There is a particular sequence in the movie where Mohan buys a glass of water from a toddler. The scene has no dialogue but it is driven by a powerful BGM (Background Music) that does enough to send a chill down your spine and remind you of your privileges.