Courtesy of his career defining, crowd pleasing films Wanted (2011) and Dabangg (2010), Salman Khan is now a bonafide star of the masses, one who is an easily identifiable character for the public. The kind of play act that Salman had to offer through these two ventures went a long way in moulding the audiences' perception of his image, while also increasing his relatibilty with the cinema going classes.
Following the footsteps of the 'avenging male hero' in Bollywood, Salman delivered back-to-back superhits like Bodyguard (2011), Ek Tha Tiger (2012), Dabangg 2 (2012), Jai ho (2013), Kick (2014) and others that succeeded. However, Tubelight (2017) and Race 3 (2018) are two of those rare Salman Khan films in the recent times that even after earning more than 100 crore plus at the box office bear the mark of under-performing films.
Salman himself admitted in an interview that Tubelight was not a film to be released on Eid because it's a time for festivities and fun and "people went in expecting a celebration, but came out crying."
One of the reasons that Salman's Tubelight was not accepted by the audience could be because their favourite hero, who, all thanks to his macho image, could once fight scores of goons while wearing sunglasses at the back of his shirt, in a charismatic way, was now left at the mercy of bullies, only to be defended by his younger brother. All the agency and power that Salman had accumulated over the decade was taken away from him in an instant and he felt like an alien fending off for himself in his own world, where he was once the ruler or Sultan.
Basically, there was a serious dearth of commercial elements and so instead of empathising with his feelings, audiences felt more comfortable in leaving Laxman Bisht (Salman's character in Tubelight) alone.
On the other hand, even though Salman returned to action with Race 3, the story was too drab to have made a decent film. Including distasteful songs, some of which were sung by the actor himself, the film turned out to be lackluster.
Now with Bharat, Salman is back as a more relatable figure for the masses. He is fighting off musclemen on the streets as he ages impeccably. Early figures have suggested that Bharat has started on the right foot and may gain serious traction at the box office in the coming days. Turns out, a dancing, fighting Salman is better off than a grieving one.
Bharat is an official remake of the Korean film An Ode To My Father. The Bollywood film depicts the history of India through the life of an ordinary man. It also stars Katrina Kaif.
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