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Salman Khan’s Sultan shows only Bhai can carry an ordinary film to extraordinary success

[Spoilers inside] No Indian has ever won an Olympic gold in wrestling and this is a hard fact. But what others can't Salman Bhai can, after all ‘Bhai to Bhai hain'.

Written by Nishant Shekhar |
Updated: July 12, 2016 4:32:41 pm
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No Indian has ever won an Olympic gold in wrestling and this is a hard fact. But what others can’t Salman Bhai can, after all ‘Bhai to Bhai hain’. And this is Sultan, an ordinary film, all about one man’s extraordinary fetes.

The movie hit theatres on Eid and, as expected, it’s on its way to break all box office records. Many also see it as Salman’s best film till date. That is debatable, since it offers nothing which was not seen before.

After being rejected by his lady love Aarfa (Anushka), an Olympic gold-aspiring wrestler, Sultan (Salman) vows to become a wrestler. And after just one month of rigorous training — yes, one month — he not only wins the state wrestling championship, but also challenges a wrestler double his weight category. That’s Salman for you!

WATCH VIDEO: Salman Khan’s Sultan Gets Rave Audience Reviews

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So what happens next? Of course, Sultan beats his opponent. Don’t be foolish enough to ask how, because Bhai to Bhai hain.

So Sultan not only wins the state championship but also the heart of Aarfa and the duo together go on to write their success story in the corruption-hit 2010 Commonwealth Games. If you didn’t know, Arafa and Sultan had their names on two of the 101 medals India won at the Delhi event. But just before the 2012 Olympics in Beijing, Aarfa gets pregnant, but Sultan carries on and wins the Olympic gold.

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So, all those who saw only Sushil Kumar winning silver in the 2012 event, the footage of an Indian winning gold in wrestling is now available in the your nearest theatre.

The success in Olympics makes Sultan arrogant enough to tell the media, in a very Salman Khan style: “Sultan ko sirf ek hi aadmi hara sakta hai..khud Sultan.”

Well, that sounds like Gabbar Singh (Gabbar ke taap se tumhey ek hi aadmi bacha sakta hai… khud Gabbar). May be Papa Salim, the writer of Sholay, was asked to give this valuable input in the film.

WATCH VIDEO: 5 Reasons To See Salman Khan’s Sultan

Sultan also asserts that he will next win the World Wrestling Championship to silence all his critics.

But in a tragic twist, Sultan loses his baby boy to an over complicated medical complication. This also results in his relationship with Arafa falling apart, again too complicated to be logical. In short, she holds him responsible for the death as he was away winning the world championship when his rare blood group could have saved her newborn.

An upset Sultan quits wrestling and vows to generate funds to open an O-ve only blood bank in his village. That’s the first half of this 2 hours 48 minute film. Need we say more.

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With government not doing much for his noble cause, which however will cater only to the small number of O-ve people, Sultan agrees to participate in MMA event to generate funds. From here, the movie takes inspirations from Mithun Chakravorthy’s Boxer (1984), Dharmedra’s Apne (2007), Shah Rukh’s Chak de India (2007) and Akshay Kumar’s Brother (2015) and gets dragged to an extent that it might leave you yawning and thinking “ye scene pehle bhi kahin dekha hai”.


It is a fight of cliches at this point. The wrestling mat has everything from an underdog beating a champion to a badly thrashed hero getting up to fight on imagining his beloved’s face and millions of prayers for the hero being accepted.

When faced with a similar situation in Apne,(ribs fractured during a fight) a Bobby Deol might have quit, but not Salman. After all, “Bhai to Bhai Hain”. The terrific title track — Upar Allah niche dharti Beech mein tera junoon — inspires our desi pehelwan to get up and give dhobi pachaar to give the movie an ending which Salman Bhai’s fans were waiting for.

Despite all loopholes, the movie has some powerful performances. Salman, of course does justice to a role only he could have carried on his broad shoulders. Only he could keep the audience glued to their seats as this not so extraordinary film. But then Salman has been doing it time and time again. He is the extraordinary persona and props up his ordinary movies.

After all, Bhai to Bhai hain.

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