January 27, 2012 06:30:31 PM IST Enkayaar, Glamsham Editorial
Comparisons with an earlier brand by the same name which attained cult status more than 20 years ago indeed would be the way to approach the AGNEEPATH of the modern times which has Hrithik Roshan enacting the role that fetched Big B the award in the original film. Indeed, one of the characteristics which is similar in both the versions is the brood in the character that had been etched by Big B and which has been done by Hrithik Roshan as well.
For Hrithik Roshan returning to enactment of a role of a laity is a high in the modern version of AGNEEPATH as for quite a long time he had been playing the role of characters who were suave, modern and slick. The urban crowd may identify with this portrayal but acceptability on a larger canvas across the country only comes with enacting roles of common man. Hrithik Roshan has done it with aplomb and he had a veritable reference point in Big B's enactment of the role.
For AGNEEPATH pack of surprise has been in the form of exquisite performances from two iconic actors of Hindi cinema Rishi Kapoor and Sanjay Dutt. While Sanjay Dutt has played the role of a baddy in the past, Rishi Kapoor indeed is a revelation and has underlined the fact that he ought to have experimented outside the genre of romantic films in which he acted in his heydays. Rishi Kapoor's performance could be in line for awards in 2012. For Sanjay Dutt to appear menacing with a tinge of laughter, deriving his inspiration from the character of Joker in BATMAN that had been made legendary by Jack Nicholson indeed is a high point in his career. Besides, Sanjay Dutt though has enacted the role of a villain in the new version, he oozes off more power on the screen as compared with Hrithik Roshan but it gets balanced out to an extent with the vulnerability of Hrithik Roshan.
The key difference between AGNEEPATH the original and AGNEEPATH the remake lies in the fact that the remake has been shot extensively in Mandwa, while the original was shot largely in Mumbai. Frames of Mandwa have captured beautifully and it should help Mandwa in emerging as a major hangout outside Mumbai for the tourists, but for that it needs to be marketed as a destination to relive the moments of AGNEEPATH.
One key differentiation that has emerged as the stark motif is the way in which the action scenes have been enacted in the remake of AGNEEPATH as compared to the original one. Hrithik Roshan looks more convincing enacting the action sequences and may be as he has played the role of Vijay Dinanath Chauhan at a much younger age as compared to Big B, Hrithik has been given more action sequences. The action sequences are paisa vasool moments in the film. The moments of vulnerability in the modern version, especially the scene where Hrithik Roshan also brings out his dabba of fund that he has been accumulating for his marriage establish instant empathy with the audience.
Karan Johar has been able to recreate the magic of AGNEEPATH which his father did more than 20 years ago, and the audience of the present times, which may not have savored the magic of original could bask in its glory with this new version that Karan Johar has offered to the country on the eve of Republic Day of the country.