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Ready Steady Po! What to expect from 'Chennai Express'

Whether it was their fun outing on Indian Idol Junior, the awkward interview on ITV’s morning show or the gazillions of fans that they met in chosen locations, Shahrukh Khan, Deepika Padukone and the Chennai Express crew have gone above and beyond to ensure word of mouth. With just a few days to go until its major Eid release, here are a few things to expect from Rohit Shetty’s latest venture:

Thumping action, slapstick comedy and colourful locations

Rohit Shetty’s movies don’t usually have engaging storylines; instead, they act as a stimulus for the inevitable blowing up of cars, the senseless moments of wit and great cinematography. Shetty’s ability to shoot an action sequence and give it light humour is one of his greatest traits as a director. However, this time he hasn’t got a naturally gifted comedian as his star character the way he did in Bol Bachchan, Golmaal and Singham. We’re going to have to wait and see whether SRK’s “common man” is going to keep tickle ribs the way Shetty’s previous movies have done. From the extravagant theatrical trailer, I can see SRK’s potential to make us laugh but not enough to make me sure. I wouldn’t be surprised if the loudest laughs performances come from the supporting cast, or Deepika’s charming southern accent. That being said, SRK looks incredible in the action scenes. His ripped shirt, bloody face and intense eyes with a backdrop of things blowing up reminded me of Koyla.

SRK-Deepika in Chennai Express

Foot-tapping music

As I wrote in my album review, the music of Chennai Express should be in reflection with the genre. With 'One Two Three Four' already being overplayed, 'Lungi Dance' constantly talked about and the positive response to 'Titli' and T'era Rasta', Vishal-Shekhar have ensured that we don’t use the music of the movie as toilet breaks. Whilst I would have loved to see a promotional video for 'Ready Steady Po', I think the music is satisfying enough and more importantly, catchy enough. To be honest, when it’s Shahrukh Khan who you’re making music for, you can rest assured that even some of the weaker songs will be well received; look at 'Kashmir Mein' as an example.

A charming jodi and some exceptionally intimidating antagonists

One thing we can always expect from an SRK movie is a high level of chemistry between him and his female co-star. Some doubted his ability to work with Katrina Kaif in Jab Tak Hai Jaan but SRK proved that he is able to adapt to any actress and portray a true love story. In Chennai Express, Rahul and Meenamma are contrasting individuals from completely different backgrounds. I’m sure we’ll see a very funny and touching example of ‘opposites attract’ in this movie. The intimidating presence of Sathyaraj and towering frame of Nikitin Dheer will guarantee some true Southern style action sequences. Dheer has been seen as a villain in the likes of Jodha Akbar and Dabangg 2 and is a proven choice for the villainous role. Just look at the character names and tell me they’re not daunting: Durgeshwara (Sathyaraj) and Tangaballi (Dheer).

The combination of SRK and Rohit Shetty is one where the outcome simply can’t be predicted. SRK isn’t at his most comfortable with this role but he does have the directorial influence of Shetty to give him boost. With its worldwide promotion, its likable music and the prestigious Eid-release spot, Chennai Express will no doubt stack crazy collections in its opening week. However, on a critical level, I think we’ll get some genuine comedy, dazzling and a justified reason to “get on the train, baby”.

Theatrical trailer: Chennai Express

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