Slave (1998)

Aamir Khan, Rani Mukerji, Rajit Kapoor, Mita Vasisht,
Ghulam is a movie starring Aamir Khan, Rani Mukerji, and Rajit Kapoor. An amateur boxer runs errands for a local gangster but revolts against him after the gangster kills his friend and his conscience is awakened.
  • 7.2 /10.0 IMDB Rating:
  • DatePublished:
  • 2018-09-07 Added:
  • Anjum Rajabali, Writer:
  • Vikram Bhatt, Director:
  • Mukesh Bhatt, Producer:
9 / 10

shows what a great actor amir khan is!

i was not a big amir khan's fan before this movie but after watching "ghulam" it not only made me amir khan's fan but also at the same he stamped himself as the bollywood ace...

"Ghulam" shows the sudden change in the life of sidharth who first being non-serious in his life soon realise the reality of the life and when he becomes more loyal he has to pay for the changes.. emotional scenes are wonderfully executed by amir khan, the way he has tackled difficult scenes shows what a brilliant actor he's been for bollywood... whereas rani mukherjee looks gorgeous but have little to offer in a brief role.. all in all a very good movie with a good twist and a better second half... also the climax was very astonishing... the music is good to ear... highly recommended to all amir khan's fans!

10 / 10

excellent remake of On the Waterfront

When I first saw Ghulam I said finally a good original film but a couple of years I got to see Marlon Brando's "On the Waterfront" and find out a movie's rip off. Still the movie is definitely a must see for people who like realistic, hard hitting films and not the loveyduvey smoochy films. Besides that aamir khan gives a brilliant performance as the confused brother trapped in underworld's tactics. Rani mukherjee is ok. Her voice is dubbed and one can clearly make out. Aamir Khan's aati kya khandala is a great highlight of the movie. The railway track race could have taken his life but he is still alive so have fun and watch this movie. This is an awesome film. My Rating 10/10

10 / 10

Heroic

I have read the reviews given by different people and I am well versed with the version played by The Great Marlon Brando(On the Waterfront) which won him Oscar for best actor,Ella Kazan the best Director and 6 other categories. It took almost 44 years to bring out the remake using the finest actor in Indian History. The fact that remains in my mind is that I had watched the filmfare award ceremony and I was only 13 but still I remember Vikram Bhatt saying that "The Award was only possible due to Aamir Khan's effort.He had taken chance with his life by not duping the Train-race stunt.Even though the train was not running at full speed it had momentum to kill the person hitting it". The commitment from the side actors are as important as the film script.If this was shot nowadays it could have been more effective with several camera angling. Aamir knew that if he had to provide justice at least .1% to the original film he had to do this. These make it almost or equivalent to the "On The Waterfront".

7 / 10

Recipe - take `On the Waterfront' treat with Bollywood formula, take all meaning out of it, stretch it to 3 hours and stick in songs that don't fit with the film - et viola - Ghulam!

Siddhu is a small time felon in Bombay who's morals can be summarised as `every man for himself'. His lawyer has faith he can change and is trying to help him by keeping him out of jail for petty offences. Siddhu's brother works for Ronny, an ex-boxer who now runs organised crime in the area. As a result Siddhu gets some muscle work for Ronny. One day Ronny's thugs are beating up some shopkeepers for money by Siddhu's house. Afterwards Siddhu meets the eldest, Hari, and befriends him. However Hari is responsible for causing Ronny trouble and hence Siddhu unwittingly helps Ronny to kill him.

I have only seen a handful of Bollywood films of these I have loved one (Lagaan) and been indifferent to the majority. I find that they have all the flaws of Hollywood exploitation movies without many of the production values. Ghulam (The Slave) is a fine example of the standard Bollywood formula - songs, pretty girls, manly heroes, hairy villains, overacting and dramatic music and direction. As such it is OK but I'm not a fan of these standard formulae. I'd rather have them with at least a bit of a new spin. However this film doesn't want to do that and gives it to us straight. The plot is a basic `do the right thing' film that borrows heavily from `On the Waterfront' in many different ways.

The action scenes suggest a Bollywood Jackie Chan but they lack any of his flair and imagination. The love interest is dropped into the film so heavily that it hits with a heavy clang - the first hour is basically just that, it isn't integrated into the film so much as just added on. It does allow about 5 songs to occur that don't fit with the tone of the film. I'm a little biased because I always struggle to tell one from the other with these things. I know that they films are meant to be whole adventures for an audience but it just felt pretty disjointed to me.

The direction is typically hilarious - rushing cameras etc that really play to the traditional Bollywood clichés. The sound effects sound too fake and don't match the action and the different in sound quality between dialogue and singing is so noticeable that it bothered me. I know that the singing is mostly done by other people in a studio but can't they at least try and match them up in terms of quality at least.

The acting is also very clichéd. Khan was a good hero in Lagaan but he was helped by the more professional feel of that film. Here he fits with the mood of the film in that he just overacts where needed - tears, anger, frustration etc, all emotions are on his sleeve for all to see. The villains are typically bad and gruff and overact like the best of them. Meanwhile love interest Mukherjee (Alisha) is suitably air brushed, pretty and shot with a constant breeze in her hair and soft focus lens!

Considering people make a big deal of Bollywood movies being a big culture. To me this just smacked of American influence. Chicago Bulls tee-shirts, T2 posters etc all clutter the sets. Meanwhile the plot borrows from lots of American films. Like I said the plot itself is just On the Waterfront without the subtext or drama. They take it and just throw out anything of value and add songs! Even the boxing scene sees the opponent being a mickey-take of BRITISH boxer Prince Naseem Hamed. Even the climax is a mix between a wild west stand-off and a Rocky movie! Does no one else see the influence of American culture in this film? It's not a bad thing but why pretend that Bollywood films are something exciting and new?

Overall this film will please those who happily accept the Bollywood film formula with all it's weaknesses. For me I view it on the same level as any other film - it's plot is weak, a basic good versus bad story, with average acting, misplaced songs and not very much to enjoy for an even slightly demanding audience.

10 / 10

Truly a masterpiece and Aamir Khan's best performance

Ghulam is truly a masterpiece with an excellent theme by Vikram Bhatt.Definitely it is his best directorial venture.The plot of the movie taken from ON THE WATER FRONT fits very well to the culture of Subcontinent,beautifully reflects the hardships & attitude of the society in big cities and also shows the right way to fight against injustice & cruelty.The sole of the film is Aamir Khan's stunning performance.The way he has portrayed the character of Sidhu a confused,tipori is awesome.This performance has for sure declared Aamir Khan as the best actor in history of Indian cinema.Rani Mukherji looked very fresh and beautiful, the only flaw of the film is her dubbed voice which was needless.SharatSexana in the role of Ronak Singh is excellent.Music is very good.All the songs are good with "ab naam mohabbat ke ilzam " & "aati kya khandala" stand out.Overall it is an excellent film.I have seen this film 18 times till date and i recommend it to every movie lover.