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Why Irrfan Khan is a National Award winner!

Last updated on: March 19, 2013 16:29 IST

Image: Irrfan Khan in Saheb Biwi Aur Gangster Returns
Sukanya Verma in Mumbai

I want to do films that people can connect with and they remember my work.'

The enormously talented Irrfan Khan hasn't had much trouble achieving this target. With his pronounced eyes, warm voice and a smile, alternating between simple and sly, the actor can convey diverse moods like humour, terror and ardor with lasting conviction.

From working in mainstream Hollywood to juggling all kinds of Hindi films, Khan has created an independent slot for himself within the entertainment industry proving he's too good to be labeled or limited.

And now the man has gone ahead and won a well-deserved National Award for Best Actor (Paan Singh Tomar). Here's marveling over some of his best work.

Saheb Biwi Aur Gangster Returns

In Tigmanshu Dhulia's superior sequel, Irrfan Khan plays crafty games among the blue-blooded, harbors an undisclosed agenda and enthrals you with his ghamasan dialoguebaazi.

Read the review here


Paan Singh Tomar

Image: Irrfan Khan in Paan Singh Tomar

Our review of this film referred to Irrfan Khan as 'national treasure' and, clearly, it's no exaggeration.

In this biopic based on a real-life athlete turned outlaw of the same name, Khan immerses himself physically and mentally to deliver a performance so impeccable, it seems impolite to call it an act.

Read the review here


7 Khoon Maaf

Image: A scene from 7 Khoon Maaf

In 7 Khoon Maaf, Irrfan Khan plays the third one in the long list of loony, wrong men Priyanka Chopra exchanges marital vows with.

Unbelievably tender during the day, spewing Gulzar's exquisite poetry, he turns into an assaulting monster by night. While most would have gone the loud route, Irrfan is an astonishing blend of subtle and creepy.

Read the review here 


Yeh Saali Zindagi

Image: Irrfan Khan in Yeh Saali Zindagi

Sudhir Mishra's fast-paced action thriller packs in wit, drama and several zany twists to keep the proceedings consistently engaging.

But it's Irrfan's contribution as the both -- smitten and sly Arun that lends Yeh Saali Zindagi that edgy vibe and some extra brownie points for awesomeness.  

Read the review here 



Image: Irrfan Khan in Billu

Overshadowed by the controversies over its title and the promotions featuring producer  and guest actor Shah Rukh Khan shaking a leg with Kareena Kapoor, Deepika Padukone and Priyanka Chopra in three ditzy item numbers.

Billu's real soul and spirit, however, lies in Irrfan's dazzling turn as the sweet and simple village barber with a superstar friend.  

Read the review here


Mumbai Meri Jaan

Image: Irrfan Khan in Mumbai Meri Jaan

It's not a lengthy part but Irrfan Khan, no surprise here, makes everyone sit up and take notice in the multi-narrative of Mumbai Meri Jaan.

With his keen understanding of Thomas, a irresponsible prankster who eventually mends him ways, Khan humanises a character one wouldn't care for otherwise. 

Read the review here 


Life in a...Metro

Image: A scene from Life in a...Metro

Khan is delightful as the unlikely match for Konkona Sen Sharma in Anurag Basu's Life in a Metro starring a whole bunch of actors and their parallel plots.

It's the actors disarming appeal and remarkable spontaneity as the bungling, lovable and practical Monty that makes everyone else in the film look pale in comparison.   

Read the review here


The Namesake

Image: A scene from The Namesake

In Mira Nair's sublime adaptation of Jhumpa Lahiri's novel, he plays a mild-mannered immigrant who names his son Gogol after his favourite author, Nikolai Gogol.  

Irrfan Khan in The Namesake is just like the movies. He makes you smile. He makes you cry.

Read the review here 



Image: A scene from Maqbool

Playing the title role in Vishal Bhardwaj's adaptation of William Shakespeare's Macbeth allows Irrfan to show his true mettle.

His fall from loyal to betrayal and its impact on his guilty psyche wears such controlled starkness; it's hard to keep your eyes off the screen even for a split second.

Read the review here




Image: A scene from Haasil

The unbeatable combination of Dhulia and Irrfan Khan struck first with the shockingly underrated Haasil.

Here, Khan hits you with his knock out delivery as a persuasive gang leader in college with political aspirations, deluding the oblivious hero (Jimmy Shergill), to promote his own objectives.   

Read the review here


The Warrior

Image: Irrfan Khan in The Warrior
Irrfan Khan began to be recognised internationally after Asif Kapadia's The Warrior, where he plays a combatant who decides to give up his violent lifestyle only to be pursued by his bloodthirsty master.

The movie was UK's official entry for the Oscars in the Best Foreign Film category. But the BAFTA winning-Warrior was denied selection because it was in Hindi. 

Read the review here