Every star, after having delivered a row of hits, reaches a point of stagnation. Shahrukh seems to be going through this phase now. After Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge, Dil To Pagal Hai, and Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, the expectations were running high. But the big Khan fails to deliver in the movie Baadshah. But the blame does not lie entirely with him. No one could have rescued this movie, with its hackneyed story line, hopeless situations, and an overdose of hamming.
Shahrukh plays Baadshah, an aspiring small time detective, who is supposedly running through a lean phase, but yet has an amazing, state-of-the-art office, with a bungling assistant, played by the tiresomely funny, Johnny Lever. Shahrukh may be good at comedy, but he definitely needs a good director to set the parameters. Here he runs amuck and consequently he is more irritating than funny.
Baadshah is hired to convince a bade-baap-ki-bigdi-beti Seema (Twinkle Khanna), whose father, played by Avtar Gill, wants to get her married to a groom of his choice (since when did detectives take up matchmaking responsibilities). Shahrukh takes up the task, but ends up falling in love with the girl.
There are numerous twists and turns, where the lead pair goes through the whole gamut of filmi emotions. Finally the father is exposed to be a fraud and everything is peachy pie. But the director realises that this much of story couldn't last for the required 3 hours, and so he puts in a Chief Minister under the threat of assassination who doesn't have anyone to save her except Baadshah (imagine that!). After many more twists and turns, with Shahrukh and Johnny Lever competing to act crazier, the director mercifully ends the movie.
The movie aims at entertaining the audience. Wonder if there is an audience available that enjoys such low-grade entertainment. There is a whole lot of confusion with Twinkle Khanna trying to do an 'Urmila', and Shahrukh looking like he is on the run from a lunatic asylum. No wonder he's singing 'Main To Hoon Pagal'. If you are looking for some mindless fun, this movie is for you. Problem being its mindless all right, but there is no fun to be seen anywhere.