Only Rajni can

Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jackie Chan come to mind when muscle and stunts are needed in a combat. Rajnikanth comes into action when the masses of the world’s second most populous country need to combat boredom and monotony. Though the frenzy and hype over the most talked of movie of the decade, Endiran: The Robot, is subsiding, Rajnikanth’s name and fame has hit an all-time high.

It is often said of this mega-star: ‘If Rajini-can’t, who can?’ From his punch lines to talking-styles, Rajnikanth’s inimitable ways have contributed to the making of a super star, with a fan following who will wake up in the wee hours of the morning to watch the first-day-first-show, offer special prayers, milk abhishekams and even conduct public tonsuring, all for the love of their hero.

I have found it hard to fathom the psyche of these movie buffs and fan followers. As is generally the case these days, when comprehension becomes clouded, I blamed it on the media for blowing it out of proportion. This was to be proved wrong on my visit to Chennai the week following the release of Endiran.

The drive from Chennai airport to my parents’ place is an easy hour. Invariably, the drivers initiate conversations which would range from topics such as the notorious Chennai heat to the last victory of the Chennai Super Kings!  But this time around the congenial chauffer had only one topic to discuss: Endiran.  “Did you watch the movie, amma?” he asked, out of the blue.  “Oh! No,” I replied quickly, hoping to put an end to the topic then and there.  “You should see this one. Rajnikanth Sir is super. 

See, I have even bought a DVD from Pondicherry,” he said removing the DVD from the dash board as he manoeuvered the cab through the buzzing Anna Salai.  “That’s ok.  Put it back.  Do you know you should not own pirated DVDs and if a cop catches us, both you and I will be in trouble?” I asked, perturbed.  “Don’t worry. This DVD is not an ordinary one. It is Endiran!  No police will catch us!  Do you know the story?  There is a good Rajnikanth, a bad Rajnikanth and…”

All I wanted was to get home as soon as I possibly could. I was relieved when the cab finally pulled up at my parents’ place.  I jumped out giving him a handsome tip for getting me home safely.  As I was welcomed home by my mom, I couldn’t help telling myself: “Only Rajni can!”

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