Review : Shah Rukh Khan’s Dunki – Decent but not great


Release Date : December 21, 2023

Fimlyjosh Rating : 3/5

Starring: Shah Rukh Khan, Taapsee Pannu, Vicky Kaushal, Boman Irani, Vikram Kochhar, Anil Grover, and others

Director: Rajkumar Hirani

Producers: Gauri Khan, Rajkumar Hirani

Music Director: Pritam, Aman Pant

Cinematographers: C.K. Muraleedharan, Manush Nandan, Amit Roy, Kumar Pankaj

Editor: Rajkumar Hirani

Shah Rukh Khan and Rajkumar Hirani collaborated for the social comedy-drama Dunki. The movie based on the illegal immigration concept has good buzz among the audience as two of the biggest forces of Indian cinema joined hands. The film clashing with Salaar took the excitement to the next level. Let’s see how the film is.


Manu (Taapsee), Bali (Anil Grover), Buggu Lakhanpal (Vikram Kochhar), and Sukhi (Vicky Kaushal), hailing from Laltu, Punjab, decide to go to London for various reasons. They realize that English is the need of the hour to clear IELTS and enroll in a coaching center. Hardy (Shah Rukh Khan), a soldier, helps them achieve their dream through the Dunki method (Donkey Flight method), which is an illegal way of crossing borders. Who is this Hardy? Why did he help them? Why did they choose an unlawful way to travel to London? What experiences they faced in this journey is what the film is about.

Plus Points:

Dunki has a very good first half, which majorly relies on comedy. There are a good number of scenes that will tickle the funny bones. Those humor scenes have Hirani mark written all over them. In the promotional content, the comedy part didn’t look much promising, but they were too good in the film. The movie is fast-paced in the first hour without any boring scenes.

Shah Rukh Khan, as a performer, shines in Dunki. For those who missed the class act of Shah Rukh in Pathaan and Jawan, Dunki will fill that void. Especially in the court scene that comes during the second half, SRK depicts that he is not just a star but a good actor, too.

Taapsee Pannu did a fine job, and she has got a solid role in the movie, which is on par with the protagonist. Anil Grover and Vikram Kochhar will leave us in splits with their comedy timing. The makers deserve appreciation for highlighting a subject that people aren’t much aware of. There are a few good moments in the second half.

Minus Points:

When Rajkumar Hirani announced Dunki, everyone wondered what the movie would be about. Slowly, the team started to reveal that Dunki means crossing the borders in an illegal way. So, the biggest challenge for Hirani here was the screenplay. The topic is very difficult to deal with, and the even more difficult part was to tell this concept in a crowd-pleasing manner. While Hirani gets it right with regard to humor, the emotions could have been handled in a much better manner.

Hirani’s earlier works, 3 Idiots, PK, Munna Bhai MBBS, Lage Raho Munna Bhai, and Sanju, had hard-hitting emotional moments, but when it comes to Dunki, Hirani’s mark is missing a bit in this aspect. Vicky Kaushal’s cameo should have been more impactful. The staging of the interval sequence isn’t good, and hence, the desired impact is missing.

Technical Aspects:

Pritam’s songs are good, and the background score by Aman Pant is neat. The production values are decent. The CGI works are a bit shabby in a few scenes. Raju Hirani is also the editor of Dunki, and it seems a few important scenes related to SRK’S backstory are chopped off midway.

It is natural that one expects nothing less than a great film from Rajkumar Hirani, but he did a decent job here. It doesn’t mean that Dunki is a bad film by any means, but having watched the previous works of the director, the expectations are bound to be higher. As said earlier, the emotions could have been showcased more effectively.


On the whole, Dunki deals with an interesting concept, but the execution by Rajkumar Hirani is decent and not great. The humor in the film is very good, but the strong emotions, which used to be the key strength of Rajkumar Hirani are missing a bit in Dunki. There are a few good moments in the second half, but over the end, the film doesn’t give that overwhelming feeling. Shah Rukh Khan does an excellent job, but the movie is also benefitted from the performances of Taapsee, Anil Grover, and Vikram Kochhar. If you are okay with the flaws, then you can give the film a try. Rating: 3/5

Reviewed by Finlyjosh

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