Remembering Irrfan Khan: 5 times when we couldn’t stop loving him

Debarati Palit Singh
Friday, 1 May 2020

From the numerous memorable performances that the actor has given, Sakal Times picks his five best that you could watch on Netflix, Amazon Prime, Disney Hotstar, etc.

In the last two-and-half days, the Indian entertainment space has gone poorer by volumes, losing two of its gem performers in Rishi Kapoor and Irrfan Khan. 

This is about Irrfan, a man who started his career with television, went on to do numerous films both in Bollywood and Hollywood. He worked in commercial entertainers and independent films in his more than a three-decade-long career. It’s hard to pick any particular role that’s stayed with us. Haasil, The Namesake, Slumdog Millionaire, 7 KhoonMaaf, Haider, Life of Pi, Piku – you can’t pick just one. Diving into his sea of memorable acts, we present five best roles according to us. 

How about celebrating his life by watching these classics!

Maqbool (2003)
The actor played the title role in the Vishal Bharadwaj-directorial, adapted from William Shakespeare’s Macbeth. Actors like Pankaj Kapoor and Tabu supported him.

The actor played the character of the right-hand man of a powerful underworld don, who is secretly in love with the don’s mistress. Irrfan emoted the struggle and plight of a man torn between his duty and love so well; it’s hard to imagine anyone else in that role. The last scene, when he comes to meet his newborn child at the hospital, is our all-time favourite. 

Available on Disney Hotstar, Google Play, YouTube

Hindi Medium (2017)
Here, Irrfan played a father who desires to get his daughter admitted in a prestigious English medium school and ready to go to any lengths to fulfil that dream. He made the character of Raj Batra so relatable and fun to watch. 

From the initial scene, where we see him selling a saree to potential customers to the last one, his performance was brilliant. The sequel to the film titled Angrezi Medium had released last month but was badly affected because of COVID-19.

Available on Amazon Prime, Google Play, YouTube

Life in a… Metro (2007)
Though Life in a Metro had different stories and characters, the one featuring Monty (played by Irrfan) is perhaps the most memorable one. He played the straightforward and socially inept Monty with a great ease. The scene where he meets Konkona Sen Sharma for the first time and keeps staring at her upper body was hilarious and so was his explanation later that he was just being honest and checking out something he had liked. That’s the thing with Irrfan; he could make each character so relatable.

Available on Netflix, Google Play, YouTube

Paan Singh Tomar (2012)
The film, inspired by a real-life story, saw Irrfan play a character who goes through different phases in life. He joins the army but opts for the athletic team because there’s no restriction on a diet. Later, circumstances force him to become a rebel, and he gets into extortion and kidnapping of businessmen. Because he was shown racing for the Indian army in the film, he had to physically transform himself, apart from working on his emotional arch. His emotions are so raw that you feel for the character. The film fetched him a National Award.

Available on Netflix

The Lunch Box (2013)
Irrfan as Saajan Fernandes, the lonely widower, is adorable. The film, which is one of the actor’s highest grossers, also starred Nimrat Kaur, a married woman who exchange letters with Saajan. 

The subtle and mature love story between the two characters is touching. The loneliness he is facing in life, the happiness and eagerness he experiences while waiting for his dabba — Irrfan brought out all this through his eyes and body language. The Lunch Box is one of the most loved films internationally and has been to several film festivals.

Available on Netflix

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