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Dunki vs. Zero vs. Dilwale: Shah Rukh Khan’s 7-Day Box Office Total Reveals Strongest Christmas Film in 8 Years, Yet Presents the Weakest Cause for Celebration

Shah Rukh Khan’s Dunki has finally hit the 150 crore mark, a respectable figure but leaving it with a daunting task: reaching 200 crore in the remaining four days of 2023. While undeniably his best Christmas release in terms of box office numbers since 2011, does it truly deserve a celebratory crown?

Over the past 12 years, SRK has graced the Christmas screen with four films: Don 2, Dilwale, Zero, and now Dunki. But box office figures alone don’t paint the whole picture. Don 2 and Dilwale, despite decent collections, faced mixed reviews. Zero, sadly, fell short of expectations.

Leaving Zero Behind: Compared to SRK’s last Christmas venture, the Aanand L Rai’s “Zero,” Dunki registers a clear victory. Zero’s underwhelming performance with a lifetime collection of 89 crores pales in comparison to Dunki’s current 152 crores (and counting).

The 100 Crore Weekend and Clash Royale: Dunki’s 100+ crore opening weekend outshines both Dilwale (65 crores) and Zero (59 crores). However, history seems to repeat itself with box office clashes. Just like Zero faced off against KGF: Chapter 1 and Dilwale battled Bajirao Mastani, Dunki locked horns with Prabhas’ Salaar. While these clashes undoubtedly affect collections, Dunki seems to be holding its own.

Dunki: Year-ender and Box Office Hopeful? Similar to Dilwale in 2015, Dunki is the final release of the year. Interestingly, Dilwale, despite the Bajirao Mastani clash, managed a respectable lifetime collection of 148 crores. Can Dunki follow suit and possibly even surpass it?

The Jury’s Still Out: While Dunki’s financial performance surpasses its recent Christmas predecessors, calling it a definitive success requires a wait-and-see approach. Critical reception remains lukewarm, leaving questions about its overall impact.

A glimmer of Christmas magic? Perhaps Dunki isn’t the triumphant Christmas return fans might have imagined, but it offers a ray of hope. It proves SRK’s star power endures and his Christmas outings still hold commercial viability. Dunki may not be a resounding victory, but it’s a cautious step towards the magic of past Christmas releases.

Ultimately, whether Dunki redeems SRK’s Christmas legacy depends on your perspective. From a purely financial standpoint, it’s a success. But if we seek a film that resonates with both critics and audiences, a true Christmas gift for all, then Dunki might still have some wrapping paper to shed.

Ziya Khan


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