It shouldn't be news to anyone that 3 Idiots surely deserves three cheers, and more.
Aamir's Rancho is actually one such natural genius. He obviously can't fit into an Indian classroom, where all you have to do is mug up, to rise up. He plays the fool. But he still tops the tests. His two friends remain flunkeys throughout.
And that is because, one of them, is burdened by his family's expectations and a fear of exams. The other is passionate about wildlife photography, and not physics.
In India, even now, you should either be in engineering or medicine. It's usually the parents' promissory note. It's also a suicide note for many.
The hilarious skits between the three friends and their dull, dreaded professor here, Virus, played by Boman Irani, reveal a non-stop Munnabhai comedy with a similar purpose.
Rancho takes on Virus and the system. Virus takes on Rancho, and his friends. And one day, Rancho completely disappears. Many years later, his friends go out in search of who he was.
. This is in fact a hardcore Bollywood flick, which demands its own share of subjectivity while you watch many parts of the story fit very conveniently into the larger scheme.
The filmmakers know just when to throw in that emotional low, after a comical high. They know when the song is most appropriate. And when melodrama will do just fine. Very few contemporary Bollywood directors understand this now.