Sanjay Mehra (Rakesh Roshan) is an Indian scientist in Canada and his whole life has been dedicated to discovering life on other planets. This he has been doing by using his computer to scout the skies for any signals and to send out signals himself in the hope they might be picked up by an extraterrestrial intelligence. And one night, against the odds, he succeeds, receiving a reply that stuns him and his pregnant wife Sonia (Rekha), but once he goes to see his superiors at the lab, they laugh him out of the building, unwilling to believe. Yet contact is made, and Sanjay's next encounter will be on a nighttime country road - where tragedy strikes.
Yeah, cheers for that Space Brothers, for what do they do? They only run Sanjay and Sonia off the road, causing the car to crash and explode, killing the scientist. Sonia is thrown free, but her baby is born with brain damage and ends up growing into the learning difficulties-afflicted adult Rohit (Hrithik Roshan - son of the director and the bloke who was playing his dad earlier on). At this point, for some reason Rohit still goes to school, determined to graduate after all these years but regularly foiled, though there is a small spark of hope in his future if he can get his dad's computer up and running once more.
Bollywood isn't exactly well known for its science fiction movies, so Koi... Mil Gaya (meaning I Found Someone) was something of a novelty, and coined the Indian E.T. for its escapades with a little fellow who shows up about a third of the way through. As if not quite convinced that the fantastical elements would succeed on their own, lucky old Rohit gets to charm back in town beauty Nisha (Preity Zinta) although they get off on the wrong foot at their first meeting when he and his schoolkid friends fool her into taking them to the cinema, then he later pours a meal over her by mistake.
But the path to true love never did run smooth, and you might have thought that the fact of Rohit's mental state might be the biggest stumbling block, but it actually turns out to be an asset, especially when he and Nisha get the old computer working again and cause a ginormous flying saucer to visit their town, dumbfounding the locals. This is where the E.T. bit comes into it, because after the aliens' visit they leave one of their number behind, a little blue chap possessed of powers unknown on planet Earth. Rohit and company befriend Jadoo (as they name him) and he has a beneficial effect on the manchild: suddenly, he can work out equations, play basketball like Michael Jordan and sees his I.Q. skyrocket.
So we've got E.T., and we also have a bit of Charly, Close Encounters of the Third Kind makes an appearance, there's even The Absent-Minded Professor for the basketball match. Fortunately, the film embraces these influences and Roshan's performance wisely never patronises the character, but nevertheless there are bizarre aspects to be taken into account. During one musical number Jadoo begins to resemble the alien from Mac and Me with his love for a certain fizzy drink (not aversed to product placement, this one), and the sequence of notes designed to attract the aliens is unmistakably Trans-Europe Express by Kraftwerk. Does this mean Ralf, Florian and the boys hail from another planet? Let's hope so. And not even Steven Speilberg transformed Elliott into a Chuck Norris-styled man of action at the end of his opus, as happens here - it might well have been an improvement. But all in all, this is a lighthearted run through various emotions, a bit of a mishmash, but winningly presented.