The most (or the only) celebrated sport of the country is undoubtedly Cricket. However the only cricket based movies that could click were Lagaan and Iqbal. Rest of them like Chain khuli ki main khuli and even the much promoted Azhar couldn’t create an impact. The latest is from Neeraj Pandey whose genre has been thrillers so far and he has been marvelous. However this time, he is dealing with a biopic of a person who is very much shining in his career, which is very unusual. This rarity plus the never-ever-before promotions made me skeptical.
Thankfully, it turned out to be a decent fare. The movie’s caption – The Untold story stands true because the film length majorly consists of his childhood, the youth, his ups and downs, his family, his love-life. The cricket match footages are given a less duration rightly because the audience being majorly cricket frenzy know the highlights of his game on the field.
Being a son of a pump contractor, coming from a lower-middle class family, Dhoni’s (played by Sushant Singh Rajput) story is a simple story of hard work and staying focused in life. The movie doesn’t rush to show the older Dhoni. It instead spends deserving time on his childhood to showcase his determination and composed nature. Then comes the Under-19 Dhoni, where the start showing Sushant using awful CG to make him look that age which was a major letdown when the adult Dhoni story takes off.
Initially he doesn’t make it to the team, and he celebrates that day so that he will remember it throughout his life. That scene defines the composure and maturity. He ends up becoming Ticket Collector but does it dutifully to not hurt his dad. The first half has lot of the untold story which the caption was talking about. The second half shows his career and love life once he finds a place in the Indian team. A significant time is spent on his love life with some montages.
The film runs smoothly even though it is for more than 3 hours. One major problem with the film is there is not too much depth in the content. Especially, a sports film ought to have something for the adrenaline rush. The adrenaline rush is only limited to the matches footage for which we cannot give credit to the writer. A movie quickly moves on from a tragic scene before the viewer even starts feeling bad for it. The soundtrack could have been much better. Amaal Malik for such a film?
Performances were flawless. No one could have done as well as Sushant. It feels, he really understood what Dhoni is all about. From the body to body language to the spoken-English, Sushant has nailed it. Anupam Kher, a regular in Pnadey’s films was brilliant. Rajesh Sharma and Kumud Mishra leave their mark too.
On the whole, the film is worth a watch. Keeping it engaging for 3hours is not a joke. It’s just that the film doesn’t fall into the mind-blowing category of films.