Cricket in India is not just a sport, it’s an emotion. And Kabir Khan understood that pulse perfectly. If there is one religion that binds people in India, it has to be Cricket and it will be Cricket for ages. He created a scintillating watch of this epic underdog saga.
We have seen many sports dram from Lagaan to Dangal (my two old favorites), but Kabir Khan’s sports biopic stands out from the rest, for its accurate recreation after 39 years. Its a well-crafted, hugely entertaining spice epic.
Naysayers may say its manipulative, too much sugar coated so on and so forth, but believe me, just ignore them as they never understood and will never understand the billion dreams and the emotional attachment this game has created. I am not denying its dramatized but i feel India’s biggest triumphs needed this treatment to re-trigger the most cherished memory. No Indian sports film to date has probably got its game right. Watching the film, we feel familiarity with the characters and the show-down is a fanaticism for the game of cricket.
Ranveer Singh is a stand out, at times i felt it was real Kapil on field. I have never seen such a perfect casting for each and every player. From body language to dialect used and action that plays out on the field was a treat to watch. This is like homework done right. The Haryana Hurricane and co got the nuances of the game right and the victory can best be described as teamwork makes the dream work. The resemblance of the actors to the 83 winning squad is uncanny.
The show was houseful and cheers were plenty with a final standing ovation is a testimony to what i mentioned above. Interestingly everyone stayed back for the credit rolls which is very rare.
There are some unwanted side plots including Pak border conflicts, broken engagement, crowd fights, Indira Gandhi instructions etc but those are tiny bumps on the road. So if you are cricket fan this is a mandatory watch and for film lovers it's a must watch. Dont give an excuse that you have seen the highlights in YouTube and we all know the story stuff. In the end, the film tugs the old heartstrings, and it is a moving and uplifting experience.
Verdict - 4/5(Do and Die)