Neeraj Pandey, who is best known for his off beat cinema and a few brilliantly directed movies like A Wednesday, Special 26 and Baby brings for us and all the MSD fans another special movie.
The first-half of the movie is brilliant where the roller-coaster journey of a middle-class boy and his struggles are shown perfectly. His father’s tension of MSD getting a secure job and focusing on his studies, yet not stopping him from following his heart is captured very nicely and it could not have been projected on screen by anyone except Anupam Kher. The life of Dhoni as a cricketer looking for getting a big opportunity while missing some very close chances and then trying his luck as a ticket collector just to see his father happy are some points that stuck the right chords in the movie. The important roles that Dhoni’s friends, coaches and close family played in his real life are depicted really well in the reel life as well.
The transformation of Sushant Singh Rajput into Mahendra Singh Dhoni is outstanding. Right from MSD’s way of walking to carrying his bat, also the popular ‘helicopter shot’ Sushant does a xerox copy. His performance is so natural and realistic that nowhere do you feel ‘ki yeh toh zyada ho gaya’.
Some glances of Dhoni’s co-cricketers are also shown with real clippings of his famous matches where Dhoni’s face is swapped with Sushant’s. As well as a positive angle on Yuvraj Singh is nice to watch.
While Disha Patani and Kiara Adwani both look beautiful and justify their short roles, yet the second half of the movie is a weak point in this 3 hours and 10 minutes long film. Every cricket fan would feel that after showing Team India’s terrible loss of 2007 50-overs World Cup, there should have been a sequence which showed how Dhoni got the captaincy. After showing his first love story which ends on a tragic note, the film just lands directly into the 2007 T20 World cup final ball. Also, there isn’t any mention of the controversies that Dhoni was indirectly involved into or had to face.
On the whole, the movie focuses only on the personal life of Dhoni and how a small-town guy chases his dreams and wins a World Cup for India. Its an entertainer and with no big budget or big star movie coming up till Diwali, it has blockbuster written all over it. Give it a try! The 2011 World Cup final over six will give you goosebumps again!
WhatteFilm’s rating: 3 and a half stars