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‘Ghoomar’ Movie Review – A Tale of Triumph

by Mansi Gadre   ·  10 months ago   ·  
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Balki, Saiyami and Abhishek pitch in to bowl you over in a refreshing story of the human spirit in the feel-good sports movie Ghoomer.

 

It had been a long time since I had watched a Bollywood movie in a theatre, and I was craving for a feel- good, clean movie which I could watch with my daughter. So, we took a much-needed break from work commitments, school projects and the anxiety of the upcoming examinations and decided to watch this sports-survival drama. So, here’s my honest review of the movie Ghoomar.

What is the Story of Ghoomer About?

Ghoomer is inspired by the story of the real-life Hungarian shooter who had only one hand – his left– to work with. He won a gold medal in the 25-meter rapid-fire pistol event at the 1948 London Olympics. 

Ghoomar is not about the politics within the team, the selection committee or the financial struggles of a sportsperson. It breaks free from the norms of a sports movie to give you a powerful story of human resilience and the drive to rise above all challenges. 

Directed by R. Balki, the film stars Saiyami Kher, Abhishek Bachchan, Shabana Azmi, Angad Bedi, and Amitabh Bachchan among others. 

The story is about Anina (Saiyami Kher), a flawless batter who was selected to play for the Indian team. However, she meets with an accident that leads to the amputation of her right arm. Her dreams are shattered; she loses all will to live when Padam Singh Sodhi aka Paddy (Abhishek Bachchan), an alcoholic ex-bowler of the Indian cricket team coaches her against all odds. Anina becomes Paddy’s purpose through which both Anina and Paddy find fulfilment. Anina makes a comeback as a spinner and achieves her dream to play for India. 

Ghoomar promises to be an inspirational, emotional and progressive family movie. Ghoomar’s simple storyline may not have any surprises for its viewers but even in its predictability, it is a thrilling joy ride for the audience. I found myself celebrating Anina’s success, and regretting the fateful accident, sympathising with her struggle to revive and relating to the angry outburst of Paddy. Its story of human resilience in adversity strikes the right chord with the audience.

R. Balki manages to charm the audience throughout the movie with entertaining and witty dialogue, which is a winner. Paddy drives a message when he says, “Right se bhi Anina aur Left se bhi Anina”. He reveals his tragic journey when he says, “Loser kya mehsoos karta hain…..I know…I also want to know winners kya mehsoos karte hain”. One cannot help but smile when Anina tells her Dadi (Shabana Azmi), “Kitna underacting karogi, thoda emotions toh dikhao”. 

Is Ghoomer a Good Movie?

Balki is well-informed about the intricacies of cricket, and it shows in the issues that he raises about the game. For instance, the film talks about how the game favours the batsmen. He also relates the sport to science and psychology while showing how Anina uses the knowledge to her advantage. Though the struggle and eventual success are well depicted, the movie would have fallen flat had it not been for its interesting characters, plot and vivid storytelling that keeps us hooked. Balki addresses some important issues seamlessly in the story through his characters. 

Dadi is endearing as the strong, sporty, unsentimental grandma who calls herself a Roger Federer fan and pushes Anina to fulfil her destiny. Sivendra Singh Dungarpur plays Anina’s adorable, god-fearing father and is a welcome change from the stereotypical depiction of gender roles in Hindi films. Similarly, Angad Bedi, Anina’s boyfriend doesn’t mind carrying the cricket kit for her. Ivana Das is shown as a trans character shunned by her family and supported by Paddy and their bonding is one of the highlights of the film. 

Saiyami pulls off her character as a cricketer very efficiently. She has the right body language, and her game technique and acting both show credibility. Shabana Azmi’s role may be small, but she charms us with her wit every time she comes on screen. She stands rock solid with Anina throughout her struggle and her strong presence in the protagonist’s life is undeniable. Angad Bedi plays the role of a supportive boyfriend with ease. His frustration after the accident, his acceptance when Paddy tells him not to interfere and his joy every time Anina overcomes a hurdle seems natural and not forced upon him. 

Ghoomer is a Well Thought and Performed Film

However, it is Abhishek Bachchan who is the true lifeline of the film. He has delivered a touching performance as Paddy, a one-test wonder who lives a secluded life and attempts to drown his sorrows in alcohol. His didactic and ruthless personality is layered with bitterness, hope, regret, focus and recklessness but one cannot help falling in love with him. 

Amit Trivedi’s music is soulful and evokes the right emotions. So does Vishal Sinha’s photography. Amitabh Bachchan’s cameo is refreshing and provides a much-needed breather in the drama towards the end of the film. 

What Didn’t Work for Ghoomer

There are many reasons to watch the movie, the most important of which is its feel-good factor. It inspires us to be positive, optimistic in any situation, especially the most challenging ones. 

The first half of the movie builds the characters beautifully and progresses the story well to look forward to the second half. 

However, the movie slowly loses its grip after the intermission. Balki adds too much drama in an attempt to raise our spirits. The melodrama is unbridled where every stroke and every ball is accompanied by breathlessness and a dancing frenzy. The film drives itself to excesses because by no stretch of the imagination can cricket be a ‘baayen haath ka khel’. 

Despite it all, the movie is sincere, affecting and moving.  

Can you Watch Ghoomer with Your Children? 

By all means, yes! There are many lessons to be learned from the film and there are inherent positive messages that the movie conveys for children. The film is about hope in adversity and a ‘never give up’ attitude which are important values for children. In fact, we should make it a point to watch sports-themed movies with kids. There are a lot of lessons that even we, as adults can learn from watching these films.

My daughter certainly felt inspired after watching the movie and proceeded to set a few goals for herself once we were back home. So Ghoomer does achieve its purpose. 

To Conclude my Review of Ghoomer

“Yeh zindagi logic ka nahi…magic ka khel hai”. Ghoomar talks about passion, sincerity, resilience and hope. It is family friendly which sets it apart from the overdose of loaded content. It is made with earnestness, taking us along the dream magically spun by Balki.

All in all, we Indians love a good masala movie and Ghoomer has all the right ingredients for a flavourful dish. 

Our Verdict: Watch the movie and get Ghoomered into this feel-good joyride. 

 

Author : Mansi Gadre

Mansi finds solace in exploring new horizons and loves to weave tales that talk about travel, parenting, and life’s myriad experiences. A marketer, teacher, content writer, and above all a mother, she will take you on a journey of discovery guided by the wisdom of an educator, the curiosity of an artist, and the soul of a wanderer.

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