Salesh Dipak Fernando


Dangal – This was supposed to have been a movie which highlights girl power.  I wish it had been about them alone with a father figure who merely stays away from the limelight and guides the girls. Instead what I see is a father figure who merely shoves his dreams upon his daughters and girls too meekly surrender. There is no question of choice or free will here. The moment they decide to rebel and make a choice. They fall and go back to their old regressive ways. Either Surrender or you will fail.  Just when a generation starts to rebel a movie like once again justifies the flaws of the generation gone by. How long do you justify the idea of living someone else’s dreams?

Don’t get me wrong Dangal is one of the better films of the year. But the core premise disturbed me especially when it’s an Aamir Khan film.  Whenever it’s about the four girls alone ie the girls who play Geetha and Babitha and their younger versions the film shines as you relate to their insecurities, rebellious attitude and their eventual triumph. Even Sakshi Tanwar lights up the frame whenever she comes on screen.

And now let me to come to the eternal muddle that is Aamir Khan.  I love his choice of films. Atleast they convey a message. But I dislike Aamir Khan the actor for two reasons. For too long the tag of perfectionist hangs on him rather loosely. If constant makeover in terms of physique and make up is acting then God save Bollywood. There is something called emoting which has been missing from Aamir Khan’s skillset for a long time.  It is as if he fixed one single expression per film and makes it a standard template from beginning to end. The Owl like Scorn with the same serious expression. The face muscles never seem to move. There’s one brief moment towards the very end when Aamir  shines.

The true heroes of the film are the actors who play the cousin’s role at various points in the film. The humour is genuine and leaves you in splits

The standard sports movie template exists here too.

A passionate protagonist – Check.

A mid film crisis where the supposed champion falters – Check

A useless good for nothing National coach – Check.

A come from behind underdog win – Check

The final moments of Patriotism – Check

Isn’t there any other way a sports film can be made?

Pritam’s music is a different story altogether. It is almost like an exception and lifts an average film to a good one. Each of the songs suit the mood of the situation and gives it a different flavour.

Nitesh Tiwari attempts to bring to the screen the real life struggle of the Phogat Sisters and partially succeeds in it too.

Go watch it for the girls, the music and the humour. Definitely one of the better sports film in India but not the best.

My rating 3/5










  1. I watched it on the opening day itself and loved it to some extent. The dedication of the girls in the movie need to be appreciated. I felt Aamir had little to portray in the movie. This was more of Geeta’s story than Mahavir’s.

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