Knock out! A total 10 count knock out!!

What do you call it when you have tears in your eyes throughout a two hour forty minute movie because you are experiencing every emotion ranging from sheer happiness to the pain of evolution to exhilaration fueled by grit? I call it a paisa gazab ka wasool watch!

Aamir Khan is the epitome of quality over quantity. He may only make a movie every year or two but his attention to detail clearly pays off for the viewer, at the box office and most importantly for the final work he produces.

Imagine a man who has the determination to alter every inch of his body to fit the part will likely have left no stone unturned to research the world of wrestling before making this piece of work.

The casting director deserves a big fat hug for finding THE most appropriate Geetas and Babitas there could have possibly been. Both the younger and grown up versions of them are born actresses.

A majority of the story is narrated by Mahavir Singh Phogat’s (Aamir’s character) nephew, which gives the script the flavor of a perfect third party narrated bestselling novel. The tone is carefully measured, the jokes are subtle and on point, the dialogues are crisp – never too much or too little. Not a hint of Bollywoodesque over-dramatization, masaalapanti or plain out popular tastelessness.

One may question a father’s cruel ways of raising his daughters to fulfill his dreams, not asking if it’s theirs too, but a beautiful scene between three girls so craftily puts into perspective the difference between no dream and “a” dream. Sometimes it’s better to give your children direction than not giving them anything at all except a bleak beaten future.

This movie touches upon so many topics, including the obvious one of women empowerment. What caught my attention was the relationship between a father and his children. Often, children discount their parents’ advice or never even truly seek it because they don’t trust it will help them reach their goals. They believe progress lies in places outside their parents’ reach and unknowingly follow paths that are regressive rather than progressive. Yet, a parent swallows the pain and stands behind their children like a solid wall of support. I saw many shades of my own father’s journey in this story. Despite what he thinks may be the right course of life things have developed differently in our lives. Yet, time and again he continues to be on our sides every step of the way. (I know he will likely not be reading this but here goes a silent Thank You to my father.)

It’s hard to make a good film but you know what’s harder? To make a film like Dangal after a Mary Kom and a Sultan and still make the other two look like they bit the dust! (10/10)



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