Dangal is an emotionally made biographical tale that talks about a former National level wrestler who could not win a Gold medal for India due to his personal commitments but fulfills his wish by making his two daughters win medals at the Commonwealth Games. It is not the first time we are witnessing a film that speaks about a wrestler’s life, but no matter how many films you might have watched, Dangal stands unique in a lot of ways. Director Nitesh Tiwari has to be credited for the way he has treated the film with not much force fitted theatrics yet grabbing the attention of the audience throughout the film. Yes, there were one or two dramatic moments which looked essential for the script and they were not overdone.
The performances are riveting and the visuals are stunning. The wrestling sequences are brutally realistic and were shot so well. Aamir Khan proves yet again why he is called Mr. Perfectionist. He only plays a guiding role here and lets the girls who play his daughters in the film take the center stage on most occasions. Not sure how many stars of his caliber would attempt to do a role like this. And the amount of effort that he has put in this film to gain weight and look old and then to lose weight to look like a real wrestler and that too for a flashback portion that hardly travels for 10 minutes, he deserves a bag full of appreciation.
But let’s not forget the show stealers, Fatima Sana Shaikh (Geeta) and Sanya Malhotra (Babita), the girls who played Aamir Khan’s daughters. They showed great intensity and grit when it came to the wrestling sequence and also performed equally well when they had to enact an emotional scene. Zaira Wasim and Suhani Bhatnagar, who played the younger version of Geeta and Babita made their screen time count as well. Nitesh has extracted some great acting from all the supporting artist too. Not a single frame looked amateurish.
Dangal is adequately supported by three technicians, Pritam (Music), Sethu Sriram (Camera) and Ballu Saluja (Cuts). All three did their job picture perfect. A heartwarming music, a camera that had captured wrestling like never before and an editor who stood as an unsung hero.
Finally, we have a film that talks about the real struggle of a wrestler. How much they had to lose to win a medal for the nation? People who watch this film might never take wrestling as their profession, but one thing is for certain, the respect for the sport will undoubtedly increase.
[ Reviewed after a special preview show on Wednesday, Dec 21st. Movie releases on Friday, Dec 23rd. ]