There is a scene in the movie Saala Khadoos , when Madhi and Luxmi have a faceoff. Madhi is fuelled with contempt for her sister who let her down . Lux is feeling threatened as she can see her younger sister doing much better than her. Both are heartbroken , the reasons maybe different but for a second there you think its about the sport they love. More so when Madhi gets punched in the face for saying ‘Ab mein apne liye boxing karungi’. Madhi had never taken ‘boxing’ that seriously ever , she was in it for her sister . Lakshmi , was using the sport [and getting used in the process] to build a police career.
That moment passes off and along with it goes that feeling . Just like for Madhi & Lakshmi it wasn’t about Boxing for most movies about sports it may be about rivalry , relationships or romance but not about sports either.
There’s another scene soon after when Madhi ruins it for us by attributing her passion and spirit to win to her love for her coach and I could hear the pain in my husband’s ‘Whaatt?’ . He literally winced because at that point of time he was more invested in the movie than the lead actress [ who happens to be a real life boxer ] herself.
My husband just might get over Saala Khadoos , thanks to the perennial reruns of Rocky series on TV but what about the movie lovers who want to see more of sports in technicolour?
The problem about movies that explore sports as a larger theme is that a couple of minutes into the story and they lose the track. Sports make a special appearance and vanish before you realize it. The protagonist who plays an athlete is training relentlessly over a sunidhi or a sukhwinder track in one frame and off to Switzerland to sing romantic Shreya or Arijit songs in another. Sports only become an accessory like Cycling in Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikander and I am not saying that’s a terrible thing to do. I am only saying , don’t we deserve a movie that actually is what it claims to be?
Thankfully , we have some classics in recent times to fall back on . So if you ever find yourself gaping ridiculously at the screen when an actor-athlete you were betting your monies on to get the Gold and make the nation proud gets too busy singing hip hop songs , then here’s a sure shot list to get you that much sought adrenaline rush.
Bhag Milkha Bhaag
The poster movie of all fitness freaks. I mean Farhan Akhtar’s mindblowing body transformation aside , the movie is perhaps the best representation of a living legend. The story that touches upon the athletes past , his fears , motivations , flaws and path to glorious victory. The training seemed genuine , the passion seemed real enough to inspire my 3 year old and 35 year old [ son and husband respectively ] , every single time it still comes on TV. The best sport movie so far on celluloid , hands down.
So its the age old story of triumph of human spirit against all odds , but again a super honest attempt at film making yet staying true to the subject of sports. Inspite of the disability the movie doesn’t become a sob story . The interesting characters , the amazing coach-player chemistry and yes , Cricket. Not even a single mainstream star yet the tremendous acting & tight script [ an overall fab package] hits the ball outside the boundary for us.
Chak de India
There are incredibly talented girls , there is our national sport , there is that super charged up ’70 minutes’ speech and then there’s Shahrukh khan at his restrained best. This movie is entertaining and amusing and refreshing all at once. With no item numbers and no high voltage action and no melodrama – is that even possible for a main stream movie? Seems like it is. That whole , cricket vs hockey rivalry – two thumbs up!
Alright alright , not a sports movie. It is actually a movie about a lot of other things but sports . But honestly – didn’t the whole ‘beating them at their own game’ count as being a kick ass sport in itself? The only Amir Khan movie in which he is slightly bearable . And those incredible actors who fill up the frame and stand out and don’t get over shadowed by the bigger star. What I loved about the movie was the whole desi version of ‘bat and ball’. History may or may not ever acknowledge Champaner as the turning point in the British era but ask any movie buff to draw up a list of movies about sports and chances are this one would appear. so why not right?
And last but certainly not the least, Student of the year.
Got you .. just kidding !
So that’s my list as of now . There are more that come close like Kai Po Che but yet don’t make it. So maybe we’ll have to wait for someone to make a Sania’s biography [ which I’ve heard is on the cards] or Sushant’s Dhoni to be so kick ass that it find its entry here. Till then , lets just debate some more why they aren’t such a good sport , when it comes to making movies about sports now . Right?
This post was written , just in time , before the SportsChatter contest got over. Will I be third time lucky ? let’s see.
The SportChatter was organized by The BlogChatter and the TheSportsMirror and the contest closes on 14th Feb. My third entry for a sport contest solely for the love of blogging and my blog buddy is my perfect gift to BlogChatter for Vday. Nice touch right?