Date :- 12/03/2012
Rating :- 4/5
What works :-
- Irrfan Khan. No matter how much one praises his stupendous performance, one still falls short of words. To see him transform from a 20-something young army recruit to a famed athlete to a fearsome dacoit is pure joy & near flawless. Being in almost every frame the onus of the film to work completely rested with him & he not only does justice to it but in fact raises the bar a notch higher.
- There’s a very strong & pertinent emotional core that is at the heart of the story, of exactly what transpires in the life of a person who won accolades for the country to cross over & pick up a gun to become an outlaw. It’s a raw & unhinged portrayal of how ruthlessly the system (which “we” are very much a part of) treats athletes who’ve brought glory to the country once their careers are over, & the movie doesn’t waver from it even once.
- Apart from Irrfan even the bit players like Vipin Sharma, Mahie Gill give terrific performances & Brijendra Kala is simply superb as a scared-to-wits journalist.
- Director Tigmanshu Dhulia competently lays bare the chasm that exists between the “2 India’s” by taking us into the hinterland of the country & smacking us right down with it’s gritty habitat & crude conflicts.
What doesn’t :-
- In the second half, once the internal conflict that the plot is dealing with is resolved for a little while the movie seems to wander aimlessly.
- The shoot out sequences get slightly repetitive towards the end.
Final Word :- ‘Paan Singh Tomar’ tells a riveting story of an individual & has a strong message at its core. Without being preachy it makes us ask ourselves the important question of how we should treat those who bring glory to the nation.