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A movie review: “Bhaag Milkha Bhaag”

July 16, 2013

Bhaag Milkha Bhaag

Last Saturday morning, I decided to take a day off from office and spend the day with my parents. Next Monday, 15th July was my birthday but I couldn’t take a leave on that day because of my job priorities. So, Saturday was the day for my personal celebration. Later that day, my father insisted me to hang around and enjoy the day. So I decided to watch a movie in evening show. My personal favourite movies are science fiction movies. So, obviously my first choice was “Pacific Rim”. I also kept my one eye on “Bhaag Milkha Bhaag”. First I bought a ticket for “Pacific Rim” and then I thought that why not “Bhaag Milkha Bhaag” as well on that same day and therefore I bought another night show ticket for “Bhaag Milkha Bhaag”. Now I don’t want to say much about “Pacific Rim”. It was a disappointment for me. After spending so much money and so many special effects, the result is another Japanese “Godzilla” type movie in Hollywood style.

Lets talk about “Bhaag Milkha Bhaag”. What did I know about Milkha Singh couple of weeks ago? I consider myself as a moderate sports loving person. May be I can talk something about Cricket, but Athletics, nowhere near my knowledge or memory. I only knew that Milkha Singh was called “Flying Sikh” and missed an Olympic Bronze medal in Athletics and that’s all. I wonder how many common Indian even know about Milkha Singh. Before releasing this movie, I observed that there was media hype about this movie and Farhan Akhtar could be seen on TV channels on regular basis. But two things took my attention, one was Milkha Singh himself and the second one was Farhan Akhtar with his new 8 packed body.

I think “Bhaag Milkha Bhaag” is a good movie based on historical facts. I read somewhere that Milkha Singh himself cried after watching this movie which is a portrayal of his own life. He even said that this movie resembles 95% of his life story. After watching this movie, when I decided to write about this movie, I also thought that I would have to know more about Milkha Singh and his life before writing anything at all. Now I can say that I liked the movie but I thought this movie has been stretched little more than it should have been by the director Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra. People generally want to witness the history of India by their own eyes even in celluloid. Entertainment is a factor but songs and dances by the hero himself are absolutely unnecessary in these kinds of films. Background scores or songs and title songs are more suitable but these types of movies do not need its hero singing and dancing by himself in typical Bollywood style to add more entertainment value to the movie. May be it is a movie making formula viable for commercial success. Anyway I didn’t like Farhan Akhtar singing and dancing in this movie. I am not a big fan of Farhan Akhtar for his acting but what I like about him is his body. Nobody needs to tell me that how much dedication and self control over daily routine and food habit are required besides regular exercises in gym to build that kind of athletic but not bulky body. It looks fantastic and equally matched with his character in this movie. I guess this whole project of “Bhhag Milkha Bhaag” was long programmed and well planned. Director Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra must have thought well to choose actors for every character. Then how did he choose Dalip Tahil as Jawaharlal Nehru? It was a disaster. If you really think that Dalip Tahil matches Jawaharlal Nehru, then I am afraid I have to say that I definitely look like Brad Pit. Jokes apart, I think it was a mistake done by the director. I also think that Yograj Singh (the father of Yuvraj Singh and renowned Punjabi Movie actor) who played the role of Indian coach Ranveer Singh, took excessive make ups. Since this movie is supposed to be considered as a family movie, the director could have avoided the adult scenes in this movie done by Farhan Akhtar and the Australian Actress Rebecca Breeds who played the role of Stella (the grand daughter of Australian athletics coach who was appointed as the support stuff of Indian athletics team in 1956 Melbourne Olympic Games).

Milkha Singh
Farhan Akhtar and Milkha Singh  
 I want to mention specially about Divya Dutta (played the role of Isri Kaur, Milkha Singh's elder sister) and Pawan Malhotra (played the role of Milkha Singh's coach Gurudev Singh) because both of them acted so brilliantly and of course Master Jabtej Singh who played young Milkha Singh and Sonam Kapoor as Biro for their fantastic acting. Another small but good role was the Indian army instructor played by Prakash Raj. It really added little comic yet serious flavour to the movie. I will conclude this review by saying that I have seen a good sports oriented movie after “Chak De! India” and “Bhaag Milkha Bhaag” definitely will increase interests among young Indians about athletics, the glory of winning an Olympic medal and the sense of nationality for being an Indian.

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