By SI Commenter Mnx542
Watched Dhoni today in Chennai.
Sad to see that including me, there were only about 30 people in the theater with a capacity of over 310.
I was a bit doubtful about how the movie would turn out to be but all my doubts vanished as the movie started playing.
A very good movie, I must say.
Dhoni – Off the Beaten Track
For starters, it ain’t a love story and it ain’t your run of the mill, cliche-ridden Tamil movie.
Dhoni is also not just about the relationship between a father and son.
Dhoni is about how parents put a lot of mental pressure on their children without even taking an iota of effort to understand what their child’s true interests are.
Every parent drives his child to study harder and harder, score above 90%, pursue a course which THEY want their child to do etc, while not even caring about what the child really wants to do, what his talents are and all that.
All they want is for their child to study, and study hard, thereby putting a lot of mental stress on their child’s mind, ultimately resulting in many student suicides (There have been many incidents in India about students committing suicide because they can’t handle the pressure).
Among those parents is Subramaniam (Prakash Raj), a middle-class widower with two children, a 14 year old boy named Karthick and his younger sister Kaveri.
Subramaniam is a government servant but his income is insufficient to run the family and support his children’s education. Thus, he often borrows money from a loan shark Ghani.
Like all parents, Subramaniam wants both his children to study well and enrolls them in one of the best schools in the city. He wants his son Karthick to pursue MBA and get into a respectable job.
But for Karthick, cricket means life.
M.S. Dhoni is his inspiration and he aspires to become a great cricketer like MSD. His passion for cricket is so high that he doesn’t hesitate to even skip classes to attend cricket coaching, even as his exams are nearing.
The movie nicely touches upon how Subramaniam toils hard to make ends meet and how much he gets frustrated when his son doesn’t pay heed to his advice and continues to focus only on cricket while completely ignoring his studies.
With the loan shark Ghani constantly pursuing him in order to get back the loan with interest, Karthick’s school principal complaining to him that his son is useless, his daughter coming of age (In Tamil Nadu, normally there is function of some sort conducted to mark the event.. even for this, he had to borrow a lot of money), his son not even showing an inch of interest in studies with his exams nearing, Subbu finally reaches his breaking point.
In a fit of rage, he breaks Karthick’s cricket bat and angrily pushes him away, which results in Karthick being severely injured on the head and slipping into a coma.
What happens next forms the rest of Dhoni’s story.
Prakash Raj Shines
Prakash Raj dazzles in the role of the father, struggling hard to make ends meet. In each and every scene, he brings tons of life to the character of Subramaniam.
No words to describe his wonderful performance.
In my opinion, this is his career-best. It was a joy to watch him on the screen.
I liked Radhika Apte as Nalini too.
She looked pretty and did a nice job in the acting department.
As for the boy who plays Karthick, he’s OK. He literally has nothing to do in the second half, as he lies in a coma till the end.
Now for the Music
The songs are nice but not the best of IR.
Thaavi Thaavi pogum was my favorite closely followed by Vilayaata Padagotty (whatever that means).
A pleasant revelation is that the picturization of all the songs were decent.
No silly dances, no globe-trotting to foreign locations.
A welcome relief.
The positives aside, like all other Tamil movies, Dhoni is not without flaws.
But to me, those flaws were minor and didn’t bother me much. The movie has a few far-fetched scenes but it wasn’t a deterrent as Prakash Raj’s wonderful performance made me forget everything.
The movie also turns preachy at times.
Dhoni – Go for It
I strongly recommend the movie to everyone, especially parents.
This will probably be an eye-opener to parents who put undue pressure into their child’s minds.
Btw, Dhoni is Prakash Raj’s debut directorial venture in Tamil.
I’m impressed. He’s also the producer and screenplay writer.
Well, this is one man who knows his job.