Banner: Walkwater Media & Victory Moving Pictures
Producer: Manmohan Shetty, Ajitpal Mangat
Director: Ajitpal Mangat
Cast: Hurman Baweja, Amirta Rao, Anupam Kher, Gulshan Grover
It’s funny how so many Hindi films about cricket have been made and none of them have actually managed to enthrall. Victory is no different from the rest of these Hindi films based on cricket. Like them, it too is boring.
The film traces the rise, fall and rise again of cricketer Vijay Shekawat (Hurman Baweja). It begins with his humble beginnings in Rajasthan and moves onto his selection in the Indian cricket team, following him through his flamboyant lifestyle and the wrong decisions he makes only to realize them and correct them.
The crucial elements in the film include, the showcase of his proud father who is ecstatic about his son’s selection and later cuts off all ties following his wild antics and terming as a traitor. Also in the picture during all this is Nandini (Amrita Rao) who is the backbone of Vijay, like a true friend and lover she stands by him.
What is incomprehensible and hard to fathom is the fact that, how does one become a traitor if an injury is not reported to the Indian cricket coach? Does a cricketer become a traitor if he loses a match because of this unreported injury?
The film’s story is limited; it’s more like a case of making the movie as you go along than actually coming up with the sturdy and strong script. So you see Vijay make it to the top and because you need an action they decide to term him traitor and have him shunned by family and friends. Since you need to add more to the film, they decide to have his father undergo a brain hemorrhage. And because a Hero never does wrong, his downfall has to be marked by new success. That’s precisely what the film does.
Predictable, seems like an understatement for this film, even before the title has finished rolling and Baweja has uttered his first sentence you know how the film is going to pan out. Honestly that isn’t even the problem, the main problem is despite the predictability there is no effort to do anything novel or work around it.
While in the first half you see the rise and fall of Vijay Shekawat, in the second half you see him suffer through a back injury and reach new heights. So to put it short, none of the halves are better!
Dialogues through the film are excessively bland, there isn’t a single line that inspires or you even want to remember. Filled with unwanted reactions, the film has you giggle at even the most serious of places. Like the part where a sad Baweja is sitting like a loner in his burnt haveli only to be disturbed by an angry and yelling Rao, the scene has you totally confused.
The characters in the film seem half baked and the seriousness of the game seems to be missed out completely. The film delves into so many aspects of Baweja’s character that the core concept is treated with laxity. There are so many brands flying at you in the film that even as in film placements nothing excepting Airtel and perhaps Reebok sticks in you mind. That too because Airtels infamous tune is used well and Reebok’s placement is consistent and prominent. You could walk in and walk out of the film and chances are you wouldn’t have missed a thing.
The film flows so slowly that beyond a point you feel like hitting forward on the remote you carried from home. The great thing about the film is that it looks great and the filters used does wonders for the film. The good background score adds to the film but the actions on screen take away from it. There are a few memorable moments in the film but those too are very few in number. What is a delight to see is a ton of cricket icons grace the Indian screen; from Brett Lee to Sanath Jayasurya they all are there.
When it comes to performances, Kher who plays a happy man in the first half and grumpy in the second, is the best but he’s still mediocre and so you can imagine. Baweja acts ok but when it comes to delivering the lines it seems like a mismatch. Like the scene where he in the stadium with Rao, telling her about his dreams. It’s dry. Rao seems friskier than anything, she disappoints greatly. Grover as the bad man is reasonable.
Victory is certainly not yours to claim. This film is tedious and there is very little to enjoy. You’d rather go turn on the sports channel and have a ball.