Is Ranveer Singh's '83' worth the hype?

Is Ranveer Singh's '83' worth the hype?

'83' revolves around India's journey in the 1983 cricket World Cup

Ranveer Singh in a still from '83'. Credit: Twitter/@taran_adarsh

Noted director Kabir Khan's latest movie 83 hit the screens on December 24, receiving rave reviews from cinephiles. The positive word of mouth, however, did not help it soar at the box office. It raked in nearly Rs 15 crore on an opening day, failing to beat Sooryavanshi. The sports drama didn't witness much growth on Christmas. It stayed stable on the weekdays but wasn't able to live up to expectations. So, is the biggie worth the hype? Here is a look at why the film is worth a watch despite its mixed box office results.

Not a 'filmi' sports drama

MS Dhoni did extremely well at the box office as it had a compelling narrative, which featured pretty much everything--right from romantic songs to family elements-- that one expects from a commercial drama. On the other hand, 83 is a different experience for movie buffs compared to Neeraj Pandey's magnum opus. The narrative focused more on cricket than the backstory of the characters involved. The songs were woven into the narrative and there was no scope for romance.   While these aspects diluted its commercial viability, especially in mass centres. they made the film feel more authentic.

Ranveer in new light

Ranveer Singh's work in films such as Bajirao Mastani and Padmaavat has led to the perception that he is best suited for larger-than-life/eccentric characters. With 83, he has proved that he is capable of a  lot more. The Befikre hero transforms into Kapil Dev with effortless ease and imitates his distinct accent without reducing the character to a caricature. Ranveer brings out Paaji's vulnerable/softer side in a sequence involving a press conference. His scenes with wife Deepika Padukone, who plays Romi Dev, are as tender as can be and touch upon Kapil's aspires as a child.

Also read | Felt duty-bound to my nation: Ranveer Singh on '83' performance

Not a one-character show

A film featuring multiple characters can work only if each individual gets ample scope to shine. This is exactly where 83 shines as it does justice to each legend who was associated with India's journey in the 1983 Cricket World Cup Jiiva, who plays Krishnamachari Srikkanth, hits the right notes in the 'mad captain' sequence. Similarly, Pankaj Tripathi brings P R Man Singh to life, impressing with his 'flavour wali Hindi'. The self-made actor, who was criticised for playing a gangster in one series/film too many, gives proof of his versatility as this character is as different from 'Kaleen' as chalk from cheese.

A tribute to cricket's invisible pillars--fans

It would be an understatement to say that Cricket is a passion in India. The sport has touched everyone's life in one way or the other. 83 celebrates this aspect quite well. A touching scene in which a child says 'Kapil aayega' is a case in point as it highlights how cricketers often embody the aspirations/hopes of their countrymen. In another one, Indians fight with 'locals' to celebrate India's win over England in the semi-finals in Manchester.

A climax fit for the big screen

S S Rajamouli's Baahubali emerged as a gamechanger for Indian cinema because of the director's ability to build an aura around simple reel moments, transforming them into spectacles. With 83, Kabir does just that. The climax's staging is as right as rain as the director builds up a sense of tension around the fall of West Indies' last wicket using the background score/sound design as his secret weapon. The moment is a surreal feel to it that can be experienced only in theatres


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