Film gets stumped when MSD is getting started
MS Dhoni The Untold Story movie review: Despite Sushant Singh Rajput and rest of the cast’s efforts, the film fails because it is not Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s biography, it is his hagiography.
MS Dhoni The Untold Story cast: Sushant Singh Rajput, Anupam Kher, Rajesh Sharma, Bhumika Chawla, Kumud Mishra, Disha Patani, Kiara Advani, Harry Tangri
MS Dhoni The Untold Story director: Neeraj Pandey
To create a true, full-blooded biopic, filmmakers need a free-hand: MS Dhoni The Untold Story, which claims to give us Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Uncut, is much more generous with details from his childhood and his days of struggle than from his blazing tenure as star wicketkeeper-batsman-captain of the Indian cricket team.
The result, with the exception of a few interesting bits and pieces, is bland and predictable. The over-long film cherry-picks the details it wants to serve us, skirting all grey areas and controversies: there are no smart nose-digs, only ingratiating bouquets; only hurrahs (the critique is so muted that we can barely hear it), and loud background music which is used to drum up emotion and drama.
It begins with promise. Young Mahi is more interested in football, badminton and tennis, and tries to blow off his first coach (Rajesh Sharma) who spots his potential. The entire ‘bachpan’-adolescence section, featuring the father (Anupam Kher) who thinks a job will take his son much further than sports, the mother who believes in her son, the sister (Bhumika Chawla) who is a solid support to him, his bunch of loyal friends who just know he can do it, has been crafted with heart and feels authentic. We see Mahi (Sushant Singh Rajput) trying and failing and trying again, despite all the roadblocks, to keep his eye on his goal: to be part of the Indian team and play for his country, and we root for him.