Mukkabaaz Movie Review: India’s Answer To ‘Rocky’?
Years ago, before he became a superstar, Sylvester Stallone wrote a script about an underdog boxer and struggled to find producers for it because of his condition that only he be allowed to play the protagonist. The film (Rocky) went on to become one of the greatest Hollywood sports drama and is still considered a cult classic. Vineet Kumar Singh (of Ugly and Gangs Of Wasseypur fame) has a similar story... After writing Mukkabaaz, he struggled for more than two years trying to find backers for it before Anurag Kashyap stepped in to save the day, but will Mukkabaaz prove to be India’s answer to Rocky? Read on... Set in Bareilly, the film revolves around Shravan Singh (Vineet), an aspiring boxer who falls in love with the mute niece of the local boxing coach and strongman Bhagwan Das Mishra (Jimmy Sheirgill). When Shravan defies Mishra’s authority, the latter goes out of his way to ruin Shravan’s love life and his chances of becoming ‘Uttar Pradesh ka Mike Tyson’ because he is a Rajput, who dared to defy a Brahmin. How Shravan deals with these challenges, forms the rest of the plot. Vineet Kumar, who was seen in small roles in Ugly and GOW, is definitely the highlight of the film. The young man has given his sweat and blood to the film and rightfully deserves every pat on his back that is coming his way. Vineet is simply impressive as Shravan whether he is letting his fists talk or defending his passion to his father (Rajesh Tailang) or smiling bashfully at the object of his affection. Zoya Hussain, who plays Sunaina Mishra, the niece of Bhagwan Das, plays her part beautifully and unlike other disabled characters portrayed in other films, is feisty enough to punch someone for showing her sympathy. Sunaina may be unable to talk, but she is as expressive (or even more) than someone who can. Jimmy Sheirgill is menacing as the arrogant Bhagwan Das, who believes in the supremacy of Brahmins and is willing to go to any lengths for his beliefs. Ravi Kishan is dignified as Shravan’s coach Sanjay Kumar and proves to be an able counter foil to Bhagwan. As for the film, Mukkabaaz is a variation of the ‘poor boy meets rich girl’ plot that has been peddled in Bollywood throughout the years. However, what sets this film apart from the countless other love stories made is the sheer realism and the gritty treatment. Shravan and Sunaina are in love, but they do not run around trees or whisper sweet nothings to each other on snowy mountains because there are ugly issues like casteism, nepotism, corruption, favourtism, cynicism, disapproval of parents and regional politics to deal with. The action scenes are one of the best I have ever seen and the intensity of Shravan’s punches made me wince quite a few times. Vineet trained long and hard for this role and his hard work is evident in the scenes where he is shown training to be a boxer and his boxing match sequences. Special mention must also be made of the background score by Prashant Pillai, which beautifully complements the plot. The film has a few flaws- length being one of it, as it seems stretched at times as the run time is more than two hours. Nevertheless, Mukkabaaz is a grim and gritty fare, that deserves a watch, but will it be India's answer to 'Rocky'? Do watch the film and find out...
Release Date : 12 January 2018
Director : Anurag Kashyap
Genre : Action , Sports