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18 Aug 2023 | 135 Mins



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Ghoomer Review: Abhishek Bachchan, Saiyami’s impactful performances make you connect with this emotional story

Planning to watch R Balki’s Ghoomer this weekend? Read Pinkvilla’s review of this Abhishek Bachchan, Shabana Azmi, Saiyami Kher, Angad Bedi and Shivendra Singh Dungarpur starrer.

Published on Aug 17, 2023   |  01:32 AM IST  |  632.4K
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Pic Credit: IMDB

Ghoomer Review: Abhishek Bachchan, Saiyami’s impactful performances make you connect with this emotional story (Pic Credit: IMDB)

Name: ghoomer

Director: R Balki

Cast: Angad Bedi,Abhishek Bachchan,Shabana Azmi,Saiyami Kher

Writer: Sujoy Ghosh,r.balki

Rating: 3

In the trailer of R Balki’s Ghoomer, Abhishek Bachchan - who plays ex-cricketer Paddy - says, “Life logic ka khel nahin hai, yeh life magic ka khel hai”, and this line sets the tone for this soon-to-release sports-drama, which besides AB junior is also headlined by Shabana Azmi, Saiyami Kher, Angad Bedi and Shivendra Singh Dungarpur. While the mind struggles to keep logic at bay in this emotional drama, it is the heart that surpasses that to empathize with the journeys of two athletes, who find each other in times of despair. 


Anina (Saiyami Kher) has a promising career in cricket, and has complete support of her grandmother (Shabana Azmi), father (Shivendra Singh Dungarpur), and boyfriend (Angad Bedi). Things were going as planned until the athlete met with an unfortunate accident, and lost her right arm. She loses all hope, but ex-cricketer Paddy (Abhishek Bachchan) steps in to motivate the young cricketer to take up bowling, and revive her dreams of being a part of the Indian national women’s cricket team. Does Anina accept his mentorship, and for what reason does Paddy decide to help her is for you to watch in Ghoomer. 

What’s Hot? 

When Shah Rukh Khan said in Chak De! India, “Team Banane Ke Liye Taakat Nahin, Neeyat Chahiye”, the world agreed with him, and celebrated his team’s victory. Where I am getting at is the word ‘neeyat’ aka intention, and Ghoomer plays up on the same emotion. No, there aren’t any comparisons here, as Balki has combined this intent and desire, with a moving story of an ambitious athlete, who is challenged by a pitiful circumstance. So yes, Anina’s journey does make you emotional, connects with you on a human level, makes you want to root for her - and that becomes the biggest strength of Ghoomer. Kudos to writers Balki, Rahul Sengupta and Rishi Virmani for bringing the emotion of empathy to life on the big screen, and making their audience feel it as well. 

Dialogues are in sync with the narrative and the characters, sometimes using word play as means to create impact. For instance, Paddy’s line, “Your left hand has to earn the ‘right’ to bowl”, combined with Amit Trivedi’s background score creates the desired effect. Director of Photography Vishal Sinha’s lens ably captures the world of Ghoomer. Amit Trivedi’s title track makes you want to celebrate with the characters, and ‘Purnaviram’ makes you feel Anina’s plight, but the other two tracks ‘Dil Dum Chhalla’ and ‘Taqdeer Se Taqraa’ don't do much for me. Shout out to Swanand Kirkire (Purnaviram) and Kausar Munir (Ghoomer) for their meaningful lyrics. 

Furthermore, Shruti Mahajan’s casting is bang on, and production designer Sandeep Sharad Ravade’s work is in sync with the narrative. 

What’s Not?

While the concept is beautiful, it is certain skipped and over portrayed emotions that makes the narrative look convenient, and sometimes even confused. For instance, Shabana Azmi’s character begins as a strong figure in Anina’s life sharing her ambition, knowledge and efforts for the game and life in general, but when a mishap happens with the athlete there is little to no strong reaction from her end that justifies the aspiration she had for her granddaughter’s calling. Additionally, there is a sequence between Abhishek Bachchan, Angad Bedi and Saiyami Kher on a Diwali night, which was designed to showcase Anina pushing her boundaries, but ends up being a confused, over-expressed sequence, which does nothing for the story. 

Another example of convenient narrative, was underplaying the strengths of Anina’s other teammates in the final match, to highlight the former’s skills despite her limitations. While the match started on a promising note, it rather ended up being gimmicky, which couldn’t be justified by the line “Cricket is a funny game”. Sports director Dhruv P Panjuani could have worked a bit more on this part. The crowd VFX in the stadium looks unreal and unconvincing. 


Each and every actor has played their part to the T. Abhishek Bachchan as Paddy is outstanding, and I wish we see him onscreen more often taking up such characters that allows him to portray an array of emotions. Saiyami Kher’s portrayal of Anina is subtle yet impactful, and I really believe she is one of the most underrated artists of our time. Shabana Azmi does justice to her role, though I wish the writers had given her character more active participation in Anina’s post accident prep, which would have made her part more wholesome. Angad Bedi lends able support with a likable and dependable character, and Shivendra Singh Dungarpur is endearing as Anina’s father.  

Final Verdict

Some verdicts are hard to give. While the heart leans towards the emotions, the mind is unable to completely ignore the flaws. In both situations, what stays consistent is the human connection with the overall story, and that I think is why you should watch Ghoomer.


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Credits: Pinkvilla

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