Rashmi Rocket Movie Review: Taapsee Pannu sprints in this predictable but relevant film
Movie: Rashmi Rocket
Rashmi Rocket Director: Akarsh Khurana
Rashmi Rocket Cast: Taapsee Pannu
Rashmi Rocket Rating: 3/5
Cinegoers might feel that Rashmi Rocket is a film which speaks about how women are unfairly treated in a patriarchal society. Juxtaposing the facilities, benefits and mind-set towards male and female athletes isn’t a subject unheard of in Bollywood. Chak De! India was one such film which earned accolades for the treatment of the subject. But are we done? No, we shouldn’t. Until the time the stubborn ideas cease to exist from the society (and its mind-set), films should address them.
Rashmi Rocket revolves around a young girl, Rashmi (played by Taapsee Pannu) from Kutch, blessed with a gift. The gift of sprinting! She's a born athlete who dreams of crossing the finish line in swoosh. After deciding to never sprint again, Rashmi makes a professional entry to the tracks after much needed nudge from her family and her ‘soon to be boyfriend’. Her rise up the professional athletics arena is quick and attracts the envy of some fellow sprinters too. However, an archaic medical test not just ruins her reputation but also stands to question her identity.
Regardless of what the film-makers claim, the film reminds you of the famous case of national champion and sprinter Dutee Chand. There are similar nuggets of ‘inspirations’ thrown in to support the storyline. Rashmi fails the gender test after winning three medals for the country and is therefore humiliated. Hereon, the story is not just about Rashmi but many others like her who have been the subject of the insensitive practice.
The writing is predictable yet engaging. The court room drama was much better and even pokes fun at the ‘dramatic’ court scenes of Indian films. Though, once the poking is done, the writers do take a leeway by adding a bit of the drama again.
Coming to the acting department, Taapsee Pannu has done complete justice to Rashmi. She leaves an indelible impact as the film nears the climax. As an actor, Taapsee has grown but her sensibilities towards understanding the emotional nuances of the character has improved even more.
Supriya Pathak, Manoj Joshi and Supriya Pilgaonkar were outstanding in the parts they were offered. Priyanshu Painyuli lit up the screen at times and completely complimented the storyline. Abhishek Banerjee deserves a special mention and it’s a treat to see him as lawyer Eeshit Mehta. He impresses in his not so dragged monologues in the courtroom.
Watching Rashmi go through the ordeal might trigger you to remember your own journey. Times when your identity, loyalty and passion was questioned. The film beautifully runs on a simple philosophy of life: "Haar-jeet toh parinaam hai, Koshish humara kaam hai." (It doesn’t matter what the results are, perseverance is what matters). You will find multiple people around you who will tell you that efforts are important but results are ultimate goals. Nobody denies the impact of results, but while results are important, what is equally important is to introspect and have a clear conscience of giving an honest effort. Rashmi faces such moments a few times in her journey, and every time she is reminded of the dialogue by her dad. Hence, Rashmi Rocket becomes a sprinter who turns her personal battle into a race for respect, honour, and even her identity.