The Indian men’s hockey team won the country’s first Olympic medal as a free nation in 1948 at the 14th London Olympiad. The captain of the new team was Kishen Lal,with KD Singh (Babu)being the vice-captain. This was the first time when India marched holding the tricolour, as a free nation, in the opening ceremony at the Wembley Stadium.
This was the fourth consecutive gold medal for India in the sport, and its first as an independent nation.
The film is apparently said to be based on the life of hockey player Balbir Singh who was in the team that won the first Olympic medal for India as a free nation in 1948at the 14th London Olympiad.
Even after having some unbeaten records written in his name, the legendary player never got the recognition he deserved. Even after retiring from the field, Balbir Singh didn’t part ways from the national game of the country. He remained associated with the game as a coach and a manager of the Indian Hockey Team.
Director Reema helms the film, who is known for films like ‘Honeymoon Travels PVT LTd’and ‘Talaash.
Gold is the basic, every-single-sports-movie story of a Bengali junior manager Tapan Das who puts together a team of aspiring hockey players to do the impossible — here winning the Olympic gold.
This is undoubtedly a challenging role for Akshay Kumar, the superstar doing decently well as he tackles a talented cast and makes the film a believable piece of work . Stop looking up Miracle, A League Of Their Own or The Mighty DucksDVDs –– it’s a straight sports film, and you walk into the theatre knowing how it’s going to turn out.
The focus/ spotlight squarely on Tapan Das, a team manager grappling with his own set of issues in a battle to stay relevant in free India’s hockey plans and how he motivates an entire team to win the Olympic Gold.
The first half takes its time to buildup, predictably. There’s no surprise as the tale unfolds, and the horrible, overwhelming background score tries too hard — this is, after all a Bollywood film, and considering that they’ve gone for a no-heroine authentic sports movie, we ought allow them that major concession — and is further undercut by trite, jingoistic dialogue. Granted, these come at occasional moments, but the melodrama truly jars. Tapan Das holds the film together as Reema and the rest of the cast gradually get to grips — with both lines and sticks.
The second half tends to dip due to its long length and unwanted scenes. The film becomes less compelling, constant, and leaves a lot of room for filler.
‘Gold’ isn’t quite a Lagaan or a Chak De selecting the sport more trodden rather than the one conventionally heralded, and so it isn’t likely to expect applause in the aisles as the team manages to unite together. It is, however, more of a sports film talking about the story of an individual overshadowing the story of a team.
Reema’s film struggles a bit, clearly trying hard to strike a balance between classic melodrama and the sporting genre. There are times when it tries to straddle the fence hastily, even failing badly, and as a result the movie, while a perfectly good sporting film, seems to have lost the edge we might have expected from the ‘Talaash’ director. It’s a fine, true-blooded sports movie though, and ek watch banta hai.
Akshay Kumar has done his best but is the weakest link as far the performances are concerned. Amit Sadh and Sunny Kaushal ( Vicky Kaushal’s brother) shines through out. Vineet Kumar Singh and Kunal Kapoor are at their best.
You know what’s going to happen, but it’s a Good watch — and especially satisfying to see the Indian flag being hoisted during the climax.