Helmed by Shaad Ali, Soorma is a biographical film that is based on the life of a hockey player Sandeep Singh. Bankrolled by Sony Pictures Networks India and The CS Films, Soorma is an inspiring story of the veteran hockey player, who after being paralysed at an accidental gunshot in 2006, used a wheelchair for two years. Fighting all odds, Sandeep got back on his legs and made it to the international hockey in 2008. It was under his captaincy that India won the 2009 Sultan Azlan Shah Cup and was qualified for 2012 Olympics. Diljit Dosanjh, Tapsee Pannu and Angad Bedi starrer Soorma has released on July 13, 2018 and here’s what critics are saying about the Sandeep Singh biopic Soorma.
Times of India (3.5/5): Shaad Ali’s narrative goes easy on the theatrics focussing more on the real turn of events, which have enough potential to inspire. There are elaborate scenes of the game, but they too are more realistic and less dramatic. The film also presents a great arc for Sandeep’s character, where he learns the importance of family and patriotism. The fact that this Indian athlete learns the importance of wearing Indian colours and playing for the country, makes this story even more special. So if you want to know when, why, how and what happened to Sandeep Singh, Soorma is the name of the game. It is a story told with its heart in the right place, and on that count it scores. Only that, it shows you the reality, minus the melodrama.
NDTV (2/5): Sandeep Singh, as envisioned by Shaad Ali, is as dynamic as a stenciled, unidimensional sketch. Lead actor Diljit Dosanjh does his very best to inject life into the character. The second half of Soorma is somewhat better than the first. Soorma is more drag than flick, a hockey film sans genuine impetus. It is nowhere near the league of Chak De India despite telling a story that is no less intense than a wrongly victimized coach’s struggle for redemption. Come to think of it, the Shimit Amin film was made over a decade ago. Why hasn’t the Mumbai movie industry delivered another sports drama quite that good? The reason is obvious: Bollywood just doesn’t do sports well. Its rules militate against the genre. Soorma, a wasted opportunity, demonstrates why and how.
Hindustan Times (2/5): Soorma doesn’t attempt to probe beyond the obvious, even if you don’t know the real story. With 131-minute duration, Soorma presents Sandeep as the ultimate boy scout. A tinge of reality wouldn’t have hurt.
Indian Express (2.5/5): The film keeps that crucial spirit to the fore when it starts off. The moment it shifts track, and starts building up its lead into a hero, background music blaring, and the sporting blood-and-sweat shoved into the background, it becomes your standard ‘rona-dhona’ fare. A bhangra song-and-dance is bunged in. And the hockey gets drowned in tears. In choosing to show the personal side, the professional aspects get short shrift, and that’s where the film doesn’t score as well.
Times Now (3/5): Shaad Ali’s Soorma is probably the most honest biopic made in India. The first half of the film is like a breath of fresh air and flows like a river. The story has everything, from drama, comedy, emotion, thrill, romance and even some clap worthy dialogues. On the downside though, the film, after a fantastic first half, takes a dip towards the second half. And moreover, the climax of the film fails to create the rush one would’ve hoped. I know, the makers tried to display his arc in the film but they didn’t have a proper ending to the film. In simple words, it was plain and bland.
Firstpost (2/5): As commercial Bollywood veterans might point out, iss kahaani main drama hai, emotion hai, romance hai, naach-gaana hai aur twist bhi (this story has drama, emotion, romance, song ‘n’ dance and a twist) – in short, all the ingredients that tend to please conventional audiences. And in the first half, Ali (who earlier directed Saathiya and Bunty Aur Babli) and his co-writers Suyash Trivedi and Siva Ananth mine each of these elements to come up with an entertaining mix. But it is a pity that Ali and his team manage to draw us into the pages of his world only up to a point but mess up the most important chapter. Diljit Dosanjh and Angad Bedi are always worth watching, but the film should have been a lot more than what it ends up being.