Bollywood Reviews, Movie Reviews

When It Comes To Football, There’s No Better Place Than “Maidaan”!

Witness the underdog story of Indian football during the 1950s era when one man revolutionized the history of the game! When the Indian football team was in distress, there appeared only one person who could revive and connect them as a team. He was Coach Syed Abdul Rahim who is regarded as an iconic figure in Indian sports history.

Maidaan (2024): The Legacy Of The Golden Era Of Indian Football!

Co-produced by Boney Kapoor, and co-written and directed by Amit Sharma, a biographical sports drama on India’s esteemed football coach Syed Abdul Rahim titled “Maidaan”, translated as “The Field”, hit the Bollywood screens on April 11, 2024. The movie focuses on the challenges faced by Rahim and the sacrifices he made to overcome societal obstacles and make the Indian football team triumph and gain recognition on the world stage.

Maidaan (2024) Official Trailer:

The Good:

A still from Maidaan

A Man with a Vision, He’s the Man on a Mission! Featuring Ajay Devgn as the legendary Indian football coach Syed Abdul Rahim in Maidaan (2024)

This time, it is football and the legendary coach whose biography this movie happens to be is the late Syed Abdul Rahim (played by Ajay Devgn). Rahim’s immense contribution towards the Indian football team that led India to achieve gold medals in the Asian Games has been highlighted. Under his efficient leadership, the Indian football team even qualified for the semi-finals of the 1956 Summer Olympics which was indeed a big thing in the history of Indian football as football is a not so recognized sport in India. If you are a true Indian, you will experience proud moments upon seeing India’s triumph under Rahim’s guidance.

You may have seen Bollywood sports dramas like Shah Rukh Khan’s “Chak De India”, Akshay Kumar’s “Gold”, and Ranveer Singh’s “83”. The plot of “Maidaan” can be connected to these movies as the story looks more or less similar, a coach or the captain making the Indian sports team achieve laurels in a world tournament. You may wonder, then what’s special about Maidaan? It’s the same story again, isn’t it? Many legendary coaches and team captains have made India win in tournaments and this is yet another similar story.

One Man, One Dream: Victory For India!

Maidaan poster

Maidaan (2024): Introducing Gajraj Rao as journalist Roy Chaudhary

But believe me, it’s Ajay Devgn’s stellar performance that sets Maidaan apart from any other biographical sports drama that you may have seen till now. Two types of audiences usually watch football-based dramas at the theaters. The first category signifies those who connect with the game and know all about it. The second category indicates those who just visit the theater to enjoy any movie they can. For a three-hour-long sports drama, keeping the audience engaged is not a piece of cake. Ajay Devgn’s larger-than-life character in Maidaan is so strong that it brings both these categories of audiences to the same level, keeping them glued to the screens with excitement!

Ajay Devgn’s confidence, body language, and dialogue delivery in any role he plays is remarkable. Coach Rahim’s history has been written in gold in Indian football’s history and Ajay brought this esteemed character to life in the movie. The technical aspects of the football game haven’t been portrayed much. It’s the magic of Ajay’s motivational dialogues which he passes on to his team and changes the game. In short, Ajay as Coach Rahim acts as an adhesive between football and entertainment!

The Track “Team India Hain Hum”: We Are Team India!

A still from Maidaan

Casting Priyamani as Coach Rahim’s wife, Saira in Maidaan (2024)

Maidaan’s presentation is outstanding. The screenplay has been presented with twists and turns that add to the suspense and thrill. Trust me, even if you don’t enjoy watching football, you will upon watching this movie. The impact of the screenplay is so immense! Maidaan has been directed by Amit Sharma who is known for making emotional cinema in Bollywood. That’s the reason after watching the climax, you wouldn’t want to leave the theater.

The amazing part of the play is it turns a comedian like Gajraj Rao into a villainous journalist whom you will probably hate. Priyamani as Rahim’s wife looked convincing in every scene she did. You will even come across many historic football players in the movie. The best part was the background music. The background music during the tournaments was simply out of the world!

Maidaan (2024) Final Trailer:

The Bad:

I am a bit disappointed with the cinematography in Maidaan. The visuals appeared dull. Maybe the makers wanted to create a retro effect of the 1950s era and that’s what made them purposefully create somber visuals.

Maidaan trailer launch

From Left: Producer Boney Kapoor, Priyamani, Ajay Devgn, and Director Amit Sharma at the trailer launch event of Maidaan (2024)

This film was set to be released in 2020. However, it was finally released four years later in 2024 on account of COVID-19, cyclonic storms, and post-production work-related delays. This made the film appear old as filmmaking styles have changed a lot in four years.

Maidaan (2024) The Musical Trailer:

The Verdict:

Cheer and shed a proud tear because Maidaan is not just about Coach Rahim and football. It’s also about the emotions that are associated with the game. Those emotions impact the minds of the audience as well as bind a team with its coach so that together they set to achieve a mission, Victory!

Maidaan poster

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  • Acting - 9.8/10
  • Cinematography/Visual Effects - 6.5/10
  • Plot/Screenplay - 9/10
  • Setting/Theme - 9/10
  • Watchability - 9/10
  • Rewatchability - 7.5/10
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