Lahore (2010) *HQ*

nullWith a perfectly predictable plotline, if a film still keeps you riveted through its runtime, you know there’s something earnestly right about it. Lahore has a right director. Sanjay Puran Singh Chauhan has the finesse to package the standard story with the requisite action and intensity that a sports film demands.

The chronicle is conventional to the core within the boxing parameters, employing the rise-of-the-underdog conflict like in Hollywood classics ranging from Sylvester Stallone’s Rocky to Russell Crowe’s Cinderella Man . It’s traditionally Indianized with the revenge-recipe used in desi prototypes ranging from Mithun Chakravarthy’s Boxer to Deol family’s Apn e. The sport is altered from boxing to kick-boxing that offers more flexibility with its freestyle fight sequences. And eventually a new identity is imparted to the film by garnishing it with the social theme of India-Pakistan brotherly bonding.

Dheerendra Singh (Sushant Singh) is selected in the national kickboxing team and under the guidance of coach Rao (Farouque Shaikh) represents India at the international kickboxing tournament in Kaula Lampur. In his combat with the Pakistani opponent Noor (Mukesh Rishi), Singh loses his life. Younger brother Veerendra Singh (Aanaahad), who is a professional cricketer, switches sport to avenge the death of his brother. He makes it to the follow up tournament in Lahore in Pakistan where he contends against Noor.

Though the basic narrative is conventional, the writing by Sanjay Puran Singh Chauhan and Piyush Mishra is well-etched touching topics beyond the field, like the politics involved in selection, psychic maneuvering of the sportsmen and his consequent viciousness for victory. As multiple characters make entry in initial reels, you take time to understand their characterizations and absorb their aspirations because of the new domain of the less-popular sport.

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