R. Madhavan and Ritika Singh
Rajkumar Hirani and R. Madhavan
When we spoke to Rajkumar Hirani and Madhavan about what made Saala Khadoos special, their conviction convinced us that this would be a fantastic film. And, oh boy, it so is.
Adi Tomar (Madhavan) is seen as the coach of a girls’ boxing team. But when politics kick in, Adi is transferred to Chennai because of claims of sexual harassment. In Chennai, Adi has made up his mind that he wants to find a girl who has fire for the sport. The unlikely candidate is the raw and feisty fisherwoman, Madhi, played by Ritik Singh. Madhi’s sister, Lakshmi, wants to use boxing to get into the police, and ends up playing a game which results in Madhi being kicked out of a crucial game. After Madhi’s performance, Adi pushes her away from his life. But when Madhi is imprisoned after a turn of events that involve the Chief Selector making moves on her, Adi gets involved somehow – but in what capacity will he be able to now?
Rajkumar Hirani spoke about the obsession the director and writer, Sudha Kongara, had with this film. And that obsession is prevalent throughout the film – because it is just so good. This is such a deep and convincing story of two individuals fighting against all barriers that seem to be stacked up against them. The politics surrounding sport is also aptly and effectively highlighted in the film. The narrative is bang-on and the story transitions well from one conflict to another. The locations and scenes of the underbelly of Chennai are effective. The background score and music go well with the kind of story we are watching.
While I love the under-stated and sweet Madhavan from 3 Idiots, I am in complete love with Madhavan in Saala Khadoos. He executes his role with finesse and dedication. You can just see the amount of effort he has put into his role – but in a very good way. Ritika Singh is so refreshing, so confident, and heck, so talented. She is a rare gem of a natural actor who should certainly make other fresh faces very nervous. Of course, the scenes would not be the same without the help of stunt and choreographer, Tom Delmar. Kudos to him.
You have to watch this – one of the finest films of recent times.