Jersey Review & Rating|
Jersey Review: A Reinvented Nani Offers A Rewarding Experience With Jersey
Forget Natural Star Nani and welcome Nani Arjun, a new actor. A bit exaggeration. Yes. But not far off the mark though. Jersey which slowly but steadily gained momentum in the lead up to its release has hit the screens today with the promise of an emotionally rewarding experience. And add to that, the movie has two more unique selling points. A sports drama, cricket at that, and Nani the actor reinventing himself. Both lucrative offers for movie buffs in any weekend.
The story of Arjun's Love
Arjun is a highly talented cricketer during the late 1980s. His life is like a dream for many with loads of talent (similar to Rohit Sharma) and smooth sailing career. He meets Sarah and falls in love. We have seen this all. It was in the year 1986. But before this detail, the movie starts with the release of a book on the life of Arjun by his son (suspense ;-) ) hinting at how the movie is going to be.
Cut to 10 years since Arjun’s introduction to Sarah, now he is a married man with a son. He’s jobless like the unsuccessful or unfortunate cricketers of that era and has to depend on his wife’s income to survive. Obviously this leads to friction between the couple. His son is interested in the game. Despite the struggle to find meaning of his life, Arjun has one bright spot in his life. It is his son.
One of the simplest wishes of his son is to have a jersey for himself. Arjun promises that he would get him one. But it costs money and he couldn’t get his hands on sufficient bucks. His wife doesn’t encourage any of this and take it kindly to their son’s wish. Arjun had to play a charity match with a visiting New Zealand team. Despite a long gap, naturally gifted he is, he plays with aplomb and scores runs like he never left the game.
Still that is not enough for winning the match for his team. A failure. Damn failure. He couldn’t keep his promise to buy him a jersey. Frustrated, and then motivated, Arjun wants to make a comeback to the field.
His wife disagrees with him. Others laugh as he is already 36 by that time and the administrators objects to his efforts in disbelief. But his fire cannot be curbed. How and if he makes his comeback and takes his right place in the cricketing lore form the rest of the story.
Writing and direction
Jersey could well be a biopic of any of the struggling cricketers if the immediate yesteryear. The days just before the Internet and social media. Such is the realistic manner in which the story is narrated by director Gowtam Tinnanuri.
There are several scenes in the movie which elicit instant emotions from the audience. The confrontation between Arjun and his wife Sarah gets on your nerves. You’ll get angry with Sarah for not supporting Arjun.
The bonding between Arjun and his son is established in such a way that every middle-aged person will look into their own selves. It appeals to the fatherly instincts. It is refreshing to see such a warm relation is shown on the screen without any artificiality. The screenplay of the film too followed the same beats of a biopic. Rather we can say it’s a tale in the form of a story than a commercial template film. There are ups and downs in the tempo.
It should be expected given the nature of the film. The director scores brownie points for not adulterating the film with unnecessary commercial elements. What sort of better commercial elements can be used than heart-tugging emotional scenes that register strongly with the audience? The interval block is one of the best we have seen lately. And the climax wets your eyes.
Arjun is a sympathetic hero without being pathetic. The plight he goes through can be similar to many of us. Of course, not everyone is a cricketer. But everyone experiences downtime in their lives and rejections. Jersey is not a simple sports drama. It has a universal resonance. It is comparable in its content to such films as Cinderella Man and Pursuit of Happyness.
Nani reinvented himself
Nani is a revelation in this movie. We very often use his/her best performance to describe someone’s work these days. But it is an understatement to say Nani reinvented himself with Jersey. He is Nani Arjun rather than the Natural Star Nani we all come to know and love. It is the same Nani and the same voice recognisable even in the sleep. But still he has shown a difference in his body language.
His role has two major shades. That of a successful young man full of life and a 36 year old who is struggling in his life. He is authentic in both time periods. The cricket scenes also brought a natural candour to his performance. He completely merged into the role he has played unlike in many of his recent films. We want more of that from Nani.
Shraddha Srinath is terrific as Arjun’s girlfriend and then wife. Her evolution of their relationship forms a major subplot in the movie. She shared an excellent but unusual chemistry with Nani. Ronit Karma who played the son of the lead pair is the find of the year. What a joy it is to watch him on the big screen! You can easily mistake Nani and this boy to be real life father and son. That’s some sparkling chemistry between actors we have seen in a some time.
Sathyaraj who recently played the role of a cricket loving farmer in the Tamil sports drama Kanaa appeared as the coach in Jersey. He lent authenticity to the role. The actors who played cricketers are good and added to the authentic recreation of game atmosphere. The cricket scenes are not just used as backdrop. They form the fabric of the narration.
The music of the film, be it the songs or the background score, is first rate. Anirudh Ravichander put his heart and soul for this film. It blended well with the setting of the film. The cinematography is top-notch. The visuals have a raw charm. The frames and lighting lent a grounded aura to the proceedings. The editing is smooth and complemented the non-linear narration. Despite the obvious lags in narration, we cannot say it should be trimmed.
The production design is brilliant. The period setting is recreated with authenticity. The locations are good. And the household and surroundings of the protagonist are done well. The production values are grand. It is an uncompromising production in every way. The action choreography (not stunts - read: cricketing action is as good as it gets).
Jersey is not just a film. It is a tribute to father-son relationship and the unwavering spirit of a man. It is never too late to chase your dream and succeed in your life. Like the cricketer Pravin Tambe who made his IPL debut at the age of 41 and still made a mark, you can do anything if you have an undaunted will. Go and watch Jersey. Sit through the boring moments (which are very few). The end result will be highly rewarding.
- Nani all the way
- Shraddha Srinath
- The bonding between Arjun and his son
- Ronit Kamra (the boy who played Nani-Shraddha Srinath's son)
- Gowtam Tinnanuri making
- The interval block and the preceding cricket match
- A few laggy moments in the narration
- Not much entertainment (for a section of the audience)
- The film is too classy
Pycker Rating: 3.25 out of 5
Tailpiece: Nani is not back because he is never out of the game.
Reviewed by: GitacharYa
Jersey Critic Reviews
Jersey User Reviews
Wow..!! what a movie it is...:)! Superb acting by Nani and other artists. I hope every boy has related stories like this in their life. I don't have a chance to go back now. If it is possible in real life-I don't want to miss it again.....
success is first set very success have many family and friends any person join of life journey l like super movie screenplay also good background music is nice
Emotional and heart warming rollercoaster ride
Natural Star Nani's Jersey is one of the most promising films of the summer with Malli Raava director who proved himself at delivering emotional content with ease helming this film. Also co-stars Kannada actress Shraddha Srinath, the sports drama is high on emotions and showcases father-son bonding in a sensible way. As the premieres came to an end and early and morning shows underway, the talk for the film is generally positive. Surely, Jersey is Nani's best performance. With an able support cast, especially the boy Ronit Kamra who played Nani's son, Jersey is getting the approval of the audience.
There are comments that there is a slight drag in the second half. Despite this, terrific performances and emotional scenes capture the audience attention. Lack of entertainment is another complaint but the climax and the ending of the film give you a rewarding experience. The father-son bonding between Nani and the boy form the key moments of the film. It is said to be one of the highlights of the film.
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What is Jersey About?
A film about father-son bonding, we have seen a million such films, right? But this is not that of a youngster of a son and an older father who always scolds his son to achieve something in his life. No, not one such film. Jersey is a father's promise to do something for his son by proving himself.
With cricket as the backdrop and Natural Star Nani as the lead playing the role of a 36-year-old father struggling to make ends meet, the Gowtam Tinnanuri directorial Jersey which also stars Shraddha Srinath promises to be another success story at Tollywood box office. The movie which is about determination and hope has all the makings of a favorite weekend watch for movie buffs who also loves the game of cricket.
A heart-warming tale of hope and determination
Arjun was a cricket player. A mighty talented one at that. But it was 10 years ago. A time when he was full of life and energy. And a doting girlfriend. But for whatever reason, now he is nearly leading the life of a bum. He couldn't afford anything his son wants. His wife is fed up with him. Whenever he asks for a few bucks, she rebukes him. His life hits the nadir when he is caught taking money in his own house by his wife who says every time she would think he couldn't reach another low point, he comes up with a new low.
His only option is to revive his life. Means cricket. he does everything for his son. The little bundle of joy, the sole joy of his life, is who keeps Arjun determined to achieve the heights he was destined to. Arjun turns to cricket. He wants to make it count at the late age of 36 when any other person would be thinking about retirement.
Natural Star Nani becomes Nani the actor
Think about it! Just a year ago, Natural Star Nani was on an all-time high in his career. 8 back to back box office successes as an actor - a streak unmatched by any of the current generation stars. Another one is a cult hit which he produced. But unfortunately, his next couple of films failed to catch the fancy of the audience. It might not have affected his stardom but warning signs certainly.
Such was the sustained success and goodwill he carries, Jersey is surrounded by a terrific buzz among the movie buffs, not to talk about his fans. The film is carrying a lot of positive vibes and is certain to click with the target audience. And for this film, Nani has shed his regular style of acting and promises that only Arjun will appear on the screen.
Gowtam Tinnanuri and his team
Gowtam Tinnanuri who delivered a film like Malli Raava which clicked with a section of the audience big time now comes up with a story which resonates universally. With a star cast headed by Nani, he has every chance to one-up his own success. Let's hope that he hasn't fallen prey to the second-film syndrome.
Kollywood maverick music director Anirudh Ravichander has come up with a terrific score from what we have seen in the promo materials. Sanu Varghese cinematography has a lovely earthy feel. Sandalwood actress Shraddha Srinath plays the role of Arjun's love interest and future wife and her presence will make a difference to the overall fabric of the film. Ronit Kamra who played the son of the lead pair appears to be a promising child actor.
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