Sachin: A Billion Dreams is a docu-drama directed by Emmy-nominated James Erskine and is about the life and career of Master Blaster, Sachin Tendulkar. The cricketer, who is adored by many millions of cricket-loving fans, also serves as the narrator of the movie which also has snippets from his colleagues and friends, like Sourav Ganguly, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Harsha Bhogle, Amitabh Bachchan, Brian Lara, Wasim Akram, Virat Kohli, Yuvraj Singh and others. AR Rahman scores the music for the film. Sachin: A Billion Dreams has got a good response at the theatres and has grossed more than Rs 30 crores in its four-day run till now, which is pretty good for a docu-drama, and with the great response it is getting, we do hope the movie continues to sail ahead as smoothly as before.
Now that technicalities are done away with, let's talk about what I felt about the movie. I had loved Sachin: A Billion Dreams, not because it is about Sachin, but because it showcased the best part of my childhood when I was an avid cricket fan, and Sachin being a part of it. It may have ended up as a PR vehicle for its star but a well-directed effort at that. But we do have this feeling that it could have given a more three-dimensional attitude to its subject, instead of plainly idol-worshipping the man, that the nation already does. Sure, it's inspiring and motivating, and Sachin is definitely a great idol, but if the movie did show a few chinks in his armour, or addressed a few topics properly, then this would have been more of a masterpiece than a good fan tribute. Here are five such flaws we found in the movie, that didn't exactly appealed to us...
Sachin's stiff narration in the studio
It was great that Sachin Tendulkar was narrating his life story, and it makes sense when he talks more about his personal life. However, the master blaster was looking stiff, when he had to sit in a studio room and talk about himself. He was far more comfortable when he was around anything related to cricket, like at the Shivaji Park or when he was discussing his cricket kit. The makers should have kept Sachin out in the open only, instead of stifling him in the studio at times.
Anjali's decision to leave her medical profession
It is often a couple's decision about whether both the spouses should work, or whether one of them should stay at home. So Anjali's decision to leave her medical profession after getting married to Sachin is entirely their own affair. However, since they discussed this in the docudrama, we have to say that the reason they gave her leaving her career for domestic bliss is pretty flimsy. Both Anjali and Sachin say that she had to leave her profession because it would help him focus on his goals. It doesn't make sense since Anjali could have had a great medical career, and also be supportive as a partner to Sachin. India definitely needs more good doctors, please!
Playing safe during match-fixing scandal and ignoring 'Monkey-gate' scandal
Sachin Tendulkar did talk about the match fixing scandal and how it affected him deeply as a professional cricketer to see his colleagues involved in the scandal. He even reveals he had been asked about this many times, but he has nothing to disclose about the scandal. As he puts it like this, he can only talk about the subject, if he had any clue about it. We really do want to give Sachin the benefit of doubt here; perhaps he had no clue about the match-fixing scandal going under his nose. But we do feel he has played safe when it came to depicting the scandal in the film. For one, apart from the late South African former captain Hansie Cronje, the movie refuses to name the Indian cricketers involved. Secondly, did no bookie approach Sachin ever, despite him being the best batsman in the team? Sounds implausible. Talking about controversies, Sachin also completely ignores the 'Monkey-gate' scandal involving Andrew Symonds and Harbhajan Singh, that nearly derailed relations between Indian and Australian cricket boards. Sachin was there when it happened, and yet he chose to ignore this.
Never discussing his personal fallouts
Once upon a time, Vinod Kambli was Sachin's best friend. Their famous unbeaten Shardashram partnership was not overlooked by the movie too. Vinod was also a guest at Sachin's wedding reception. However, over the years, their friendship soured with Kambli accusing Sachin of not supporting his career. Sachin completely disregards this matter, even though he does talk about friendship and bonding in the film. He also doesn't talk about how it was to work under Ganguly, Dravid, Kumble and Dhoni as captains, after his own unsuccessful stints being one.
Why Gautam Gambhir's WC innings get under-appreciated
I have this same issue with MS Dhoni: The Untold Story too. Gautam Gambhir was the highest run-scorer in the World Cup 2011 final with 97 runs. Yes, he did not hit that match-winning six that won India the World Cup, but he was the one who steadied India's innings after the loss of Sachin's wicket. He did get out playing a reckless shot, but both SABD and MSDTUS judge his performance based on that one shot, instead of the 97 runs that came before. Sachin... even gave more footage to Yuvraj's brief innings in the match, making us wonder if Tendulkar was more partial to Yuvi, Dhoni and even Kohli than Gambhir.
Did you find any other issues with Sachin: A Billion Dreams, or do you not agree with what we shared above? Share your thoughts in the comments section below...
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