Art & Entertainment

‘Maidaan’ Movie Review: Ajay Devgn’s Football Drama Challenges Social Commentary By Delving Into Personal Journeys Alongside On-Field Triumphs

Outlook Rating:
4 / 5

When the first trailer of Ajay Devgn’s ‘Maidaan’ was released, people started branding it as a copy of ‘Chak De India’ starring Shah Rukh Khan. But is the movie just that? Read the full movie review to find out.

Ajay Devgn In A Still From ‘Maidaan’
Ajay Devgn In A Still From ‘Maidaan’ Photo: Instagram

After a massive delay, ‘Maidaan’ has finally been released in theatres all over. The film has been in the making for over 3-4 years, and whenever there was a release date announced, something or the other came up and the film was pushed further ahead. With the film finally sticking on the Eid 2024 release date, it’s a day of joy not just for the cast and crew, but the billions of fans who were waiting to see another sports drama, and probably one of the first ones to ever tell the story of India’s triumphs in football in the past. Here’s all you need to know about ‘Maidaan’.

‘Maidaan’: Story

The film, which runs from 1952 to 1962, follows the life and career of Syed Abdul Rahim (Ajay Devgn), a renowned football coach who transformed the sport in India. Because of his significant contributions to football, the Indian Football Team was dubbed the ‘Brazil of Asia’ and played in a 4-2-4 shape. Syed Abdul Rahim’s tenacity, leadership, and vision helped him become a legendary figure in Indian sports history. ‘Maidaan’ depicts Syed Abdul Rahim and the Indian football team’s trials, sacrifices, and triumphs as they work to overcome social hurdles and make their mark on the world arena. That led to India winning two gold medals at the 1951 and 1962 Asian Games, and the India Football Team being Asia’s first football team to reach the semi-finals of the 1956 Summer Olympics.

‘Maidaan’: Performances

Ajay Devgn’s portrayal of the coach Syed Abdul Rahim is subtle and diverse, revealing the nuances of his character as he navigates the ups and downs of guiding a squad. His relationship with the young actors portraying the football players gives substance to the story, as they bond over their mutual love of the game and resolve to win despite the odds.

‘Maidaan’: Cast & Crew

Director: Amit Sharma

Cast: Ajay Devgn, Priyamani, Gajraj Rao, Devyansh Tripathi, Nitanshi Goel, Aayesha Vindhara, Meenal Patel, Rudranil Ghosh, Baharul Islam, Zaheer Mirza, Madhur Mittal, Chaitanya Sharma, Tejas Ravishankar, Davinder Gill, Amartya Ray, Sushant Waydande, Abhilash Thapliyal, Manandeep Singh, Vishnu G Varrier, Raphael Jose, Jayanth V., Aaman Munshi, Sai Kishore, Amandeep Thakur, Tanmay Bhattacharjee, Arko Das, Prajwal Maski, Rishab Joshi, Vijay Maurya, Pavitra Sarkar, Purnendu Bhattacharya, Shruthy Menon

Available In: Theatres

Duration: 3 Hours 1 Minute

‘Maidaan’: Can Kids Watch It?


Outlook’s Verdict

‘Maidaan’ goes beyond the traditional sports drama genre by delving into the protagonists’ inner journeys as well as their achievements on the field. The movie delves into the numerous sacrifices made by the players and the coach especially, emphasising the human element behind the desire of excellence. Ajay Devgn’s performance stands out, as it’s a welcome change to see him move away from his bulging-biceped action avatar. The story is compelling and the background score just leaves you feeling satiated to the core. The trailers may have suggested that it was just another copy of Shah Rukh Khan’s ‘Chak De India’, but ‘Maidaan’ makes a mark on its own. Overall it’s a Breezy Repeatable Watch. I am going with 4 stars.