Main Ladega Review: Lots of Heart, Not Enough Knockouts

main ladega

‘Main Ladega’ doesn’t revolutionize the underdog-hero archetype. However, by the film’s conclusion, you’ll find yourself rooting for the lead character, portrayed by Akash Pratap Singh, and the dedicated team of filmmakers whose earnestness shines on screen. Akash’s evolution is particularly noteworthy as he transitions from a nervous wreck to a remarkable protagonist, a departure from the typical rough-edged hero with hidden potential trope.

Based on true events, the film doesn’t break new ground in terms of its script and storyline, and Akash’s sole responsibility for the screenplay results in a somewhat loose narrative. Nonetheless, there’s a slight improvement in the storytelling, although pacing issues persist. Similar to the camaraderie displayed by the boys at the military school who support Akash, director Gaurav Rana and cinematographer Lucky Yadav play pivotal roles in the film’s success. The audience’s empathy extends to the Class 11 student from a small town, particularly during poignant moments like when he coaches his younger brother on how to evade their abusive father, portrayed by Ashwath Bhatt, and assist their mother, played by Jyoti Gauba. Lucky demonstrates finesse in his camerawork, whether capturing scenes of domestic turmoil, Akash’s training, or the intense action in the ring. Additionally, the music by Gibson George, Akshay Menon, and Mukund Suryavanshi enhances the narrative, with tracks like “Tujhse Pyaar Hai” by Akshay Menon leaving a lasting impression.

Beyond Akash’s personal journey, his bond with his hostel friends adds a delightful dimension to the film. Divya Kharnare as the awkward Pradeep, Saurabh Pachauri as Sonu, and Ahan Nirban as Gaurav deliver solid performances, eliciting laughter with their antics. Gandharva Dewan deserves recognition for his portrayal of Gurnam Singh, the boxing champion and Akash’s coach. While Vallari Viraj’s portrayal of the love interest, Gauri, is adequate, the subplot prolongs the film unnecessarily, disrupting its momentum towards the end.

One intriguing aspect of the film is that the family is portrayed as victims of a victim, with the father grappling with his own demons. However, this aspect is only briefly touched upon, and exploring it further could have added depth to both the story and the characters.

‘Main Ladega’ follows a familiar trajectory from underdog to hero, but its sincerity shines through. Despite its predictability, the film’s emotional core and Akash’s journey leave a lasting impact.

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